Wednesday, May 11, 2022

La France

Camus (photo: The New Yorker)

It used to be that learned folks would populate their sentences with French phrases. “Faux de mieux,” "for want of something better," was a popular one. The expression was Bovaryesque. Is it really better to end one’s notes “je t'embrace” as is done by those who attend The Odeon, the Tribeca fixture, named after the Paris landmark? There was a period not "entre les deus gueres," but during the 70s and 80s when American chains like McDonalds were invading, bringing with them catchy Americanism which made many members of the prestigious Academie Francaise flinch. In l994 the Toubon Law, aimed at protecting the integrity of the French language, was passed by the Parlement francais. But why are Francophiles more annoying than their counterparts? The answer may rest in the lack of equanimity between the two cultures. America is still a step child to culture and particularly cuisine;  French babies are bottle fed Pouilly Fuisse. The French even possess a signature form of kissing. And let’s talk about French writers and politicans. Would you rather be Camus or Hemingway, Bernard Henri-Levy or Bob Woodward? In the latter case probably Bob Woodward since he’s sold more books. Remember the elegant SS France, decommissioned in l936? 

read "Diasporic Dining: A Comparison Between Bouley and Lunetta" by Francis Levy, HuffPost

and watch the animation of Erotomania

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