How to understand the English (for the French)

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You might be able to understand all manner of electrical and electronic gadgets, but to understand the English, that's another matter.

Alphonse Allais (a French humourist - ed) remarked that while in France we give our streets the names of victories: Wagram, Austerlitz ... the English stick to names of defeats: Trafalgar Square, Waterloo Station ... That gives you an idea of the problem.

The first clue, perhaps comes from their weather - generally bad. If it's not raining, it's foggy and sometimes sleeting, but practically never enough snow for skiing. Undoubtedly this is the origin of the "stiff upper lip" - the famous British phlegmatism.

The other indication resides in their cuisine - if you can call it that. Their favourite dish is fish and chips - a greasy dish devoid of any refinement. It's a mystery why the Queen of England (the most refined lady on the other side of the Channel) hasn't banned it. Their bread is like cottonwool - practically inedible - and they have no cheeses worthy of the name. Only stilton is worth trying, but we have many better in France. If there's a dish you could almost recommend it's roast beef and yorkshire pudding, but only with a glass of red wine (it goes without saying, a good quality French red wine). English wines don't exist because you can't grow vines in such a pitiful climate, except a little in the corner of the land closest to France.

Despite all that, the English are nice people, having harboured Charles de Gaulle during the Second World War, though few of them understand the beautiful language of Victor Hugo. But when it comes to Brexit, one is tempted to believe that they've gone completely bonkers.

(Written in jest by an Englishman with a French name.)