As Brooke pointed out a while back, French Minister of Culture Frédéric Mitterrand (François nephew) regularly commutes via scooter. Last weekend, Mitterand injured his harm sliding on black ice (honorary CWC runner-up!) and France’s president Nicolas Sarkozy publicly chastized Mitterand at the first cabinet meeting of the year:
“I told you before the holidays that a minister is not just anybody,” the President said to Mitterrand in front of Cabinet colleagues. “A minister does not go around on a moped.”
That’s bad form, especially from a man who was (in 2007) criticized for overreacting to the theft of his son’s scooter (thanks again, Brooke) by requesting DNA testing to find the thief. Apparently his son’s ride was a more worthy model than Mitterand’s humble French-made MBK 125cc scooter.
MBK is a direct descendant of the legendary Motobecane Mobylette, as good a symbol of France as anything, and certainly less embarrassing than a Citröen limousine.
For shame, Nic! Humility and efficiency should be rewarded, always.