Saturday, 26 February 2011

In which we may or may not give France a good shoeing

I've been thinking a lot about identity recently; having gone from Londoner, to Euro, to the impending weirdness of some transatlantic California hybrid (see Isadora Watt's Transatlantic Tales on this one, she's got it covered).

In anticipation of the census, the BBC (may god bless her and all that sail in her) are running a series of programmes about British national identity, putting questions to the nation that are far more telling than what religion you practice or what ethnic group box you tick on the form. It's fascinating.

Vanity Fair on the other hand explored the American sense of self this month in its 60 Minutes/Vanity Fair Poll that included interrogative gems such as: 'Which surname would you least like to have - Bin Laden or Hitler' and 'Prince William is tying the knot in April with Kate Middleton. Which of the following best describes your interest in the royal wedding?'.

But where does that leave my true sense of self?  Really, it's a simple sporting litmus test.

Look, I am even being nice, I picked a photo where France have the ball...

For the uninitiated amongst you, here's a flavour of how we Englishmen perceive our relationship with the French. 

That, my friends, is a thousand years of history right there.

So please, do take sides.  Kick off's at 17h London, 18h Paris, 8h Los Angeles. You have no excuse.

I see you stand like greyhounds in the slips,
Straining upon the start. The game's afoot:
Follow your spirit; and, upon this charge
Cry 'God for Harry! England and Saint George!'
Henry V, 3. 1


  1. Brilliant ad... But wasn't it for the euro match when France beat England?... and France had not yet completely dishonoured itself at football...
    Let's hope they do as well today in rugby... Allez les Bleus!
    Domestic harmony is being slightly upset this afternnon by the fact Romanian hubby is taking side for "les anglais" and wants baby to wear an English rugby shirt...
    So I am in full La Resistance mode!
    I may have to eat my red beret for dinner!

  2. "England 17-9 France: Fourie gets his mitts on the ball and goes on a rumble but that's the final act of the game - it was a pulsating one, and one that England marginally deserved to win. It wasn't pretty, but no-one can be pretty all the time." (BBC)

    How's domestic harmony working out for you? ;)

  3. Reconciliation sur l'oreiller... But little one did not wear the English jersey and it is now back in the drawer...But I am sure it will reappear for the rest of the matches :-)

  4. Those are the best kind of peace talks :)