Chronicle “C’est la vie” – Obnoxious Parisians, it’s old-fashioned

It’s a small revolution in the capital: Parisians put their mythical bad mood on pause.

Tourists are coming back in force and, with the Covid break, we had forgotten what a subway trip is like at rush hour, on a train full of families, friends, couples intensely exploring the capital. Do you see me coming? His way to land right in front of the automatic door to block the exit. I’m not complaining, but… your slow pace, your strong apostrophes, your meetings in front of our bakeries. I’m not saying they bother, of course, they make the economy work. But God, they are a chamber pot! I am sorry.

Actually, in Paris we are no longer the same. After a long mea culpa of two years, we made the resolution to be friendlier. To chase away this detestable reputation for brutal and impatient Parisians. Poor tourists. Provincials, foreigners, even incredulous disappointment at the rudeness, the nervousness, the contempt, when it is not a scam. Traumatized by previous stays among us, diluted by our disdain, now they hardly dare to ask us for directions. Misery.

What’s next after this announcement?

How to repair? Kindness and attention. We are not there yet, but, after a little summary investigation, it seems that yes, we are not dreaming, the tourists find us more understanding. More “traders”, at least. The Galeries Lafayette saleswoman who goes out of her way to find you the right size, the waiter who speaks English, the owner who changes the garnish on your plate for free, the RATP employee who escorts you to the right platform, I won. that they would begin to smile, let’s not exaggerate. But it seems that there are more of us who stop our mad rush to help, inform and even offer a cigarette.

What’s next after this announcement?

Parisians travel more than ever before, have adapted to English and have understood that being obnoxious is out of fashion

What’s going on ? Generation issue, first. Parisians travel more than ever before, have learned to speak English and have understood that being obnoxious is out of fashion. As they are not calves, they noticed that in Berlin, Lausanne, Brooklyn, Lisbon or Montreal, the inhabitants help them, occupy their time, in short, they adopt them. There is no need to go abroad: in the cities, in the villages of our beautiful provinces, Parisians have listened carefully to bitter recriminations. While in the past they derived a certain pride (an arrogance) from this obnoxious reputation, they perceived the ridiculousness of being obnoxious. This typical condescension, mockery, irritability no longer suits us. A trap? Crisis? – of shameful conscience. Like you’re wearing a shearling sleeve polyester satin dress today, so 80’s. Grotesque.

Is it the recurring criticism against our “arrogant” “Jupiterian” president that got us thinking? A handsome young president, certainly already friendlier than the standard Parisian but not as friendly as, he hopes, the Italians. Once sober, we understood that fashion is about empathy. Respect for others is new. This revelation was accentuated by the long migration to the countryside in times of Covid. Some Parisians realized, well, well, that they weren’t home and they weren’t loved. So they stopped behaving like scoundrels, as they do during their two-week vacation. Then they remembered that they themselves had once been strangers in the capital. Former provincials, like all Parisians. Finally, the fast ones, the stressed ones, the anxious ones, the angry ones, discovered sweetness, kindness, balance. They even understood that lowering their voice did not take away their precious prestige. Phew!

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