He replied that his wife's mother gave her an invaluable notion on good behaviour.
*his wife being Nigella Lawson, queen of all things cookery
It is better to be charmed than to charm.
Now there are those who like to engage an audience, to flatter and get a buzz from being listened to.
So Nigella's mother sees this aim to be the most fascinating person in the room as vulgar and misplaced vanity.
Trying to be charming is a self-indulgence whereas allowing oneself to be charmed is good manners.
I can see what she is getting at here ~ no-one likes a show-off, there's enough of those in this mememe-lookatme-wannabe generation.
But if we are to all be charmed ~ who's left to charm us?