Wednesday, June 15, 2011

The French out-French themselves

My phone was buzzing just now, and I realized that, given how hopeless I've been at entering the numbers of the admittedly limited number of people I know in Paris into my phone here, there was a decent chance this was not a wrong number. I said hello, then heard the other end hang up. Then saw I had a text message. An apology for misdialing... and a remark to let me know that I have a nice voice.

(I will not get into the lack of toilet paper - again! - in one of the stalls, with the other one fast running out, or the drunken man yelling, possibly in German, audible even with the window closed. Perhaps one of the goals of this exchange, in which the 30-ish live in dorms, is to make American profs of French happy to live in remote parts of the U.S., where one can have a large house, a general lack of seduction-culture, and all the toilet paper one has ever dreamed of.)

2 comments:

Daniel Goldberg said...

Seduction-culture?

Say more, please.

(The thing that pops into my head, appropriately enough for Francophilic Zionism, is the repeated warnings given to girls on my summers and semesters in Israel, regarding the proclivities of Israeli men. Obviously, a lot there to unpack).

Phoebe said...

"Say more, please."

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/06/16/books/elaine-sciolinos-seduction-dissects-the-french-review.html?hpw

Re: Israeli guys... this is the plot of a truly fantastic episode of "The Nanny" - Fran, turns out, long ago lost her virginity on a kibbutz, and then Maggie looks primed to do the same, with the son of Fran's first. The puzzling question is what purpose the strapping male (and female, but there's a serious machismo angle) IDF soldiers have on Birthright Israel trips. If the point is to make American Jews want to marry their fellow American Jewish trip participants, what's the advantage of juxtaposing much fitter, sexily-uniformed young men and women, who, though Jewish, are unlikely to begin serious relationships with random pasty American Jews? Yes, it sends the message that Jews can be conventionally hott, but does not make the ones who are viable romantic possibilities look good.