French: The Most Productive People In The World
Every day's a holiday – if you're French
Subheader to the latter: The mindset of 'work less but gain more' has infected French thinking and created a lazy nation.
Both theses can't be right. Or can they?
Slightly off-topic: at the beach in Guadeloupe, The Man™ watched thoughtfully as I struggled to shake sand out of a pareo without getting it to blow back into my face. Then he went:
"Hey. Look here."
He calmly folded his pareo in half and shook it briskly left to right, dislodging the sand swiftly and neatly. "See this? Side to side."
"Ohhh," I said.
His eyes grew stern. He stopped the vigorous sarong-shaking. "Do you know why I know this? Because I'm French. And I get five weeks' holidays."
"Oh, I'm sorry," I said. "I guess if we weren't so preoccupied with advancing the current state of technology, we might've made time to learn how to shake sand out of blankets."
This naturally led to a fight. Going back on topic though, I do think there's something to the philosophy that knowing how to play contributes to greater efficiency during in-office time. I also think it sucks that as a successfully-conditioned American, the thought of taking a vacation -- even a wee three-day one -- throws me into fits of hysteria-laced anxiety.