Bastille Day

Before I let loose some images of Bastille Day here, let me let loose some thoughts on the history of Bastille Day.  Look, the French are puh-retty into themselves.  With due reason, I think… at least some of the time.  The 14th of July celebrates the day the people, the majority said, NON! to … well, practically anyone who wasn’t them, meaning the King, the aristocracy, and the Catholic Church as a government powerhouse.   Which reminds me of this past Friday in class when I had to write my thoughts on the following prompt: What views of France does your native country have, and do you share them?

Well.  I could go on for days, but I was only allowed 25-30 lines so things had to get a tad general.  It’s easy to write the French off with shallow arguments such as the sadly typical “You’d be speaking German if it weren’t for our D-Day boys” one.  My main idea was that the United States and France have a pretty funny relationship — they’re like cousins that have a lot in common but hardly like to express that fact.  It’s almost near embarassing to think about the kinship.  How many times have I heard that France is full of snobby surrender monkeys, and France thinks the USA is full of pompous, loud bigots?  There’s a bit of truth in every stereotype — where else would you get these ideas?   Ah, but those who have much in common tend to start out hating one another and only picking at each other’s flaws (which happen to be in similar veins).  It’s like a sitcom, no?

Whatever the US felt strongly about, the French followed suit in their own manner.   It was like hardcore vs. mediumcore.  While the US may pick fights, France chooses its battles.  That isn’t to say that there’s ANY lying down and just taking it on either side. I also considered how each revolution went down — the American Revolution was successful partly because the the French had a hand in it.  They, too, wanted a new government.  American success over the British monarchy, plus the ever-potent human weapon that was Benjamin Franklin, was an the impetus to the French batallion who returned home.  The fighting they did for the American colonies’ sake no doubt brought back that sparkle into the ol’ French peasants’ eyes.  Of course rather than it being, “You know what, I don’t think I want a King ruling my life!” it was “I hate being poor, uneducated, stuck, and a slave to religious practices.  Let’s storm this mug!”  WOOPAH!

I think Wikipedia sums it up best.

“The storming of the Bastille was more important as a rallying point and symbolic act of rebellion than a practical act of defiance.”

I think a great soundtrack for this entry would be the 80s hit by Twisted Sister, We’re Not Gonna Take It!  Why oh why do I always attribute every argument to some stupid song?  Lyrics, man.  They hit right home.  Even if they’re dumb.  If they convey an idea that’s understandable and stand-behind-able, it’s supportable.  Able able able.

Anyway, this is how I spent my Bastille weekend.

028 (2)


Today’s moral: Be Your Own Boss!  A la Francais!


One comment on “Bastille Day”

  1. Guten morgen meine fruend!

    I like your pictures picture!

    Also, I am a boss. Come home soon you need to meet beatrice.

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