14 August 2013

Silly Season, n’est-ce pas?

The British newspapers call August the silly season – all the people who matter are away including the senior editorial staff – and some funny stories get run. This year the Guardian is probably well out in front with Suzanne Moore’s 10 rules for managing your penis, but there’s still time for the others to catch up.

The Times last week led its second section, Times 2 with a typical silly season filler from its energetic Paris correspondent, Adam Sage, about the identity crisis engulfing French men. It seemed to have spurred an editorial identity crisis as well: the Times 2 cover (left) was Sacré bleu! French men in crisis, the story inside being headed The Secret’s out: French men have feelings too, but on The Times website (£) the same piece was more racily titled ‘She came, she bonked, she left’ - new generation of assertive women create a crisis of virility for French men.

Alongside Sage’s article there was an amusing table (right) contrasting the attitudes to wine, women and other things of what were identified as the Traditional and the New Frenchman. A couple of the topics echoed the content of posts here. In July I commented on the film Before Midnight:
Finally, why is Jesse so messily dressed? Unlikely for an author in his forties with an international reputation living in Paris – surely Celine would have taken him to Le Bon Marché!
According to The Times, however:
The traditional Frenchman buys his clothes from Le Bon Marché, the department store on the Left Bank.  
The new Frenchman buys his clothes in American Apparel in the Marais on the Right Bank.
All I will say is that the shops in the Marais are on the small side compared with the new basement in Le Bon Marché – but it might explain the modernisation of the latter, posted about last year.

I can well believe from my own observations that:
The traditional Frenchman holidays at his €700,000 villa in Le Cap-Ferret on the Atlantic Coast.  
The new Frenchman spends his holidays trying to restore the disused farmhouse he bought for €70,000 in the village of his ancestors in La Creuse département in central France.
Cap Ferret in SW France was one of the settings for Guillaume Canet’s 2010 film, Little White Lies, posted about here two years ago. I prefer the Ile de Ré!


No comments:

Post a Comment