It is reported that a tradition of setting parked cars alight on New Year’s Eve has developed in France and the Government stands accused of downplaying the figures.

The French, it seems, who’ve been in bars,
Sometimes suspend their love of cars,
“But how,” you all ask, “can this be,
When they still drive the 2CV?”

The 2CV, though not bespoke,
Was surely just some kind of joke.
And when I say ‘a joke’ I mean,
That anyone could make it lean,
To left or right or sometimes both,
As it tried to outpace a sloth,
While driving down the farmer’s track,
With pigs and chickens in the back.

It’s still a much beloved car,
If that noun’s not a stretch too far,
But most of them, I have to say,
Have long since rusted right away.

But we should not too nasty be,
About this car because you see,
Though not good for a motorcade,
It was for four full decades made.

But back to where we started out,
Discussing all the drunken louts,
Who on the last night of the year,
Encouraged by consuming beer,
Go round the towns in threes and twos,
Torching the cars parked in the rues.

The Government thinks this looks bad,
And people say they think it had,
Massaged the figures, played them down,
Concerning burnt cars in the town.

“There’s different categories,” they say,
“From ‘lightly toasted’ to ‘brûlée’;
Then those ones torched by bad intent,
And ones set light by accident.

Taking all this into account,
We can announce that the amount,
Of cars destroyed on New Year’s Eve –
Quite accurate we do believe –
And contrary to common law,
Is not much different from before.

So everybody come and dance,
To celebrate New Year in France,
But if you travel very far,
P’rhaps better not to bring the car.”

Image – Wikimedia commons

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