Maîtres mots

  • Il y a longtemps que notre pays est beau mais rude.

       --Newspaper editor Olivier Séguret, 25 January 2012

    The USA are entirely the creation of the accursed race, the French.

       --Evelyn Waugh (1903-1966), writing to Nancy Mitford, 22 May 1957

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French Freedom of Speech

Today the cheminots are:

  • "À nous de vous faire préférer le train!"
    "Voyager autrement"
    "Avec le SNCF, tout est possible"
      --Former ad slogans of the SNCF (French national trains), each in turn quickly dropped

Fun French words

  • ouistiti

    (literally: marmoset)
    Etymology: onomatopoeia from the sound a marmoset makes. Actual meaning: this is what you say in France when you want people to smile for the camera.

    Selon une étude réalisée par le fabricant d’appareils photo Nikon, le « ouistiti » utilisé en France au moment de se faire prendre en photo est le petit mot le plus efficace pour s’assurer un joli sourire.

Who's en colère today?

  • Private sector

    First strike in 43 years at an aeronautics company in Toulouse, Latécoère

    Public sector

    The SNCF (toujours eux), regional train employees in the Lyons area guaranteeing unpleasant travel from the 17th-21st December
    Also yet another strike by Sud-Rail, a particularly truculent SNCF union in the south of France, this time five days in January: 6,7, 21, 22 and 23. "We have no choice." Right.

    Marseilles trams on strike until February

Go back to school in Paris!

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Ah yes, we Americans love our flag and are proud of our patriotism. I didn't really realize how many flags were on display, until I visited back home last November.

France has their fair share of flags on display too, but the US still has them beat! =o)

Amazing isn't it?

I would say that perhaps France doesn't have as much to be proud about these days?

Also, God bless Americans but .. for the most part if you ask someone the meaning behind the flag as a symbol you will get as thoughtful a response as asking 99% of the young black kids you encounter what the "X" on their ballcap means.

Before somebody gets to twisted up over their own interpretation of it all, never underestimate the superficiality of fashion.

Since, "Comments are moderated, and will not appear on this weblog until the author has approved them."

Let me butter you up a bit. Rue Rude is a pleasant little aside that I have enjoyed reading and the photos since discovering it a few months back.
I returned from a very pleasant three week working vacation in Lyon last December.

A-political observations are a rarity in the blogosphere. Keep up the good work!


The French have actually never put out flags, except on government buildings. Even the French revolution is still controversial in some circles in France. I met an American woman who was wearing an Hermes scarf that had been issued in honor of the 200th anniversary of the Revolution. Her French inlaws were scandalized that she would wear it. They were on the side of the ancien regime.

For the comments, I intend to publish all comments except for ads, insults and obscenities.

About the american flag... Perhaps it is too much patriotism, but may be is there another reason : this flag is really beautifull ! It's one of my favourite with the south african one. I think it is much more decorative than the french one which, with only three band of colour, is quite common (how many flags have three bands of colours).

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Today's quotation

  • In Paris, the purest virtue is the object of the filthiest slander.

      –Honoré Balzac (1799-1850), in Scènes de la vie privée

    À Paris, la vertu la plus pure est l'objet des plus sales calomnies.

Le petit aperçu d'Ailleurs

  • Annual Geminids meteor shower (shooting stars!) coming this weekend, if it's not too cloudy out at night.

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