was discovered by Charlemagne in the Dark Ages. Other important
historical figures are Louis XIV, the Huguenots, Joan of Arc,
Jacques Cousteau and Charles de Gaulle, who was President for
many years and is now an airport.
French form of government is democratic but noisy. Elections
are held more or less continuously and always result in a draw.
The French love administration so for government purposes the
country is divided into regions, departments, districts, municipalities,
towns, communes, villages, cafes, and telephone kiosks. Each
of these has its own government and elections. Parliament consists
of two chambers, the Upper and Lower, though confusingly they
are both on the ground floor, and whose members are either Gaullists
or Communists, neither of whom should be trusted by the traveler.
Parliamentís principal occupation is setting off atomic bombs
in the south Pacific and acting indignant and surprised when
other countries complain. According to the most current American
state department intelligence, the President is now someone
named Jacques. Further information is not available at this
French pride themselves on their culture, though it is not easy
to see why. All their music sounds the same and they have never
made a movie that you would want to watch for anything but the
face it, no matter how much garlic you put on it, a snail is
just a slug with a shell on its back. Croissants on the other
hand, are excellent, although it is impossible for most Americans
to pronounce this word. In general, travelers are advised to
stick to cheeseburgers.
has a large and diversified economy, second only to Germanyís
in Europe, which is surprising because the French hardly work
at all. If they are not spending four hours dawdling over lunch,
they are on strike and blocking the roads with their trucks
and tractors. Franceís principal exports, in order of importance
to the economy, are wine, nuclear weapons, perfume, guided missiles,
champagne, guns, grenade launchers, land mines, tanks, attack
aircraft, miscellaneous armaments and cheese.
has more holidays than any other nation in the world. Among
its 361 national holidays are: 197 Saintsí days, 37 National
Liberation Days, 16 Declaration of Republic Days, 54 Return
of Charles de Gaulle in triumph as if he won the war single-handed
Days, 18 Napoleon sent into Exile Days, 17 Napoleon Called Back
from Exile Days, and 2 "France is Great and the Rest of
the World Sucks" Days.
least itís not Germany.
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