As Dave Barry says, I'm not making this up. Among popular American pastimes, denouncing the French ranks up there with baseball, so it would be un-American not to denounce the French for this hateful atrocity.
What has often happened to me over the years is that, in attempting to explain and understand Frenchiness as a cultural phenomenon, I have exposed myself to charges of defending France -- indeed, some people have even gone so far as to accuse me of being de facto pro-French.
Well, the natural reaction to such a vile accusation is to deny it, to attempt to disassociate oneself from the despicable doctrine of Francophilia. Ah, but that approach never works.
Once you come under the penumbra of suspicion, you are guilty until proven innocent and every little item in your resume is examined from the accuser's perspective: Didn't you once wear a Pierre Cardin tie? And is it not a fact, sir, that you took two years of French in high school? What are we to make of the fact that you sometimes make reference to le mot juste and other such Frenchified notions?
Therefore, the correct response is to lean into the accusation. If it is absurd to say that I am a Francophile -- as I assure you it is -- then why not treat it as a joke?
Have fun with your oh-so-serious accusers with a bit of high-concept humor at their expense. Make a little double-entendre (oops!) playing with the accuser's Javert-like quest for the smoking gun -- j'accuse! -- that proves what a degenerate Frog-lover you really are.
What, then, shall I say about French Vogue displaying 26-year-old Dutch supermodel Lara Stone in blackface? To quote Ace of Spades: "I'd hit it."
I'll be in my bunk . . .
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