Totally Frenched Out

From the blogger formerly known as Samdebretagne

Friday, July 23, 2010

Not on a train, not on a plane, not in a car, not in a bar.

Let me just say that I cannot stand the sound of people clipping their fingernails. Or biting their fingernails. It drives me absolutely insane. Up the wall. Batty. Bonkers. Fab came from an entire family of nail-biters. To this day, I still am not sure how I survived a 22 hour roadtrip with them.

Luckily C is not a nail biter. But he is obsessive about keeping his nails trimmed short. Knowing how much I can't stand the sound of it, he usually does it when I'm not around. But the other night he was playing the guitar and they were getting in the way. He was like "Come on, can't I just do it in front of you just this once?"

And I'm all - Um, no. Not gonna happen buddy.

So he said "Okay, fine, I'll just borrow your nail clipper and do it in the métro on my way to work tomorrow. " And my eyeballs nearly popped out of my head. I was like "Aw no, don't tell me you are one of those people!!" I could see him thinking "Woman, what on Earth are you talking about?" So I explained that everyone hates that person - the one who's cutting their nails (or God forbid their toenails -Ew!) in a public place. C said "Um, I think you are the only one who hates that person." His theory is that it's just my problem and that in France it's perfectly normal to do this. And I was all "But no! Even Twitter agrees with me - we just had a big discussion about this the other day!"

So come on blogosphere - back me up. Nail clipping should be done in the privacy of your own home, non???



Blogger jonnifer said...

I had this *exact same* conversation with Philippe. What the F. Obviously this is something you do at home!

July 23, 2010 at 1:16 PM  
Blogger Katia said...

OMG no way. You know my feelings on this matter. DEFINITELY not acceptable in public. Enough said.
Although we are arguing with the people who find it perfectly acceptable to pee in public so... perhaps we're fighting a losing battle? ;)

July 23, 2010 at 1:43 PM  
Blogger Ksam said...

Ha, it's so funny you should say that, because one day in MN, we were talking a long-walk with my mom and C had to pee. He started walking towards a tree, and I said "OMG, what are you doing?? You can't pee in front of my mom!!!" And he was like "What? What's the big deal?" lol

July 23, 2010 at 1:46 PM  
Blogger Crystal said...

oh the french and their public urination and lack of modesty re: bodily functions and upkeep. If Max pulled out the clippers in the metro, I'd change wagons. Luckily he's a nibbler and he works nights, so he takes care of the trimming when he's standing around for 8 hours outside. And I've loosened up on the peeing anywhere thing because he has the bladder of a toddler. But, I wouldn't stand for it if we were visiting Canada. He can piss all over his country, but not mine.

July 23, 2010 at 1:50 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Agreed nail clipping, plucking, any personal hygiene needs to be done at home. Period.

July 23, 2010 at 1:51 PM  
Blogger Keith Eckstein said...

Right up there with Nose Picking, in my opinion!

Also, Anal Scratching is a big No No in my book - especially the trying to dig out panties/boxers from cleft type!

A glimpse of that can ruin my day (and that takes some doing!)

Public Urination though? Well, I happen to believe that that's every man's God given right - but then, that's just me (and 30 million other men in France!)

All the best


July 23, 2010 at 1:59 PM  
Blogger Global Librarian said...

Hell, yeah! Nobody needs to witness that. It's unhygienic!

I also hate it when people brush their hair in public and reapply lipstick after dinner while still sitting at the table!

July 23, 2010 at 2:18 PM  
Blogger Eileen said...

I always thought nail clipping was something you should do in your bedroom or in the bathroom, but my French roommates were more public about it, doing it in the garden or on the living room coffee table (which I found totally gross...). Of course, they were boys, so I hesitate to generalize...

July 23, 2010 at 2:56 PM  
Blogger Jennie said...

YES! YES! YES! It's so disgusting to see people do that in public. I don't mind the noise so much, but do think it's gross when people just fling their nail clippings wherever. Ugh.

And yeah, French men will pee anywhere. They don't care who can see them or if it's illegal. Ten times more disgusting than nail clipping.

July 23, 2010 at 3:01 PM  
Blogger Leah said...

eEww, nail (and toe??) clipping in public is gross! I definitely have your back on this one.

Re: peeing in public. That was on the list of the things I MADE SURE to mention to the cop's that he will NOT be able to do during his first trip to the U S of A!

July 23, 2010 at 3:36 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm on your side too - not in public, ever! The peeing in public thing grosses me out as well, as does men's readjusting of the twig and berries. I just got back from Egypt where the men are CONSTANTLY fiddling with themselves! BTW, your posts on Egypt last Spring and your reponses to my questions were really helpful - thanks again!

July 23, 2010 at 5:34 PM  
Blogger Syd said...

I wouldn't clip my nails in public, since my nail clipper is at home, but I don't see the big deal.

As for hygeine: the clippings are presumably falling on the ground. The ground is not particularly hygienic to begin with, some random nails are not going to make much difference. But I wouldn't do it because it's akin to littering (throwing things on the ground). And certainly the act of cutting is null on the hygiene scale.

I think y'all are being a bunch of weirdo sissies. (I mean that in the nicest way possible.)

Summing it up: Public nail clipping: odd, but not gross.

July 23, 2010 at 8:07 PM  
Blogger Megan said...

Fingernail clipping in public, to a certain limit, tolerable. Toenails? No way!

July 23, 2010 at 8:13 PM  
Blogger Alisa said...

I agree, do it at home. I once sat on a plane next to a guy who started clipping his nails... ewww.

But then a question - do you also hate clipping your own nails, or just hearing other people do it? Because really, it's the same sound, right? :)

July 24, 2010 at 1:27 AM  
Blogger MilkJam said...

I agree that clipping of any kind should be done at home but I guess that it depends on the space too... It would bother me a lot more crammed in an airplane with someone next to me clipping their nails than it would in a park where they were several feet away.
It doesn't both me at all when someone that I know (for example MG at home) clips his nails in front of me.

My pet peeve is nail files, I HATE THEM! On me, hearing someone else filling... EWWWW its like nails on a chalkboard!!! Can't stand it at all. That's something that you'll find a lot of American doing in public and totally drives me up the wall.

Seems like clipping = accepted in France, filling = accepted in America?

July 24, 2010 at 8:19 AM  
Blogger Julie said...

Must be against what you think on this one. If I break my nail and what's left is annoying me then I've been known to whip out the clippers but having said that I wouldn't cut my nails for the fun of it in public although it wouldn't bother me at all if someone else did.

July 24, 2010 at 11:03 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


July 25, 2010 at 6:39 AM  
Blogger emaleejayne said...

It is completely unacceptable to do this type of thing in public! ahhhhhh!!!

July 25, 2010 at 6:59 PM  
Blogger L said...

That explains why I've seen random nail clippings around in France. I never made the connection that someone was actually clipping their nails there because that just seemed so far fetched to me.

B kind of scratches at his nails, which means it takes forever to break anything off. When I hear it I tell him to get a clipper or file pronto so he can shorten the nail and get on with it.

My parents cut toenails without picking up the clippings, but an aunt one time reprimanded me and now I've fixed my ways: nail clippings always go in the trash immediately.

July 25, 2010 at 10:51 PM  
Blogger La Fauxvaisienne said...

You aren't alone. That sound is like nails on a chalkboard to me!

July 26, 2010 at 1:26 AM  
Blogger Princess Dreams said...

So UNACCEPTABLE in public. Even in your home it should be firstly, alone, the secondly either outside in the breeze or in the bathroom. and you MUST pick up all scraps and put straight in bin. NOTHING worse than finding someone elses clippings. Ewwwww!! So with you on this one. One of those private behaviours that we all know that we do, but no one else needs to see.

July 26, 2010 at 3:24 AM  
Blogger Aurélie said...

Yes, I agree completely about keeping nail-clipping private and cleaning up the bathroom or wherever afterwards. Also, I'm French, so let's not pin irking nail clipping habits on The French. Especially since I live in the US and I have witnessed American folks do it in public too! (thankfully on very rare occasions, but still)

July 26, 2010 at 7:14 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Definitely in your own home! And outside, or at least on paper or a plastic bag to collect the clippings. It drives me bonkers when someone doesn't put their clippings in the bin and I have to see them, ICKY!

July 27, 2010 at 2:50 PM  
Blogger Jennifer said...

I don't have very strong feelings about the sound of nail being clipped, bitten or filed, but it is clearly something you do at home, in the bathroom, alone.

Although, sometimes I take my kids outside to cut their nails because they squirm and I cannot get the nail clippings to fall into the sink or trash directly. Sometimes it's just easier to let them fall in the grass.

August 24, 2010 at 1:55 PM  

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