How To Be French
One week until we leave for Paris. Meanwhile, the ever-helpful Paul Rudnick channels the voice of a French woman. Excerpt:
To maintain my figure, I eat only half portions of any food, always arranging it on my plate in the shape of a semicolon. For exercise, at least once a day I approach a total stranger and slap him. And late each afternoon I read a paragraph of any work of acclaimed American literary fiction, which makes me vomit.
As for family life, Americans are far too concerned with a child’s self-esteem and accomplishments. The French woman knows that to build a child’s inner strength it is best either to completely ignore the child or to belittle him. As I was giving birth to my daughter, I refused to put down my copy of French Vogue. When it was over, I turned to my husband and remarked, “I have just had an unusually large bowel movement that will never be as attractive as me.” During my son’s thirteenth-birthday party, I ordered him to remove all his clothing, and I told the assembled guests, “You see? That is why we raised him as a girl.” My wisdom can be traced to the influence of my own mother. When I was five years old, I asked her, “What is love?” She took my small, flowerlike face in her slender hands and replied, “What do I look like, Yoda?”
UPDATE: Cool Paris vs. New York video: