Saturday, September 02, 2006

France even gets bull fights wrong

Leave it to France to always pick the wrong side of everything. This seems like it should be a joke, but it isn't. In French bullfights, the French cheer for the bull.

Lesser known internationally than its Spanish cousin, southeastern France has its own version of bullfighting with a vast following and a major difference: the bull is king and never killed.

In the Provencal-style bullfights, known as the "courses camarguaises" or Camargue races, the beast is not only adversary but also star, even hero. Many towns and villages have erected statues to bulls with the sort of honor the Spanish-style corrida would grant a toreador.

The story goes on to discuss the details of French bullfights and talks about its growing popularity. I found this part very telling, defining this as the most French of sports:

Though "raseteurs" are paid a price for each race and a bonus for each tassel, Allouani is one of only three or four who actually make a living from the sport.

Only in France can you have a sport where the beast is the hero and men the goats, and where the pros probably have to live off of their welfare and unemployment checks.

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