A look at issues of today: English aren’t a French person’s cup of tea

PUBLISHED: 12:00 13 October 2018


When I perform at stand up comedy clubs I have one rule: use the gents before the gig.

If you don’t, you run the risk of being in one of the traps after your set where you could overhear people talking about what they really thought of you.

It’s like reading someone’s diary, finding out the unfiltered truth about others’ opinion of you is unlikely to end well and that is what happened with a new study looking at what other countries in Europe think of the English.

Many of us would have assumed we were well liked. I know you can’t dine out on what happened during the Second World War too much but it’s always felt like we were the good guys.

The survey found that nearly one in three French adults dislike English people. With our luck that one will be working in the Brexit negotiations team.

When asked what it is they don’t like about the English they listed, which seems more hurtful than just having one thing, annoyances such as our football hooligans and our loud singing drunks. They are both problems that have improved in the UK recently but that might be because we exported them successfully.

Also on the list of things the French hate about us is the fact we drink tea.

If you hate someone for drinking a hot drink it says more about your levels of anger than the person doing the drinking.

I don’t like it when someone in the office makes themselves a hot drink without offering to make me one but I’d called that more miffed than hate filled.

They also don’t like the fact we only speak English.

I can tell you why we don’t, we don’t want to be able to understand all the things people are saying about us.


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