French Anecdotes – Take Three

The French are famous for their aversion to other languages and their inferiority complex when it comes to the French language. Internet censorship of sites with non-French language content has been raised. Having traveled in France, I can attest to that. The French will let you stumble along with your French, even if their English is excellent, just to make you squirm.

This is true for shopping, hotels, restaurant and other service organizations. It’s not true for families. Being invited for dinner at a French family is a pure delight. Of course, in that case, they usually don’t know any language other than French, and you’re still stuck. However, no matter how rudimentary your French when you walk in the door, after the second course of dinner and the fifth glass of wine, you will at least THINK you speak fluent French, and all their jokes make perfect sense. French families are wonderful hosts.

Here is an anecdote to that effect:

A U.S. Navy admiral was attending a naval conference that included admirals from the U.S., English, Canadian, Australian and French Navies. At a cocktail reception, he found himself standing with a large group of officers that included personnel from most of those countries. Everyone was chatting away in English as they sipped their drinks but a French admiral suddenly complained that, whereas Europeans learn many languages, Americans learn only English. He then asked: “Why is it that we always have to speak English in these conferences rather than speaking French?”

Without hesitating, the American admiral replied: “Maybe it’s because the Brits, Canadians, Aussies and Americans arranged it so you wouldn’t have to speak German.”

One thought on “French Anecdotes – Take Three

  1. Amanda

    Absolutely Right! I wish more people would stand for our country. Being an ex Soldier, I was ready to die for my country because it meant so much that those back home continue to have their freedoms!

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