By: Muriel Every time I watch a TV series, there is a French man having an affair with one of the main characters. Well, obviously, since I moved to London, things have changed quite a bit. 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.
However Muriel has clearly done her research and I defer to her entertaining experience in this field! They wait for you even when you have to trot in high heels. They make sure that you go home safely after a night out, even if you are not particularly friendly. 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. This is something a French guy would not do, not even to his worst enemy. They didn't understand why I was a lot less nice to them the day after. Anyway: lesson learned - I don't get drunk anymore. The accent All my female friends say that, whenever they hear a guy speak with a French accent, they melt. There is one thing I'd love to compare: the British and the American men, since I have lived in California for over 30 years now, and married an American. What happened to the old rule that they needed to be clearly identifiable by wearing a beret, having a necklace of onions and puff on Gitanes? Chivalry French guys -young or old- also keep the door open for you. They don't slam the door in your face as is so often the case over here. When I hear a French guy speak English, I automatically switch to French. I am going to share this link with a French girlfriend who lived in London with her Irish husband for a while. I am surprised things haven't changed though, especially regarding the younger British men being a little more upfront when they like a woman, or perhaps their sense of style improving. Drinking Preferences Well, this is pretty straightforward. Beer in England pre-dates other alcoholic drinks produced in England. And when they don’t drink beer, British men usually have a cup of tea. I really enjoyed what you wrote and from my limited perspective, it rings true. Having lived in France and the UK, (35 years ago,)I agree with everything in Muriel's post. Let’s just say that French men usually laugh at someone else’s expenses;5. The dating game Every month or so, one of my friends comes to cry on my shoulder because she fancies a British guy and he hasn’t made a move yet. When they make the cardinal mistake of trying to make the first move, the guys usually chicken out. I am American and have worked with both French and British men.
It keeps me busy for the whole day, trying to figure out what he means. It can be dry, sarcastic and at first it might not even sound funny, but I usually get it a bit later. Well, British guys aren’t, and my friends never seem to know where they stand. Given the countless heartbreaks this situation seems to have caused, I am therefore taking the liberty of giving some free advice to British guys out there: make a move now (especially if your first name starts with G. They never ever have a coat on, even during the cold British winter. It is a case of successful adaptation to adverse weather conditions; What are your views? It was only when I went to England that I was entertained to flirtatious badinage. I must be someone who attracts exceptions to the rule because my dearly beloved dislikes being snappily dressed and spends all his time in synthetic black tee shirts and easy-wash trousers. On the other hand, my eldest son is very smooth with girls and always has been. Well, they do say that opposites attract: maybe that explains the cross-Channel entente cordiale :-) According to my observations, I agree with most of your points except the dating game - I found English men just as forward and sleazy as I found French men, and Italian men, and a lot of men for that matter...maybe its me! What I love even more is when a British guy says something that can mean one thing and its complete opposite, like ‘I don’t disagree’. Sense of humour It took me a while to get it –and sometimes I still don’t-, but there is such a thing as a British sense of humour. Most British men have this amazing ability to laugh at themselves, warts and all. French men are always wrapped up to keep warm, whereas British men run in short pants even when it is snowing. In fact, I was regarded as an amoeba by all the French men around me. ) I, on the other hand, do not behave like a Frenchwoman, and regularly get told off for my windswept hair, burping and mismatching socks. Some women find British men’s clumsiness old-fashioned and charming, others can’t run away fast enough from what they perceive to be a sexist way to behave. As for French men, well, let’s just say that most of them are very much at ease around women. Cold British men are so used to the cold that they don’t feel it any more. When I was married I didn't get one single proposition to have an affair. I enjoyed this very much - particularly because I wanted to see a French woman's appraisal of British males :-) My French husband lines up with most of the above - tidy appearance, and more of a gentleman than most men I met in Britain (where on earth did England get its reputation for chivalry? Some British men are still ill at ease around women, because they are not used to interacting with them. Well, it is not the case in France, where boys and girls are educated together. Do not think that you will be able to watch anything on the telly during the Ashes. Education Most schools are single sex this side of the channel.