Sunday, June 6, 2010

Four Questions

I have to give a shout-out here to what could be the funniest blog and writer I have come across on the internet. Laughing-out-loud 100% guaranteed:

Now, on to my four questions. Number one: Why is this night different from...

Just kidding.

My questions relate not to Passover, but to French culture. Truth be told, I have many, many questions about the culture I am currently living among. But in the interest of time, I have narrowed them down to four general topics that have left me dumbfounded. They are as follows:

1. The French Shower. What’s the deal? Why is it the norm here in Paris to install a shower hose, but without a wall mount to hold the hose in place? Or a shower curtain, for that matter? Don’t the French get how much water and time can be saved by a hands-free shower? Maybe I am all too heavily influenced by my "Conserve Water! California is facing a drought!" childhood, but France is a progressive society, all about saving the Earth and whatnot. Imagine the efficiency that would result if I were able to wash my hair with two hands, rather than one? Shave my legs without having to hold the shower hose with one hand and try to balance with the other? And imagine the amount of conservation if there was a shower curtain that kept water inside the shower, rather than letting it spew all over the bathroom floor?

2. Pharmacies. In all fairness I have never thoroughly read The New Testament (go figure) but I have to wonder if somewhere along the way, God granted France the right to perfect health on Sundays. This would be the only sensible explanation to the fact that on Sundays, along with everything else (from grocery stores to my beloved Sephora) pharmacies are closed for business. How can this be? Are the French fortunate enough to never get sick on a Sunday? Do sneezing allergy attacks, stomach flues and splitting migraine headaches only occur Monday through Saturday?

3. Sex. (Now that got your attention, didn’t it?) We have all heard the stereotype about the French man who has more than one – sometimes many – lovers simultaneously, whether he is married, single or otherwise. (And let's remember that stereotypes exists for a reason.) So here’s what I want to know: do French women put up with such nonsense because they are totally OK with it? Or do they feel they have no choice, as though it’s some cultural norm they simply need to accept? Or do French women and wives have many lovers of their own? (Which would at least be fair!) Or none of the above?

And my fourth question goes to back to trying to understand why and how French children are so well behaved - see previous post. (Additional note on this topic: last night I attended a dinner party in a beautiful apartment in the 19th. The hosts have a three-month-old baby. They put her down to sleep around 9 PM. When I left the party, somewhere around 2 AM, she was still sleeping. Apparently she sleeps through the night, already at 3 months. More proof that French children are perfect.)

Without a doubt, my four questions require further investigation. Which is why I will be returning to Paris after the FSOA in Chicago. Inquiring minds want to know, and there is research to be done! Check back here as answers unfold to these pressing questions.


  1. Came across your blog through Life after Jer. Funny about the French questions.
    Hoping your OA went well... I think your date has passed... best wishes.

    -from another "EJ"

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  3. Well there's "permanence" pharmacies on Sunday ;)

    And for sex it's a stereotype, DSK is not the norm!


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