Posted by / Category Cultural Differences /

My Grandfather – No comments…

I started watching Homeland season 3 today. I had recorded it. I love this series. What surprised me is that Mira, Saul’s wife, is falling for her French colleague. She is clearly married but it didn’t deter then from having dinner (and possibly more) at her marital home. This made me wonder: are French men irresistible? Honestly, she must be pretty smitten to do this.

What makes French men so appealing? Is it a stereotype only? Come to think of it, well, I am not sure it is. I would know, I used to be surrounded by French men because I studied science. At some point, we were 3 girls out of 50 students. Ah, memories!

First of all, French men know how to dress. They are always immaculate and don’t do fashion faux pas such as wearing too many stripes or having sport socks with a business suit. Take note. They also seem to look good effortlessly. This is obviously not true. I had to give up having a shower in the morning because my husband spends forever in the bathroom. I shower in the evening. Sad but true. Relationships are about compromise. In France, in the UK and also anywhere else. Sigh.

French guys -young or old- also keep the door open for you. They wait for you even when you have to trot in high heels. They make it look completely natural. It doesn’t feel sexist or anything. They don’t slam the door in your face as is so often the case over here. They make sure that you go home safely after a night out, even if you are not particularly friendly. Not in the UK. A few years ago, after an office Christmas party, I was slightly drunk (you have to let your hair down sometimes, right?). My British colleagues didn’t make sure I managed to get back home. They couldn’t care less. This is something a French guy would not do, not even to his worst enemy. I am still shocked. They didn’t understand why I was a lot less nice to them the day after. They still don’t. Anyway: lesson learned – I don’t get drunk anymore. Or at least not with British guys

And then, there is the myth of the French lover. Ah, the French lover…according to some friends of mine, it is about the accent. I don’t get it. I don’t hear it. Maybe I am becoming cynical, after all. The french accent doesn’t do anything for me.

In short, yes, there is such a thing as a French identity. But French men being irresistible…I still think that Mira is making a huge mistake!

Muriel – A French Yummy Mummy In London
  • I not sure French Men are irresistible. For me I’m not one for national stereotypes but I could never get beyond the necklace of onions around the neck, the silly beret, the smell of garlic and gitanes……….. As for Irish men, c’est une autre histoire!

  • PS; Grandad is very handsome but it was wrong of him to borrow your face!!

  • Oh my Lord, you look just like your Grandad! And he looks like a celebrity! Hence, you look like a celeb too Muriel! As for you not seeing it / your questions towards the end of your post, I suppose it’s not any different with Superman if he were just living in Krypton, right? 😉

  • I think French men know how to make a woman feel beautiful and special, even if they don’t mean it. They just make you feel so wonderful. Yes, I dated French men when I lived in Paris in my 20’s.

  • Rohit Trilokekar

    I was in Paris when I was ten and a French girl kissed me on the cheek and i was red with embarassment.. people kissed openly in France too.. and that was new.. no wonder they call it ‘French kissing’… 🙂

  • Well, Rohit, French kissing is slightly different. That said, it is true that we French always kiss on the cheek!

  • Ah memories…glad you enjoyed the best Paris has to offer!

  • He looked really good, so thank you! And I don’t see myself as Superwoman…quite the opposite, in fact!

  • I know: he should have asked for my permission, right?

  • Really? Tell me, what are Irish men secret talents?

  • Marie

    Funny, I have another French friend who doesn’t hear the accent either. But let me just say, there’s something there!

  • Is there? Honestly, why does everybody love a French accent? I don’t get it!

  • I don’t find them irresistable, but you are dead on about politeness. This morning when I was wrestling my luggage up a small flight of stairs at Gare de Lyon, a group of three men rushed to my aid. I could have gotten the luggage up with a little effort, but with their help it was over in a second. Most of the time I find them much more polite than the men in the U.S. I say “merci beaucoup” to French mothers everywhere.

  • John Jackson

    ANY man can be irresistible, if he can show (and make you believe) he is interested in YOU (and that includes holding the door open, etc. which I was always taught was just “good manners”