In part une, we unveiled a new vision for Cork’s French Quarter that will be packed with stereotypes and clichés that is sure to rake in the tourists.
Now we look at more ways we can bring a slice of France to Leeside and how Corkonians themselves can help by changing their accents, taking up smoking and having affairs.
At any Cork event worth its salt, there’s an army of moderately authoritative people in high vis vests. The business community around Carey’s Lane and French Church Street need to employ a bunch of these fellas, not to maintain order, but to stoke some disorder for the authentic ‘gilet-jaune’ (yellow vest) French experience.
|Dass exactly what we were thinking, sham.|
Some low-level chanting and accidentally-on-purpose bumping into outside café tables, knocking and breaking glassware and shouting ‘Up Ze Rebels’, should be sufficient to keep a nice authentic French edge to the area.
The Language of Romance
Now that communication in the Huguenot Quarter is exclusively through the language of romance, Corkonians will need to revive their junior and leaving cert French to communicate with staff in the area.
So for an authentic Paddy-in-Paris experience, barristas will contort their faces as you mangle “their” beautiful language with a ‘excusey moi-miss-yure can I’ve a latté there más é do thoil é?’.
Quickly changing to the language of philistines lest you cause them further offence, you will be permitted to speak one sentence in English before you are run out of the place with coffee in hand.
Even if you’ve little or no French, us locals need to start pronouncing the names of businesses in the area with a strong French accent too including dropping the ‘s’, as in “Come ‘ere to me, garcon, I ‘ad a bien coffeee at Duke diss mornin’” or “I’d like some shicken at Nando”. It’ll get some quare looks from your friends initially but it’ll catch on quickly. Probably.
Unapologetic Public Shifting
No outdoor restaurant is complete without a couple sitting silently in each other’s company for a long period whilst appearing to abhor each other’s presence. Other customers will pick up on the tension and expect either of them to walk out at any moment. How can any relationship facilitate such obvious mutual distain?
|Shifty shifty - just don't let the other lads in VMware catch you|
Without warning they suddenly start shifting each other while dinner plates, the table and other customers are knocked out of the way. Unlike other races, the French let nothing get in the way of la passion. Who cares if they’re both in their seventies and it’s the middle of the day? This is the land of romance. Pretty much.
Speaking of shifting the face off someone - any locals who live in the Huguenot area are also going to have to get very romantic to help give the new French quarter an authentic feel. We’re not talking about producing a dozen roses when she’s having her cornflakes every morning or surprising her by taking her to The Glen versus Sarsfields clash down the Páirc.
Non! If you really want to show a loved one how much you love them, then having an affair is the traditional French way to express it.
This is a fairly time-consuming scene so you might have to skip hurling training a couple of nights a week if you’re taking on another old doll.
Your actual old doll (the one you love, like) will eventually bump into one of your teammates who will give the game away and, if this French thing really takes off, your old doll will actually be delighted because when you coming running back to her this proves you love her (although she is probably having an affair with your teammate as well, so just factor that in to who you mark at the next session). Wee feen, c’est complex.
The thoughtful, cigarette smoking French person is another stereotype we are going to have to live up to if we want our new cultural area to have any chance of getting off the ground.
That means most of us will have to take up smoking as about 100% of Frenchies smoke, but crucially it’s not about what we are smoking it’s about how we are doing it.
|Don't let those tumours stop you looking pure daycint|
Smoking when you’re French is all about body language. Irish people either smoke cigarettes like they want to get life over with as quickly as possible, sucking the carcinogens deep into their inner organs with each drag, or else like they are hiding the fag from their mam – quick, short tokes with eyes constantly roving, keeping sketch.
From now on smoking a cigarette outside a café or restaurant on French Church Street is an opportunity to perform a piece of silent theatre. Imagine yourself sitting outside a Parisian café reading L’Echo and sipping a Tanora latté:
Your self-confidence would make Donald Trump look like Simon Coveney. You are a total flah and everyone else looks like a human version of the event centre site. Their appearance offends you so much that you close your eyes as they pass and blow your cigarette smoke at them wishing they were never born so that this awful moment had never occurred.
Similarly, when someone has the audacity to try to speak to you, you can only reply with something deeply thoughtful because you are above small talk - the trivialities of life disgust you:
‘C’mere, any chance of the ‘ucks of your fag there bubbila?’
‘Feen, you are like ze new chirping chick in the nest of a robin. So happy at your mother’s breast and yet so imminently doomed. The magpie watches you from above. I remain.”
That won’t be long sending him on his way. Ooo-la-langer!
Even without a global pandemic, you don't need to leave Cork to see the most beautiful sights on earth and have an outer body experience...