Before my trip, culturally literate people informed me that there is
much more to France than just the World Cup, and I should make sure to
also explore some of its cultural treasures while I was there. Luckily,
there was usually two hours between the early and late games, so there
was plenty of time to investigate all the other contributions of French
culture. For example...
France is well known for its medieval cathedrals. Here we see the
Cathedral St. Dennis, well known as the burying site of kings such as
Ronaldo the Mercurial and Roberto Carlos the Swerver. Architecture
students will note the gothic spires and flying buttresses common in
buildings of this period.
France has often been the center of the art world. You can appreciate
this easily, as the fine French impressionist paintings, such as the one
shown here, are displayed on posters, banners, and T-shirts throughout
French fashion is popular worldwide. Fashions change rapidly to always
be on the cutting edge. For example, here we see yesterday's Cameroon
merchandise already on sale!
France has a reputation for having the best food in the world. While I
do appreciate being able to get beer with my pommes-frites, and getting
those cool ozone-depleting boxes you can't get in the US anymore, I
found France's culinary reputation to be a bit overstated.
France doesn't seem to have made much of a contribution to music. Most
of the music I heard was sung by a Senagalese named Youssou N'Dour and
Belgian named Axelle Red.
As you can see, my cultural education is progressing well. I am,
however, sadly deficient in my knowledge of Japanese and Korean
cultures, but I expect to have ample time to correct this, say in about