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  1. #26
    Studs Terkel Johnny_Monkey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by baj32161
    And those fries and mayo kick a$$!!!
    Pomme frites.

  2. #27
    Behind EVERYone!!! baj32161's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Johnny_Monkey
    Pomme frites.
    Yes Indeed!!! and I had them in Germany...and they KICKED A$$!!!!
    I wasn't quite sure I remembered how to spell them...and I didn't .
    A good teacher protects his pupils from his own influence.

    ― Bruce Lee

  3. #28
    Senior Member cyclezealot's Avatar
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    In the states, I despise French Fries. Here we crave them . They are actually cut from real potatos.
    What slays me. They see so much US media. They know the US media is full of crap. But, they also know about the stories such as the 'freedom fries' incidents. And the dumping of French wine.
    You'd think they would resent us. Not our experience. They have been nothing but welcoming and helpful. Ever single one .
    We tell them . What's the difference. Maybe the wine was wasted, but those fools still paid for it's importation.
    I just credit such foolishness to a media that causes such irrational behavior. They seem to understand.

  4. #29
    Senior Member 7rider's Avatar
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    In the states, I despise French Fries. Here we crave them . They are actually cut from real potatos.
    In-N-Out cuts fries from real potatoes. The average IQ and ability to understand English of an In-N-Out employee is also a lot higher than at other fast food chains - a big reason I go there since my order won't get screwed up.

  5. #30
    Dharma Dog lhbernhardt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SteveE
    WTF were you doing at a McD's in France, fer Cris'sake?!?!? Just going to McDonald's is enough of a bad experience... even in the States.
    Back in 1990, I rode the Masters World Cup in St. Johann, Austria. I screwed up the final kilomeers and finished around 33rd or so, so I just coasted past the finish line and kept rolling beyond St. Johann, warming down for about five kilometers to the next town, Kitzbuhel. There I stopped at the McD's, leaned the bike against the rail, went in and bought a beer, and came back out to relax in the warm sun.

    I really wish North Americans were cultured enough that they could sell beer at any McD's...

    Another story: Here in Canada, the two official languages are English & French. Since BC is 99% English, the public school system offers French Immersion all the way thru elementary school, and most Canadian-born parents are anxious to get their kids in, because the alternative is a classroom where most of the kids are from immigrant families and the teacher is spending lots of time teaching them just to speak English. But I digress. My daughter went thru French immersion, so her French is quite good, and she loves to travel. She went with a group on a European tour, and they happened to stop at the McD's on the Champs d'Elysees. So she chatted up the server, who was very polite and friendly, and then after giving her order, she turned to her friend and told her just to say "moi aussi" (me too). So the server cheerfully got them their orders and as they were leaving, the next person in line tried to give his order in English, and the server instantly became rude and arrogant.

    - L.

  6. #31
    genec genec's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cyclezealot
    In the states, I despise French Fries. Here we crave them . They are actually cut from real potatos.
    What slays me. They see so much US media. They know the US media is full of crap. But, they also know about the stories such as the 'freedom fries' incidents. And the dumping of French wine.
    You'd think they would resent us. Not our experience. They have been nothing but welcoming and helpful. Ever single one .
    We tell them . What's the difference. Maybe the wine was wasted, but those fools still paid for it's importation.
    I just credit such foolishness to a media that causes such irrational behavior. They seem to understand.
    When I visited the south of France last year we stayed with some friends in a house... and other French friends came and visited. Got into some very nice conversations about language and culture. One question that was asked a few times was "But don't American's hate us... yet everyone we talk to seems to love France."

    Of course the reply was easy... the fools that profess "hating" France are not likely to visit France, so the only Americans they (the French folks) had met were indeed the ones that did not have animosities toward the French.

    It is indeed strange that people can claim to hate this place or that place when they have never even gone beyond their own local borders to see how the rest of the world operates.

    I hear this quite often from folks about Mexico, which is a short hop from San Diego, that "they would never go," because "it is such an awful place... " yet indeed, how would they know?

  7. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by ZachS
    I spent three weeks in Paris last year, and the only experience I had that even approached rude behavior was when a businessman wouldn't tell my friends and I what time it was. Everybody else was extraordinarily kind and warm-hearted, in a very honest and genuine way - and I don't even speak French, except for a few phrases.

    They are:

    Bonjour, madame.
    Bonjour, monsieur.
    Un ______, sil vous plait.
    Merci beaucoup.
    Je ne parlais pas Francais.
    Parlez vous Anglais?

    That is literally all I knew, and all anybody needs to know. Most Parisians speak some English, and even though they don't like using it, they will if they like you.

    And they like people who make an effort. Americans heads would explode if people started talking to them in foreign languages.
    You haven't been to the WalMart in Lawrenceville, Georgia. Nobody speaks English.

  8. #33
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    7rider Please Explain The Comment Are You Taliking About History Hollywood Style??

  9. #34
    Senior Member zonatandem's Avatar
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    Why would anyone want to eat at McD's? French food is usually superb, especially in small restaurants.
    Agree you haven't eaten 'good' Frech fries until you've eaten them from a 'fritte' stand on the marketplace in Brugge!
    Many Americans do not even try to learn part of any language of any country they visit . . . 'Hey, speak English!'
    Had one comment from someone visiting Mexico: "Them Mexs are stupid . . . they don't speak English!' My reply: "How's your Spanish?'"All I got was an incredulous look!
    There are rude people all over the world . . . let's not be one of them!!!

  10. #35
    Senior Member gpelpel's Avatar
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    French people, in general, are very friendly and as nice as most people in the world. Same is true in US and in all countries.
    Regarding the Lance and Floyd opinions there won't be any contest, Floyd will be the favorite. In general French people don't like cocky, full of themselves persons. Lance has never been known to be very modest or humble. On the other hand Floyd seems to perfectly defined the people favorite mold.
    It reminds me how French people treated cycling champions of the past. When I started to follow the Tour it was the Anquetil-Poulidor era. Anquetil was the winner of most races but he never won the hearts of France. To this day Poulidor is, by far, the favorite French cyclist; even now, decades after he stopped racing. Hinault won 5 Tours and fared the same fate as Anquetil, same for Merckx.
    What is common to Lance, Hinault, and Merckx in their racing days? The same cockiness, the same self-assurance of being the best in the business, the same tendency to crash their rivals with uncanny easiness. In general regular people don't like this kind of people, in cycling and in other sports as well (Bjorn Borg in tennis is a good example), and in all sort of lifes.
    It's the eternal David vs. Goliath story. Floyd is still like David, he is human, has ups and downs, gets crashed one day but his heart is so big that he gets the final victory. How he handles fame and success will dictate his public image.

  11. #36
    Veni, Vidi, Vomiti SteveE's Avatar
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    The only rude Frenchmen I have encountered have been employees of le chemin de fer in the train stations. Well, they weren't exactly rude, either. Just frustrated with my lack of comprehension of their language.

    Whenever I travel overseas for pleasure, I make an attempt to learn at least of few phrases in the native language: "How much is that?", "Where is _______?", "Do you have ______", "I would like [some] ______?", "Where is ______?". "Thank you", "Please", "The check, please", "nn beers, please." In France, as elsewhere, you gain some respect for at least trying to say a few words in their language.

    I remember having a conversation, in french, about the availability of rooms at a hotel in Amboise on the Loire. After some discussion with the lady behind the desk, I turned to my companion, who knew no French, and started to explain about the rooms. The lady of the hotel, in perfect English, started correcting me about the number and type of beds in each of the rooms. My friend was flabbergasted. The lady explained that since I was conversing in French, and at least appeared to understand, she was perfectly happy to speak in French. However, her English was much better than my French.
    "Life's journey is not to arrive at the grave safely in a well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, totally worn out, shouting ...'holy *****...what a ride!'"

  12. #37
    Senior Member cyclezealot's Avatar
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    Seventh Rider. I think the other difference in pomme fritte. Not only real potatos, but the way they are cooked. Here, mostly in sunflower or olive oil. They come out really moist. Also, not deep fried.
    Genec. The thing about French thinking they are hated by Americans. So maybe , as you say, a lot of AMericans stay out of France because they hate the French.
    Not really. MOst Americans just don't travel. I hope.
    But, so the Americans who come here are the only ones who are fair to the French. ? How do you explain that, when many say - they'd like to visit the US. ? Are they to be assaulted because they speak French.?
    My explaination. Our redicilious media whips up a minority , who do not represent anywhere near a majority of Americans. ( Heah- I am helping to boost Tourism to America. Particularily California. )
    I hope that is the case. I hate for them to think 33% of Americans will not visit France because the French are hated ! I tell them otherwise.
    One difficult explanation. US news coverage is pretty good here. They hear of the ocassional attacks on US cyslists. I have been an assaulted US cyclist. They know an assaliant on Lance is now in a Texas prison. as an example.
    New Friends ask, 'Am I safe to bring my bike to the US.' They have a 'wild west' fear of life in the US to start with. And, 'Why are you here. Is not California cycling incredible.?' NOt sure what to tell them? I have to be truthful on that one.

  13. #38
    Senior Member cyclezealot's Avatar
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    I just found a very interesting article somewhat related to the topic here. I suggest it would be good for all Americans to correct ( if nothing else, maybe help out our trade deficit.) by clearing up our hopefully, misunderstood international image. The article from Reuters,
    "Anti-Americanism prompts push for Citizen Diplomacy.'
    The American people do not deserve this. Not the first time this has been the case. Americans were maligned in the 50's. I think it unfair. I do not agree with it either. Not my expereince, so far.
    But, I hate to think individual Americans suffer because of poorly perceived US policies. I hope we all want to do our part to correct this possible stereotype against us as people.
    Don't blame the French. Note the World Cup officials asked the US flag not be displayed in Germany.
    Some of you may not care. That only hurts yourself. Does not have to be that way.
    What do you think of this articles' suggestions.
    Link below.
    http://today.reuters.com/news/newsAr...domesticNews-3

    By Bernd Debusmann, Special Correspondent

    WASHINGTON (Reuters) - With anti-American sentiment at unprecedented levels around the world, Americans worried about their country's low standing are pushing a grassroots campaign to change foreign perceptions of the United States "one handshake at a time."

    The idea is to turn millions of Americans into "citizen diplomats" who use personal meetings with foreigners to counter the ugly image of the United States shown in a series of international public opinion polls. They show widespread negative attitudes not only toward U.S. policies but also toward the American people and, increasingly, even American products.

    To stem the relentless decline of America's international standing -- a dramatic change from the almost universal sympathy for the country immediately after the September 11 attacks on New York and Washington --leaders of more than 30 civic organizations formed a "Coalition for Citizen Diplomacy" two years ago.

  14. #39
    genec genec's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cyclezealot
    Seventh Rider. I think the other difference in pomme fritte. Not only real potatos, but the way they are cooked. Here, mostly in sunflower or olive oil. They come out really moist. Also, not deep fried.
    Genec. The thing about French thinking they are hated by Americans. So maybe , as you say, a lot of AMericans stay out of France because they hate the French.
    Not really. MOst Americans just don't travel. I hope.
    But, so the Americans who come here are the only ones who are fair to the French. ? How do you explain that, when many say - they'd like to visit the US. ? Are they to be assaulted because they speak French.?
    My explaination. Our redicilious media whips up a minority , who do not represent anywhere near a majority of Americans. ( Heah- I am helping to boost Tourism to America. Particularily California. )
    I hope that is the case. I hate for them to think 33% of Americans will not visit France because the French are hated ! I tell them otherwise.
    One difficult explanation. US news coverage is pretty good here. They hear of the ocassional attacks on US cyslists. I have been an assaulted US cyclist. They know an assaliant on Lance is now in a Texas prison. as an example.
    New Friends ask, 'Am I safe to bring my bike to the US.' They have a 'wild west' fear of life in the US to start with. And, 'Why are you here. Is not California cycling incredible.?' NOt sure what to tell them? I have to be truthful on that one.

    You are right about most Americans not traveling... back in my college days in the '90s I came across an interesting statistic... something like only 15% of the population has passports. Only about 20% of the population has a college degree. Says something about the overall population of the US I think... sadly.

  15. #40
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    The McDs on the Champs in Paris has to be one of the busiest in the world
    So I can understand the short tempers of the kids who work there.Almost without fail most euros can handle french when ordering, and do.So simple, just look up at the menu board and at least try to pronounce the items, The kids are always patient inspite of the crowds. I stopped there the Sunday in '04 when the TdeF was ending a total madhouse but with a dozen languages being spoken on the customer side and mostly English n French on the other no one lost a temper.. Yeh I stop at McDs when travelin, hot hot afternnons the only place to get something cold. le milkshake!!

    If I could handle giving up my li'l dog I'd be traveling or living over there now

  16. #41
    Senior Member Shemp's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by genec
    You are right about most Americans not traveling... back in my college days in the '90s I came across an interesting statistic... something like only 15% of the population has passports. Only about 20% of the population has a college degree. Says something about the overall population of the US I think... sadly.
    Seeing that even now you can travel all of North America without a passport, that's hardly a fair comparison. You can travel the same distance in the US as you could in Europe, but without the need to show your passport 5 or 6 times. Obviously it's also much cheaper to go from Spain to France to Germany than from Omaha to Paris.

    Sure the culture doesn't change quite as much, but the difference from Maine to Michigan to Colorado to California is quite different in and of itself. I don't think you can blame Americans for not being as well-traveled as Europeans who come from smaller countries. Besides, if I travel in the US, my travel dollars help out fellow Americans. Sure, that might be a little provincial, but I don't think that's wrong or bad either.

    And conversely, one of the cable news shows went to France in the past year to get opinions of Americans. For every ignorant American who disliked the French, there was an equal in France disliking Americans. Bottom line, every country has more than it's share of jackasses.
    Last edited by Shemp; 07-26-06 at 06:48 PM.

  17. #42
    Senior Member SaintAndrew's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by genec
    It is even more enlightening when you look at a French book on language and see so many familiar words and realize that often we are simply throwing their language back at them, only very badly pronounced. The word "direction" for instance is exactly the same but pronouned differently. Symmpathetic is similar but with a "que" at the end. "sympathique" Solvent is close... "dissolvant."

    Of course the arrangement of the sentences is a bit different also... as are the use of words with male and female roots... thus la and le can be quite confusing.
    not to be mean but your logic is a little what we call "********" in english.

  18. #43
    Senior Member Tom Pedale's Avatar
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    I lived in France for 3 1/2 years and in the former french colony of Niger as a member of the Peace Corps for 2 years. I agree with the numerous posts here that the quality of your international experience will have more to do with the respect that you have for people in general. Inaccurate and ugly stereotypes (fill in the blank with the country of your choice) are used by people who don't have the desire or patience to learn about other cultures. Personally, when I'm reading these forums, I cringe when I see negative, ugly terms such as frog, ****, etc used to describe the citizens of another country. Peace is fragile. Individuals have the power to build a stronger world just by being open to the possibility that despite being from different countries with varying customs and languages, we have the ability to see the many things that we have in common as human beings.
    "Learn how to handle hot things. Keep your knives sharp. And above all, have a good time" - Julia Child

  19. #44
    Senior Member cyclezealot's Avatar
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    Someone said, travel overseas is too expensive to experience. Often we found flights from LA to London only like $300 more. Winter rates , they can be a steal.
    We have seen 47 states. Time to see some additional countries while still on this planet.
    Travel is one of the greatest gift's granted to us. Little is as mind expanding.
    Nothing against a vacation in Des Moines. I've been there. But, the hotels of Des Moines are far more expensive than the average b and b in the French country side. And the cycling , manifique.
    If American's traveled more, there'd be hope they loose some of their provincialness.

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