Concerning French-British relations (in Flying Cloud)

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Concerning French-British relations (in Flying Cloud)

Postby Nicolas » Mon Apr 02, 2012 8:39 am

Dear sir Gazis,

I am a regular reader of the Flying Cloud adventures, and I thank you for taking much of your free time to build such entertaining stories,
set in times past.

I've noticed that, every once in a while, some lines are quite bittersweet remarks about the French.
As in today's Flying Cloud episode stating "Gallic (in)efficiency", for example.

Where did you get that liking of denting the French appearance, reputation, etc. ? ;)
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Re: Concerning French-British relations (in Flying Cloud)

Postby PaulGazis » Mon Apr 02, 2012 10:13 am

Hi Nicolas,

I personally admire France. Its a haven for art, culture, and science, they make some fine aircraft, and they fought the Germans to standstill at the Marne when the British Expeditionary Force was packing its bags to skip out. They've also led the world in aviation through much of its history. Even today, I tell my friends, "If humans ever land on Mars, they probably won't be speaking English. They'll probably be speaking French."

But it's a sad historical fact that many people in England make fun of their neighbor. This has put me in a bit of a bind. To what extent do I allow my own personal feeling so to override such a recognizable aspect of English culture? I've tried to strike a balance and include some accolades -- in particular, I've been trying to work in references to the unbelievable courage the French Army showed in the face of significantly superior numbers and guns during the Great War. Perhaps I should also add a note to the Extras section. And you will note that quite early on, I made sure that one of the heroes of the story was French.

Do you have any other suggestions? If it's any consolation, the Dutch have also taken a bit of an unfair beating in this story so far. I apologize to citizens of the Netherlands as well... though I still have my doubts about that Mexican restaurant in Nordvick :)


P.S. It's quite a good restaurant, but my impression, after our hosts at the ESA insisted we dine there, was that the food had been prepared by someone who'd seen pictures of Mexican food and knew what it looked like.
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Re: Concerning French-British relations (in Flying Cloud)

Postby Sarge » Sat Nov 03, 2012 6:09 pm

Even with the retarded growth of HTA in the FC world, French aeroplane motors are probably still the benchmark. The le Rhone and Gnome rotary engines powered most of the Sopwiths as well as Nieuports, and even the vaunted German engineers reverse engineered their Oberursel rotaries from French engines.

I'm sure some of the artillerists here know far more than I about this, but didn't the French develop the 75 mm cannon that was the workhorse of military artillery for decades to come?
If I take the wings of the morning, and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea; Even there shall thy hand lead me, and thy right hand shall hold me. -Psalm 139
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Re: Concerning French-British relations (in Flying Cloud)

Postby jba8472 » Sat Jul 26, 2014 4:45 am

As a belated answer to your question about French artillery, the "Canon de 75 modele 1897", a.k.a. the French 75, was a magnificent gun and was the workhorse of the French from, well 1897, throughout the Great War. The French 75 played a crucial role in the Miracle on the Marne in 1914, along with the Paris taxicabs, in halting the German advance on Paris.

Incidentally, the French 75 is also a pretty good cocktail: shake gin, simple syrup, and lemon juice (usually in 1:0.5:0.5) over ice, strain into a champagne flute, and top it off with champagne.
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Re: Concerning French-British relations (in Flying Cloud)

Postby Kona » Mon Jul 28, 2014 7:59 pm

Indeed, when speaking as the Narrator, Paul seems to be at least fairly benign toward the French, when not downright complimentary. Speaking of the French 75's, he said in Episode 229 "Astra-Torres's standard of workmanship was excellent. Englishmen might deride Gallic engineering, but this was the land of Gauss and Leibnitz: the same nation that built the famed `75's that blasted the German Army to a standstill at the Marne and Verdun." War is a terrible business, bringing out the best and worst in human beings of every nationality. The French come in for their fair share of criticism but there are many examples in history of their fierce and unwavering participation in the overthrow of their enemies.

PS: Artillery is a particular interest of mine, having spent the Vietnam War as a gunner's mate on enclosed twin 5-inch (two different Gearing class destroyers and the light cruiser USS Oklahoma City).
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