Monday, May 04, 2009

Sleeping and Eating: the French Do it Best

Society at a Glance, a fascinating report just released by the OECD, reveals some fun information. Not only do the French sleep longer than citizens of other countries, but they spend more time eating, too. Over two hours a day, almost twice as much time a table as their American counterparts.

And then, with fewer waking hours remaining, they still get those 38 days of vacation.


Jay Livingston said...

Unfortunately, the survey leaves out a measure of the attention people pay, on both variables, to who they're doing it with. I'm sure the French would rank high on that one as well.

Starman said...

I think the author of this piece confused time at table with actual time eating. I'm sure the Spanish had to be a very close second in both categories.

Chris said...

Very interesting! I guess it would also have something to do with the fact that most Americans hurry through a meal, or eat on the go.

Polly-Vous Francais said...

Jay -- Yes indeed. And of course I think the report is stricly studying actual sleep.

Starman -- From what I've seen, in France there is little difference between being at table and eating. Though standing at the zinc in a cafe might qualify. I think it's because eating is so much a part of socializing in France, even if it's not eating a lot. I mean, a dinner party that starts at 8:30 and doesn't end until after midnight is considered to be 4+ hours of eating, I think. Maybe a question of semantics?

YSL guy -- True true. Anecdotally, I have to say that except for well-orchestrated picnics, I've never eaten a meal in France any place but at the table with a lot of good conversation. (I know that many French families now eat in front of the TV, but it's still at the table, I think.) And yeah, no McDonald's or Dunkin Donuts drive-thru's. I don't know if cars in France even have cup holders. Ya gotta shift all those gears.

parlez-vous-kiwi said...

Wow, I knew there was a reason I was moving to France ;)

Parisbreakfasts said...

I wish The French could teach me to sleep longer. My inner alarm will not be ignored after 4-5 hours. Not that I'm tired..still they say you need your 8 hrs.

C├ęcile Qd9 said...

38 ??? no ???

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