Wednesday, December 27, 2006

War and glasses

Rumours have been circulating in the press and elsewhere that one of the first acts of a Latrine presidency in France would be to declare war on Britain.
Not only that but I have lost my glasses.
So let me make a couple of things absolutely clear (as we politicians say).
First, the war thing. It so happened that at one point I was chatting with a cove of my acquaintance (and fellow member of my almost-all-conquering pub quiz team) about my campaign, and he suggested that if I do become President of France, I could declare war on Britain.
Being a fair minded sort of chap I weighed the potential advantages of such a course and agreed that it would at least give everyone the opportunity to sort things out 'once and for all'.
This was by way of being an assessment of a proposal, rather than a firm statement of support for the idea.
Since then, I have had high-level policy discussions with my policy advisers (or wonks as I am wont to call them) and have decided that a firm plank of the Latrine Campaign is not declaring war on Britain, or indeed on most countries around the world.
Can't be clearer than that really, can I.
Now as far as the glasses are concerned, hereby hangs a tail.
I lost my glasses here in France. The following day, having exhausted most possible avenues for reuniting myself with my specs, I went to the Tourist Office of the place where I had lost them, it's not a big place so the Tourist Office serves additional functions, such as lost property.
There I asked the lady behind the counter if anyone had handed in my glasses.
Before reading on, you might want to ponder what you would have said and done if you had been that lady behind the counter. To inform your pondering you might want to remember that you are paid reasonable money to help and inform the travelling public.
If you have any experience of France, you might also like to ponder what the likely response to my question was.
I may be unusual, but to the first bit of pondering I come up with an answer that would include checking with my colleagues to see if anything had been handed in, enquiring as to further particulars about the circumstances of the loss and taking contact details for the glassesless person in the event that they did turn up.
Unfortunately those with experience of France will know that this would have been immeasurably far too much to expect.
Instead the lady (pleasantly, I hasten to add) said "Non" and seemed to think that this was sufficient and adequate response. I left feeling that it was a distinct possibility that if she had found the glasses herself, rather than having them handed in, the response would have been the same and it would have served me right for asking the wrong question.
So there you have it, a couple of hints as to what France will be like when I'm in charge:

  • we won't go to war with Britain
  • we will be more helpful to people who have lost their glasses
Thank you for listening
LibEgFrat to you all
Victor

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

Merci Victor, comme je te l'ai déjà dit, tu m'a réconcilié avec les "citoyens Britanniques". En plus, malgré "quelques" errements dans la compréhension de ton message (mon anglais est trop pauvre "l'exception française sans doute"...), cela me fait du bien et aussi quelques regrets de constater comme tu connais bien notre pays et ses dérives...je te donne 100 % de ma voix pour le prochain vote. Bisous beau blond et la prochaine fois, autour d'un bon vin à bulles, traduction obligatoire en raison de mon incompétence dans la langue de Shakespeare. (à propos, nous disons : une banlieue, des banlieues...) LibEgFrat.

BuBu said...

Mr Latrine,
As the future French president and of course based on your great knowledge of the French people, you certainly noticed that we (I am a French citizen as well) are fund of camping. Just have a look on the audience for "Camping" movie featuring G. Lanvin and F. Dubosc or the resent enthusiasm of the whole press, politic, people regarding the Don Quichotte camp site in Paris. Now each and every city wants its Don Quicotte camp site in font of each town hall. So my question is: as the next president, to be close to the french people, will you prefer to live in a tent (of course large and confortable) rather than the "palais de l'élysée" ? And also the "champ de Mars" has to be turned into a giant camping site. The "paris plage" is already installed along the Seine river.
Bye for now, I need set up my tent in front of my house / BuBu

Nerde said...

Victor’s reappearance does at least answer one very pertinent question – which is why I couldn’t find him in the so call Republic of Monaco. Because if he had been there I would have found him. Every day without fail I followed leads by engaging in conversation while ‘playing the tables’ but to my surprise not a single person had even heard of Victor let alone his whereabouts.

Recent developments here have led me to conclude that it is unwise for la Belle France to have this parasite of country attached to its belly. Everyone knows that ‘high spenders’ are not asked to actually pay for their rooms and meals, as they are in effect paying their way while gaming. However when I informed the management of the establishment where I was staying of this customary piece of basic etiquette when they presented me with the most outrageous bill I have ever seen, they actually laughed in my face.

An encounter a little later in the bar with a Russian gentleman who listened patiently to the whole story about Victor’s disappearance and the arrival of funds from the Narodny bank, seemed to sort the problem out when he offered to pay the bill for me. It was only two days later when he came to collect the ‘debt’ as he called it with ‘interest’ – 100% a day – and informed me that my ability to walk a day longer was in doubt - that I realised that my new friend was in fact what we term Russian mafia.

So when I finally meet up with Victor I am going to urge the following policy measures on him:

1. Declare War on Monaco.
2. Clamp down on the activities of Russian criminals in France.
3. Make a law making the giving of a lift to a clearly respectable man in a dinner jacket who is hitchhiking though France obligatory (with the exception of a certain drunk driver of a pig lorry in the Provence region).

I hardly need tell you that the funds that were in abundance have now all been spent in my tireless search for Latrine and therefore urge you all to dig deep in your pockets so that we are ready and prepared for the final push.

Nerde