Naturally society no more than theatre is composed exclusively of "hams" who insist upon provoking entertainment. Nor generally speaking is the object of society a shoot-out. But for those of us who feel the weight of involvement (perhaps even for the greater good and not self-adornment) the metabolism will react accordingly. The customary boundaries are one's health and the weather, graduating to travel, politics and occasionally jewellery and the stock market. One must distinctly avoid religion and former acquaintances or paramours, subjects which as often as not are sous entendu.
Whatever the dalliance the expenditure of energy has its by-product. When the tapers have dwindled to the the pewter candlestick, when the second or third round of cognac has circulated, when only crumbs remain upon the porcelain dessert plates and the linens are strewn across the festive board, then it is time to consult the wall clock and proclaim the lateness of the hour, preparing for the inevitable withdrawal. The ensuing kerfuffle amid swaying arms, embraces and touchless kisses suddenly concludes the hours which have astonishingly sped by.