7 Jun 2013

You know you're not French when...

...You start using meaningless abbreviations like 'pdp' because you think you're in with the cool kids.  Until you realise that no French person has a clue what you're going on about (even the teenagers think you're weird); in fact, the more you try to make 'pdp' happen, the more confused you'll make them.  You may think that 'pdp' means 'pas de probleme' but for a French person it means f@ck all (excuse my French...) 

...You have unbearably pale (synonym: translucent) skin, freckles and reddish hair.  They will assume right away that you are British, or, not of their country.  Note to self: try dying your hair and hitting a tanning booth. 

...You pronounce croissant like "cwoson" because you still can't manage to pronounce the French 'r' without sounding like you're choking on your own tongue or trying to impersonate Gollum.

...You ask for your hamburger to be served 'well done' in a restaurant.  The waiter will most certainly look at you like you made a mistake and the chef will serve it rare.  Expect blood to spill onto your plate because you'll be getting far from the lump of charcoal you initially requested.  If the idea of Steak tartare (raw minced beef on a plate) fills you with disgust, you're definitely not French.

...You apologise when someone bumps into you because you're British and it's the social norm to apologise to everyone, all of the time.  Must. Stop. Being. Overly. Polite.  Contrary to popular belief, old people aren't always nice either.  Feel free to scream at them once in a while when they're in your way.

...You offer up your seat to a pregnant woman on the metro.  That's far too nice.

...You continue to use sarcasm, and think it's hilarious.  French people don't get British humour.  Your attempt at being 'ironic' will go right over their heads and they'll either think you're being incredible mean, or incredibly nice.  Either way, it should be avoided at all costs if you want to make French friends.

...You start having panic attacks in a restaurant when they bring you the wrong flavoured ice-cream because you can't bring yourself to tell the waiter that instead of vanilla, he gave you coconut, which you LOATHE.  You feel guilty because you can't bear to cause an inconvenience and you stare at your food for a long period of time, swirling it around your plate, hoping it might miraculously turn into what you ordered if you frown at it for long enough.  Hint: it won't.

Where on earth is the Eiffel Tower?
...You say each digit individually in your mobile number instead of putting them in pairs.  

...Someone asks you where the closest tube station is and you get your Paris map out.

...You forget how to use the 24 hour clock.  If you say "8" instead of "20" for 8pm, a French person will look at you like you just asked them a complicated mathematical equation, before asking the person behind you.

...You give money to homeless people on the metro.  And then get your wallet stolen because you forgot to zip your bag up.

...You ask for extra ketchup.  On everything.  And then ask how much the free bread costs.


  1. Hey Montana,

    Great blog! It's making me miss my own year abroad-I did Bogotรก and then Turin, Italy and absolutely loved it. I'm now casting for a new MTV documentary about sex and relationships and we're looking for young people in France who would like to take part. I'm wondering if you know anyone who you've met along the way who might be interested? Do you have an email where I could send you a bit more information about it?



    1. Hi Rachel! Thanks for commenting! Sounds like you had a great year abroad too and had the opportunity to live in wonderful places! Of course - pop me an email at montana.gerry12@yahoo.co.uk with more info!


  2. I don't think that the French are the only people who don't get British humor.... ;)