Sunday, May 17, 2009

Why You'll Never Win a Staring Contest in France

Anyone who has ever ridden le métro in Paris and felt the multitude of eyes fixated upon them for no apparent reason knows that the French love to stare. Not the kind of eyes-averted-when-busted staring most of us engage in. I'm talking about an unabashed, unapologetic kind of staring that meets your return glance with complete and utter indifference. It takes some getting used to, but once you realize you don't just have to be the target of all that staring, you're allowed to actually engage in it yourself, the real fun can begin. Just be sure you kick the habit before returning to the non-staring community from whence you came. I've had to relearn that looking at other people on the DC subway system is a major faux pas.

For more on French staring, it's sibling, eavesdropping, and how you can enjoy these two pastimes while partaking in the café culture of France, check out the article I found and loved that discusses it all.


Nomadic Matt said...


Zhu said...

I had never realized that the French stared so much. I tend to look at people because I'm curious and love photography, but staring.. nah.

Now, Chinese in China stare. Like stare at you, then comment out loud how white/ fat/ tan/ big etc you are. Been there, done that... some train rides can be long, especially if you do understand Chinese :D

In the article... can't believe the people actually said "garçon" to call the waiter :D