Wednesday, March 10, 2010


Some months ago, I proposed a facetious test of  "Frenchness" which included the ability to identify the singer Benjamin Biolay as one criterion. There were howls of protest from you readers. You were French, you insisted, yet had never heard of Benjamin Biolay. I guess I can then claim credit for having broken a major story, for today we read this earth-shaking "news":

It's rumored that the French President has Chantal Jouanno - a right-wing cabinet member - on the side, while the First Lady is seeing musician Benjamin Biolay.

"The presidential marriage is breathing its last breaths," French paper Journal Du Dimanche reports. "Carla Bruni is in love with Benjamin Biolay, and the president has found solace with Chantal Jouanno."

An online French publication,, reported shortly thereafter that Bruni had been a close friend of the 37-year-old musician for many years and is now "unofficially living with him at his flat in Paris."

Those aren't the only outlets that have Carla and Nicolas saying a joint "mon Dieu!" Tuesday, Yahoo News France, Le Post and the Global Post, as well as European TV news channel iTele, gave the allegations substantial coverage.


Leo said...

I'm sure that you have read that:

Comme la langue d'Esope, l'Internet peut être la meilleure et la pire des choses.

Unknown said...

Ah, Leo, you mean the rumors aren't true! I'm shocked, shocked ...

MYOS said...

SInce I live far from Paris, I don't know whether the rumors are true. At first I dismissed the "information" as ridiculous - unfit to be printed and malicious. But then again, why not? Does it matter whether Carla Bruni and Nicolas Sarkozy truly live a married life or not? This should be easy to verify, since apparently Carla Bruni's neighborhood was blocked each evening around 9pm when her husband came back.
Now, if it were true, would it be of import? Does it change something or not? I can't make up my mind. Carla Bruni is an important part of Nicolas Sarkozy's image but they're entitled to their feuds and affairs.
Interesting though: how does such a rumor become "news", what gives it consistency, are there proofs they do not show or is it pure speculation, in which case we're back to ridiculous and malicious?

MYOS said...

Arrêts sur Images devotes a short but clever column to the topic:

Anonymous said...

Art, to go back to your frenchness test:
I found Henri Giraud, but only guessing hard. Did you picked him so in Wikipedia? I always heard him called général Giraud or Giraud, never heard of his first name.
And a gotcha: un palace.

Cincinna said...

Oh no! Say it isn't so!

It is oh so very French. And oh so very sad. I can only explain it to my American colleagues in that manner.Everything they say about the French in matters of morals, fidelity, loyalty and frivolity is true.

For we romantics, who thought that Sarko had found true love at last, disillusionment.

For all of us who are still very much in love with our own spouses after all these years, through good times and bad, we wonder why. Most of all, how could she betray her marriage vows and lose interest in such a short time. ADHD? Lack of impulse control? Ego centrism that excludes concerns for the feeling sof all others?

After all these years experience with the French, I still don't get it. Asking for help here.....