Ok so we have to admit that we Brits are at our core, far too fond of the notion of Empire. Our homes are our castles and we are on the quiet, obsessed by being landowners and prefixing Britain with Great at every opportunity. Still, finding yourself on the wrong end of British empirical arrogance can’t be worse than being landed with a 1000 year old inferiority complex, can it?
After all it is all down to the same cause, a Dark Ages Brit abroad creating the plot line for any number of romantic novels and chic flicks.. And it was a very long time ago. What can we possibly find to dislike about each other in todays enlightened world?
A Daily Telegraph in an article titled ‘What the French really think of us’ , reports they are pretty ambivalent about us Brits per se , but fascinated by our royalty (isn’t everyone) and impressed by our popular music. They get our sense of humour, but reckon we need it. We are considered reserved, self- deprecating and easily pleased with a sense of fair play. On the other hand they consider our tea ‘tannic muck’ (treason surely) and can’t understand why we boil broccoli. Their view of British women is well… uncharitable
“Your women!” says a French woman. “The older ones all have hip problems, ill-fitting clothes and hair like helmets. And the young ones go out half-naked.” This strikes the French as odd in a nation otherwise so prudish. “On the beach, English people wriggle inside long ponchos to get changed,” says Valérie from Avignon. “This is ridiculous. No French person has done that since 1970.”
Our view of French women is no more considerate. We think they don’t bathe every day or change their undies, but by far the hardest to swallow is the suggestion that they don’t get fat.