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The one about the unusual ones…

The one about the unusual ones…

By Didier Allouch, host of Rendez-vous d'Amérique

My dear francophiles, francovorous and francophageous friends, in the more than 10 years that we have been working on Rendez-Vous D’Amérique, we have told all kinds of stories. Some were pretty serious, others very educational or cultural. But let’s not talk about these today…

 

"I truly believe that Francophonie is everywhere..."

The thing is that I have always wanted to talk about French-speaking culture in every form in Rendez-Vous d’Amérique. Because I truly believe that Francophonie is everywhere. And I must say that at TV5MONDE, they were game from the beginning. So sometimes, I must say that I found French-speaking culture (or pop-culture, whatever you want to call it, it’s still culture) in very unexpected places.

This week's episode of the show reminds us of 2 of these unusual stories or events that happened this season: the yearly cassoulet war in New York and our profile of the creator of luxury macarons for dogs. And they were not the only ones…

Through the years, we followed a mustard truck on the American roads, we visited a virtual zoo on the Pacific coast, biked with Bernard Hinault, profiled a shark sculptor, a tattoo artist and Simon Of New Orleans… I just love the unexpected, the bizarre, and the unusual. Everything that is hidden in the margins of what we call “normal” is as representative of a culture than the most expected aspect of it.

What we see in the 2 stories of this week, the macarons for dogs and the cassoulet war, is that even in the most bizarre representation of our culture, there is a part of us.

When Nicolas Nemeth, a young Frenchman in New York, invents the canine macarons and creates a start-up to distribute them, he plays on something that is inherently French: luxury. Yes, we have this image, the luxury, and the savoir-faire… So why not use it where nobody expects us to do it. That’s exactly what Nicolas does with his cookies for dogs.

As per the very friendly cassoulet war in the street of Manhattan, let’s just say that nothing like this can perpetuate our “bon vivant” image. We love our food, we love to get together and have a lot of fun. It’s part of us, part of our culture…

So, in these very unexpected, unusual, and bizarre times, maybe it’s even more important to celebrate the unexpected, the unusual, and the bizarre. Maybe that’s where we’ll find some solutions to our current worldwide and personal crisis, even if they’re unexpected, unusual, or bizarre…

To learn more about luxury macarons for dogs, the friendly cassoulet war in New York, and French culture in America, tune in to Rendez-vous d’Amérique on TV5MONDE USA. Click here for more information.

Exploring cultural diversity through the lens of bizarre cultural moments and more, Rendez-vous d'Amérique invites you on a journey to discover Francophone culture in America. Your host on this cultural experience is Didier Allouch - reporter, cinephile, and a familiar face on the red carpet. Click here to learn how you can subscribe to TV5MONDE USA and never miss an episode!

 
A French band performs at the Cassoulet War.
"So, in these very ... bizarre times, maybe it’s even more important to celebrate the unexpected"
On next week's episode, Charlotte Gainsbourg attends a special event at the French Institute Alliance Française.