Anorak News | French Toast

French Toast

by | 7th, July 2005

‘LONDON has only just been awarded the Olympic Games and already the negative reporting has begun.

Jacques Chirac, Napoleon, Pétain, Louis Pasteur, Jeanne d’Arc, Charles Aznavour – your boys took one hell of a beating

No, not that. We’ve a full seven years until the 2012 Games begins to read about shoddy workmanship, a legion of illegal workers and falling and rising house prices in London’s East End.

The first volley of negativity is aimed across the Channel at the French. You see, as important as it is that Britain got the nod to stage the Games is the fact that the French did not.

In any sporting contest there must be “WINNERS” (UK) and “LOSERS” (La France). This is no re-enactment of Trafalgar when no-one is sunk and everyone comes out on top.

This is the real deal. To the victors the spoils. To the losers – aka the French – the chance to have your tear-soaked heads encircled in Olympic rings on the Sun’s front page.

“CHEER UP FRANCE..IT’S ONLY A GAMES,” says the Sun sportingly. Indeed, it is. But the paper spots Lord Horatio Nelson “looking down as Britain cheered victory at Trafalgar” and senses so much more.

If you doubt it, just raise a telescope to your eye and take a look at “Les Miserables” across the way.

Poor old “smug” President” Jacques Chirac. He failed to impress the delegates on the International Olympic Committee. He looks like he’s got a nasty taste in his mouth.

The man who doesn’t like our food is invited to eat the Sun’s crusty “humble pie” – the paper has sent one to his room at the Gleneagles Hotel where he’s G8 summiting.

But if he doesn’t fancy a slice of that, the Sun offers a few alternatives, like stuffed frog, Coq-up au vin, French runner-up beans and some hard cheeses all washed down with a pint of bitter – the paper recommends a foamy glass of London Pride.

Cheer up, Jacques. But it’s all just good fun, of course. Just a joke. Although in “Who’s laughing now, Mr Chirac?”, the Mail spots France’s court jester in residence in po-faced mode.

The paper says that Chirac is the biggest loser from yesterday’s vote. The paper suggests that his jokes about British food and agriculture may have cost Paris the Games.

“It’s all Chirac’s fault,” says one Frenchman, one of thousands who had gathered outside Paris’s L’Hotel de Ville in readiness for a huge victory party.

“If Chirac hadn’t insulted England earlier this week, we would have won,” comes a stuttering French voice between sobs.

“We had everything,” says another. “Chirac’s stupid insults against the English have clearly worked against us.”

But, come, come. It’s not the fin de regne for Chirac. It’s not so much the winning as the taking part.

And if it hadn’t have been for the French there could have been no contest and no magnificent British victory.

So berets off to the winners. And tissues to the losers…

Paul Sorene’

Posted: 7th, July 2005 | In: Tabloids Comment | TrackBack | Permalink