If you want to live like a French king, there are certain standards that you have to meet, and certain steps that you must take…
Step 1. Commission a famous artist to make a statue of you dressed as an ancient Roman… or a god… or both, if the artist is talented enough. If he isn’t talented enough, have him executed and get another artist.
Step 2. Buy… or have made… a really big house with lots of really big rooms… then get some paintings… really big paintings… preferably of you and your friends dressed as ancient Romans of Greeks and done by famous artists… have them framed in gold-gilded frames… and hang them in all the really big rooms.
Step 3. Don’t forget to order more paintings of all your relatives.
Step 4. Don’t forget about the ceilings. Plain ceilings are for peasants. Have all your ceilings covered with a layer of real gold, and put your famous painters to work again.
Step 5. Make sure the painters understand that subtlety is not a quality that impresses you.
Step 6. Do not forget to have your interior decorators match the bed canopies to the wall paper… as if that could happen… with French interior decorators…
Step 7. Bear in mind that every square inch of your big house must either be covered with gold, a rare fabric, fancy carvings, and/or a painting done by a famous artist… and need I remind you once again to not forget about the ancient god theme?
Step 8. The chandeliers should really tie together the bed canopies and the wall coverings… but once again, I am sure you can rely on those French interior decorators to be too worried about you having them executed if they let you down for this to be a problem.
Step 9. It is permissible to leave some ceilings unpainted and free of gold, as long as they are carved from rare imported marble and each individual panel costs more than a whole city full of peasants could conceivably earn in 20 lifetimes, but only if this disgustingly plain ceiling is located in a huge stairwell in the very back of the big house.
Step 10. Leave a few walls uncovered… as long as they are also made entirely of rare, imported marble… just to mix things up a little… you know… just so you do not appear too ostentatious.
Step 11. Don’t skimp on the really big doors in your really big house.
Step 12. Make sure your famous painters throw in plenty of topless women… but only tastefully painted topless women done in the theme of the ancient gods… because you do not want your big house to appear tacky. This isn’t a trailer park.
Step 13. Make sure you throw in some paintings of you and your relatives riding horses. Rich people and kings always have lots of horses. Everybody loves horses. I know I do.
Step 14. Make sure you let the peasants stop by now and then to gawk at your big house and your awesome French interior decorating… what is the point of even having a big house if you can’t enjoy the look on the peasants’ faces when they see it?
Step 15. Yes, you will need a very large table… or 5… or 12… for entertaining your friends… but set aside one small table for you and your queen to eat at… so that you can enjoy having and endless train of servants bring in an endless stream of rare and expensive foods… including, hopefully, some roasted endangered species… which you can then take one small nibble of before having another endless stream of servants remove the items and throw them in the trash. Nothing will impress your friends like this kind of disgusting display of cruelty and waste. Don’t forget the most important part of this ritual: do not supply them with chairs! This way, they have to stand for hours watching you not eat all this food. Trust me. After a few months of this, they will know their places in the grand scheme of things!
Step 16. Don’t forget to have your servants make your bed every morning! Because you big house will be built in such a way that for anyone to get anywhere they have to pass through endless rooms… (this is done to ensure that every time anyone visits you, they are reminded of your wealth, taste and refinement)… people are going to be passing through all 42 of your bedrooms to get to your 23 ballrooms, 14 sitting rooms, 19 formal dining rooms, and all the other dressing rooms and viewing rooms and sun rooms and so on as they struggle to find the room that you summoned them to by royal decree. Yes, this layout makes living in the big house irksome, and a nightmare for the servants and guests, but seriously, how else are you supposed to remind people you are just like the freekin’ King of France?
Step 17. If there is any room left at all in your big house, you can get a few comfortable chairs. Obviously I mean comfortable chairs for you and your queen, not the guests. Never let your guests sit down… except on very rare occasions when you decide to use one of the many formal dining rooms in your big house to have an actual formal dinner… which should, ideally, consist of serving enough rare foods to depopulate a small country of all its plants and animals… while you hold court and thrill your guests with hours-long stories about how awesome and rich you are. (If you were wondering about the two small chairs on either side of the big chair in the picture above, such chairs are not for your guests. They are for the servants who are fanning you with big palm leaves… or for your small, obnoxious dogs… or just to be left vacant… seriously, what part of ‘putting the common people’… and this obviously includes your closest friends and relatives… ‘in their place’ did you not understand???)