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An average French guy explains French culture

I’ve found an “Ask Me Anything” session (AMA) with a friendly Frenchman who explains French culture from his own perspective. The following quotes are edited for length and content, like a TV movie, so be warned if you go to read the source.

 

Q: Why were all the French folks I encountered in Nice/Antibes/Cannes really nice to me, but then the Parisian ones generally ignored or were a giant [bunch of jerks]? Are they just fed up with Americans visiting Paris vs in the south, things are a bit more laid back and not so crazy?
French Guy (FG): They are known for that. They think France = Paris and everything around is just cows and incest families.But they are like a tribe, if you follow their customs (never smile !) you’ll be one of them.

 

Q: How do the French feel about the fact that the English mock them relentlessly?

FG: This is an endless cycle, they moke [sic] us, we moke belgian, belgian mokes dutch, etc…
But to be honest, we don’t really care.

 

Q: Is it true that public sector workers in particular will take massive 2 hour lunches, eating a full meal at a restaurant and then basically doing no work for the rest of the day?

FG: True story. And apparently this makes them sick more often !

Follow-up Q: Heh, so is it just accepted behavior?

FG: I have exaggerated. The firm’s culture between public and private is really different. In a private firm, everything is about performance. In a public firm, it’s almost impossible to be fired and you have no real stress from anyone. They are the most secure jobs of France, but it’s not really easy to have a job here. And you’re less paid btw.

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