All the stuff you never knew you needed to know about life in rural France.....and all the stuff the books and magazines won't tell you.

Thursday, 2 December 2010

Are you ready for the seventh of December?

Eric Cantona (Manchester United Museum)Image by edwin.11 via Flickr
Tuesday the seventh of December 2010 is when you can make a stand.

You are, no doubt, somewhat less than appreciative of government action which preserves the ability of bailed out banks to pay vast bonuses to the crooks they employ at the expense of the general taxpayer...who is, no doubt, suffering from the said banks' unwillingness to advance one kopek of the money garnered from said taxpayer to assist same in promoting its business affairs despite the general creditworthiness of the taxpayer concerned.

Eric Cantona has a suggestion.

You remember Eric Cantona...surely?

The footballer whose psychoanalyst suggested that he play football in England rather than in France after calling each and every member of the French Football Federation  'an idiot' at  a disciplinary hearing after throwing the ball at the referee on disagreeing with that august person's decision....he got a three month suspension rather than the one month normal on such abnormal occasions..
I reckon the panel was lucky he that he wasn't  carrying his football boots at the time of the hearing given his reactions to disappointment while he played for Nimes.

He then played in the English Football League with much success..the English are used to eccentrics...until, after being sent off for a foul that managed to attract a referee's attention, he encountered some antagonism in the crowd which he countered by a Kung Fu kick...

Subsequent media attention was countered with the quote

'When seagulls follow the trawler  its because they think sardines will be thrown into the sea.'
This alone tells you that he was French footballer, not an English one, even though his family's origins are in Sardinia and that he, from an immigrant family, was a forerunner of the famous 'Black, Blanc, Beur, (Black, White, Mahgrebi) team which won the World Cup in 1998.
The team which was supposed to represent the triumph of integration of foreigners into French society.

Just don't look at the Paris suburbs since.

Well,since his glory days Cantona  has appeared in many commercials, has been a small part film actor and has produced a film himself.

Cantona has reacted to the economic crisis too....

He is of the opinion that the lack of  effective control of the banks...because the big banks control governments...has let banks, rather than governments control economic the detriment of the average chap.

Well the IRA could have told him that banks control governments years ago...recent experience just confirms it.

The IRA contested British control of Northern Ireland...and they took  heed of the  tenets of public international  law, which lays down characteristics which enable a state to be recognised as such....control of its borders, taxation, police functions - thus the kneecapping operatives and slush finds - but finding this not to be sufficient, they attacked the British mainland.

I have never been altogether clear which bombings were the work of the IRA and which were the work of British security services....and Wikileaks wasn't around at the time to enlighten me....but one of the few happy memories of the time was the picture of the cabinet ministers emerging from 10 Downing Street after the IRA had landed a mortar bomb in the garden of the Prime Minister's official residence, launched through the roof of a builders' van from a road nearby.
They all looked as though a swift change of underwear would have been in order and I remember thinking that a few more near misses might make them a little less happy to send poor people's children off to fight America's wars.

However, attacking civilians in pubs or government ministers in their bunkers brought no the IRA turned their attention to the City of London...home of the banks and the financial services industry.

Two bombs in the City was all it took to bring the British government to heel.
A more impressive demonstration of the power of the bankers could not have been desired.....

Until the round of bail outs in recent years.

Anyway, Eric Cantona has had enough of banks... their greed, their criminality and their deleterious effects on society.
Not for him demonstrating in the streets, though.
He, being French, knows just what a con that is apart from which he doesn't have a union to design the placards. (here)

He  has a much better idea.

If everyone were to withdraw their money from the banks, he says, the banks would collapse.
This would be, in the words of 1066 and All That, a Good Thing and Utterly Memorable.

He wants everyone to go to their bank on Tuesday the seventh of December and withdraw their ukkers.
The idea being that if everyone does it on the same day the banks can't play pass the parcel and shore each other up while waiting for governments to ride to the rescue once again.

Fiendishly clever, Monsieur Cantona....and you notice it has a very French twist to it.

I suspect that Monsieur Cantona is a customer of Credit Agricole....which generally does not open on Mondays.

So, get that mattress slit's hour has come!

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  1. I didn't have one of them near was just Credit Agricole or the Post Office.
    I started off with Credit Lyonnaise...but when that went belly up investing in Hollywood of all things I tried CA....but it was not a great success!

  2. Monsieur Cantona: A legend in his own mind.
    Unbelievable. Great story. :-)

  3. I have this image in mind of Cantona kung fuing his way through the doors of his bank...which open automatically in front of him..

  4. So Ken Dodd may as well stay home all day on the 7th and twiddle his thumbs then...?

  5. Steve, crumbs, is he still alive?
    Fighting the taxman must have been good for him...

  6. Not sure I've got anything to take out at the moment. :(

    Maybe Eric could lend me a eurobob or two so I can join in. :)

  7. Somehow, I doubt me removing my tuppence ha'path would have much effect on the global economy.

    On another issue: take 1 pork solomillo (loin?), and make vertical slices, but not all the way to the bottom, so it ends up like a book. Put a teaspoon of orange marmalade or redcurrent jelly or something similar between each slice, plus a litle salt and crushed garlic. Wrap in aluminium foil and bake in the oven for 30 mins, together with the jacket potatoes you put in half an hour previously. Enjoy your cricket.

  8. Sarah, you could start a 'gissabob' website asking Eric for a contribution...

    Pueblo girl, that sounds super:
    I've just made marmelade from the sort of sevilles in the that is wonderfully timed!

    Cricket super.

  9. I heard about him saying that the other day. He could get in serious trouble by the gov't. suggesting such a thing. He's not as stupid as he looks.

  10. Dedene, I see a minister is telling him he should stick to that's the glove puppet speaking....and, more interestingly, one of the puppet masters from the banks has been chuntering about the risks posed to the 'fragile' system by Cantona coming out with such revolutionary stuff!

    Rattled a few bars of their cages, hasn't he!

  11. I'd like to help out but there's nothing much to take out of our bank account!

  12. Dear Fly: In my Crédit Agricole account, I have possibly a fiver, a Clementine and several bottle caps of assorted flavours and sizes. You better bet I'll be taking all of that out first thing Tuesday morning... or I might play it safe and remove it Monday night... just in case. You know what they're like with Clementines around here. I despise the horrid nasty banque I'm forced to deal with, I really do. If I can kick them in the Swanee River, so be it.

    Pueble Girl: Oh! Oh! What a great idea! I like the 'book-fold' treatment. I make this sauce based around Mango Chutney, apricots, sultanas plumped in Calvados and veal stock and I bet a reduction of that would be über-fab placed inside a 'book-folded' pork loan. Great idea, so, thank you!

  13. Dumdad, that's the problem.
    I think there is a big 'Coalition of the Willing'...but it doesn't have an ukker between itself, said ukkers have been abstracted from its pocket by governments and....banks.

    Kitty, I loathe Credit Agricole with a fervour previously reserved for Barclays.
    I should nip round for the clementines during the weekend with a stick of gelignite as they're bound to have been taking'll be quite safe as the gendarmerie are all busy on the roads collecting festive penalties and the finger print men don't work weekends.

    Love your sauce...that reduction would be super!
    I do a casserole of rump, sliced as Pueblo girl says to do for pork, with a couple of slices of unsmoked streaky bacon, crushed garlic and thyme in each pocket, tied together and cooked in beef stock with red wine, black olives, more thyme and some dried tangerine peel...great in the slow cooker.

    I have found some new sauces here...blackberry with chipotle and...really zingy, mango, ginger and jalapeno.

  14. So often I get great recipe ideas out of your comments section!!

    Yes. well I might also add that when someone makes a sweeping statement to "take all your money out of the bank" on such and such a day, wouldn't you think that there might be a bunch of needy sorts with criminal minds who might stand waiting about looking for people with satchels???

    I like the idea of a mango/ginger/jalapeno sauce...

  15. Oh my... Fly that rump sounds exquisite! And I'm super envious of anything that involves Chipotle since I cannot source it here in France. The mango, ginger, jalapeño is something that I'd love with duck. Oh! Or PRAWNS! Yum. This is making me hungry and I already had my souper.

    Just an aside, I took out all my tangerines from that blasted Crédit Agricole today, just left enough bottle caps in for the odd direct debit coming out later in the month. Tomorrow should be rather interesting!

  16. Fly, I join you in your loathing. We started off with CA, then for reasons which I can only put down to sunstroke/mind altering drugs, we changed to Barclays France. How they haven't bankrupted us with their imbecility (is that a word?) is a constant source of amazement. They have given several thousands of euros of our money to Antargaz, claiming we had a direct debit with them. We've never had a direct debit with anyone in France. They claim no responsiblity, Antargaz claim they don't have our money despite the entries in our statement showing they have. Head and brick wall spring to mind. Monsieur Cantona is welcome to our overdraft!

  17. truestarr, yes, people have been very kind with suggestions...and it has started me off being enthusiastic again after a period in the dumps, cooking wise.
    Have a look at the Costa rica comments section..more good ideas there!

    Yes, the thought of two queues had ocurred to to draw out, one to mug...

    Kitty, just watch what Credit Agricole do with your bottle tops...they managed to convert shares in our name to shares in their what they'll do when tempted by bottle tops is anyone's guess!

    P(V)LiF, and when you think that all these clever tricks the banks have been using to parcel up debt were invented by Barclays...

  18. Fly: Well, nothing happened yesterday. It was rather like some damp mattress laid over the smouldering coals of last summer's barbecue. No fire. No storming the Bastille. Rather pathetic.

    I'm so disappointed.

    I'll probably switch over to Crédit Mutuel, if for nothing else, to get away from CA. Crédit Mutuel are supposed to be 'La banque à qui parler'. As long as they're not 'The bank that robs you blind, then charges you for the pleasure', it's all good by me.

  19. Fly: Very possible, true, there is La Poste. It was just suggested that I go to Crédit Mutuel by my business adviser as they will actually give government-sponsored business loans to people in my particular situation.
    The stipulation being that I open a current account with that bank.
    I have another appointment next week to go over my business plan again, I'll ask the adviser what she thinks.
    But either one, I'll not be starting the new year with CA. They can kiss MY grits goodbye!

  20. Kitty, well, if they'll push the ukkers your way, go with them...

    Trisha, I just thought about trying to withdraw money at any local the time the three ahead of you in the queue have ranged in their ear trumpets it would be time to close the bank for lunch!