Quotable

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photo by Emily Faulstich

The typical traveler to Japan, China, or Africa is more open-minded than the typical traveler to France. The fascinating rites of the Chinese, Japanese, or Zulus may cause travelers considerable discomfort and inconvenience, but travelers in these countries tend to accept the obstacles stoically, reasoning (rightly) that things are just done differently in foreign cultures. For some reason, when it comes to the French, North Americans drop this reflex. When North Americans are faced with France’s peculiar way of doing things, they do not reason that they are dealing with an ancient people who have their own way of doing things. Actually, they accuse the French of being inefficient, overly bureaucratic, unhyigenic, and stuck in their ways. And they take it personally.

 Sixty Million Frenchmen Can’t Be Wrong

Just a little food for thought from a new book I’m reading. I’ll come to the defense of the French at every opportunity (except, of course, when discussing WWII, and then it is totally acceptable to refer to them as “cheese eating surrender monkeys”) but especially when Americans harp on the French for being, well, French. As the punctuation-averse Gertrude Stein once said, “America is my country but Paris is my hometown.”

What are you reading?

Tiny Apartment

Have you heard the quote, “Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful”? That came to mind immediately upon seeing this tiny Soho apartment (they’re claiming it’s 350ft², but maybe they’re including the inside of the bathtub as square footage? Ain’t no way). In this apartment you’d barely have room to take your shoes off without it feeling overcrowded. Designer Mischa Lampert has admittedly done a phenomenal job redesigning the space and making it feel larger than it really is. I think it’s all that dreamy white:

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I cannot imagine having the bathtub jut right up against the kitchen sink, out in the open, but that’s just me. I would have closed it off and made that nook a big rain shower (the toilet is opposite in a closed off room). The apartment as a whole seems like it belongs somewhere in Europe, don’t you think? Could you live in a place this small? I’d need a writing desk for sure.