Goujat: noun, masculine, pronounced: goo-ja. A goujat is a man who lacks savour-vivre, one who is impolite, indelicate, gross, lacking in honor, dishonest.
Let’s make it simple: The word does not define a gentleman, which brings me to the topic I would like to explore today — French president François Hollande.
|Valérie Trierweiler, French president François Hollande, Julie Gayet.|
Late yesterday afternoon a one-line announcement phoned into Agence France Press by Hollande himself put an end to speculation about his future with his companion of eight years, Valérie Trierweiler.
“Je fais savoir que j’ai mis fin à la vie commune que je partageais avec Valérie Trierweiler“.
Please note (bold type) the use of first person pronouns three times in one sentence. “I am making it known that I have put an end to my partnership with Valérie Trierweiler,” he said. He further clarified to the journalist who received his call that he was speaking “personally” and not as president. Personally, I don’t see the difference which is not to say that I do not believe heads of state have a right to private lives. Still, when the man speaks he is president of France.
|Julie Gayet, Valerie Trierweiler, Segolene Royal|
A brief re-cap for those of you who have more important considerations in your lives:
- François Hollande has never been married. He finds the institution too “bourgeois.”
- He lived for — depending upon various reports — 30 years with Segolene Royal, the mother of four of his children and a former candidate for the Frenchpresidency.
- By all accounts he has a child with another prominent French woman.
- Enter Madame Trierweiler whose time overlapped with Madame Royal.
- In 2010 Hollande told Paris Match magazine, where Trierweiler was a political journalist, that she was “the love of my life.”
- Mme. Royal was quoted as saying that “François is incapable of being faithful.”
- Case in point, the denouement of the Hollande/Trierweiler partnership exploded — apparently literally — when a gossip magazine printed pictures of the French president, traveling by motor scooter to visit his “alleged” paramour, actress Julie Gayet.
- Judging from the reaction of Trierweiler to the report — she was immediately rushed to a Paris hospital and later to a presidential retreat to rest and recover from the news — the “alleged” qualifier can be removed from “affair.” If she believed the allegations, perhaps everyone else can as well.
- Some reports claim that Trierweiler hurled valuable art objects at the president.
Polls have indicated that Valerie Trierweiler was the most unpopular “first lady” in recent French history. She has, a French journalist friend of mine told me, “a volatile, jealous, impetuous personality.”
Without going into details, Trierweiler publicly humiliated Royal in a Tweet supporting another candidate against whom she was running for a regional office. Whether a Royal supporter or not, the French found her gesture shocking. This is when Trierweiler’s reputation for “loose cannon” behavior made its first public appearance.
I am not a French citizen, merely a resident and observer. I am by no means a fan of Valérie Trierweiler, however I find the off-handed, rude, insulting, humiliating one-line dispatch from François Hollande in his official write-off of their life together to be a profound commentary on the man.
It will be interesting to see if the French care one way or the other. Some may even think, “What goes around, comes around.” Never mind, the sex, lies and photographs — those are the private details. It’s his public announcement that says even more about the man.
François Hollande is not a gentleman.