Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Inside the TGV

This morning I had to go out of Paris to attend a seminar in Tours (west center of France) and I went by train, more exactly by TGV (bullet train). Before the departure I took this photo, at the station (Gare Montparnasse). I then noticed how they painted straight lines on the train to emphasize the feeling of speed when it moves... And that was precisely the purpose of my seminar: how to make objects look/sound/feel like what consumers want them to be (solid, reliable, good...). Fascinating!


  1. Hey this is the most unusual picture I've ever seen of a TGV!

    You gotta love these trains, though, they're real comfy, not too brutally expensive (look for online sales at the sncf website, and you won't believe the cool prices between Paris and the South of France, for instance) and a lot of fun to ride.

    (By the way, Michael, don't you have a bit of Trivia about the TGV's? ;)

  2. I rode TGV from Paris to Amsterdam! It was great. I read that TGV is now offering high speed transit to just began in the last month. That is fantastic!

    By the way, the video you put on yesterday's post was kind of funny. A lot of people are worried about all the outsourcing! Any time I call a customer service line, they are almost always in India.

  3. Yes I think it's fascinating. When I first looked at this photo I immediately liked the lines in it and didn't know exactly why. But when I read the text I got it, it really gives a feeling of speed.
    This is a great shot! I like the strong blue too.

    BTW, this Bush thing goes on and on, right now I'm watching David Letter program and it has a segment called "great presidential speeches". You can imagine what they show coming out of a Bush speech! Hilarious!

  4. Serendipity, Eric. What is the top speed and what is the cruising speed?

  5. Monica,

    It always amazes me how many American programs are watched outside the U.S.!!! I suppose TV and movies are our biggest export!

    By the way, is it in English? So many things seem to be dubbed and well, I have no way of knowing unless I ask you!

    I like Craig Furguson better than Dave. He's Scottish but now lives in L.A. He has an adorable accent and is very funny! Watch this video on Craig Ferguson.

  6. I don't mean to post so much today! But while watching the Craig Ferguson video, I found a hilarious one titled French Lovemaking...and how appropriate is that for Eric's blog?

    It is a comedian imitating a French accent talking to Craig.

  7. I have never been on a train like this one before. Looks like the passanger is nice and relaxed.

  8. Susan, I loved the French Lovemaking video from Craig Ferguson that you suggested.
    As a flight attendant who spends every week mostly in Paris or London, I can tell you that TV programs from the US are usually dubbed (you haven't lived till you have seen the Nanny in Italian--you will double over laughing) and our US movies usually have subtitles on TV. I have seen Leno in London,but not in other countries.
    You also haven't lived till you hear a European imitate an American accent.....we as Americans never think about how we sound to others. Just ask someone one day...our accent sounds like a twangy nasal cat when they imitate us...yet somehow the French say our accent is cute.

  9. Phoenix,

    Having to be in London and Paris so must be just horrible (she says facetiously ;) I hope you get to spend some quality time while there! Lucky you!

    It was kind of sad that so many people claiming to be French were so critical in the comment section of the video. If anyone should complain, it's the Scottish! LOL

    I mean, geesh! Lighten up and get a sense of humor!

  10. Yes, it is wonderful and I do get quality time there. It not only makes me understand their cultures better, but I get a reflection of who I am from theirs, and what makes me so very American.

  11. Kate - When the TGV clears the towns and is in the open country, it moves at 300 kpm/186 mph.

  12. Thank you Eric! I think it's the first photo of a TGV you've posted here (I could be mistaken though)!

    And yes Tomate, you know I have plenty to say on this topic.

    Louis, you are correct on the current (actual running) speed, but we at Alstom have already broken the speed of 515.3 km/h (320 mph).

    Coincidentally, this year are counting down to the new world record to be set in April (speed unknown).

    To know more about the event, and much more about these trains, you can check out this website.

    Thanks for the photo Eric, and permission Tomate!

  13. ...I was on a paris train, I emerged in London rain, and you were waiting there, swimming through apologies... (love that song)

    And Susan, thanks for those video clips - Craig Ferguson is not only funny, but awfully nice to look at!

  14. Lynn, this one is especially for you since you're writing your novel Under A Train.

    I'm not sure how international this advertisement was, but I still remember it so they at least caught my attention. A true expression of how busy our lives are and the need to stay connected! ;-)

  15. Susan in Atl! I'm still laughing! The video on French lovemaking was hilarious. Thanks.

  16. Is the upside down TGV logo as a snail an intentional design because it is the opposite of slow, or something?

  17. No tall gary, I think this was a flop by the French train operator SNCF and some clever people figured out if you turned the logo upside down it made a snail. It's very funny though!

  18. Susan, that´s right, we get a great number of american tv shows and movies here, and thank God they´re not dubbed! I don´t think I would appreciate it as much as I do if it were dubbed. Some tv shows have subtitles and some don´t, and most of them are accessible through cable tv.
    I´ve never seen Craig Furguson though. Right now I can´t check the video link, but I´ll check it later and by the comments above, I´m sure I´ll have a good laugh!

  19. I'm very touched Michael that you plugged my novel! However, the link doesn't work lol. It's for those interested. lol.

    I've never been on one of these. The stripes are indeed effective. Reminds me when my boys were small i used to paint designs on their t shirts (and queues of their friends!) - one sports day i did GO-FASTER STRIPES for all of them. You should have seen them go!! lol

    The company has achieved its aims here in giving the impression of speed at the same time as comfort - how cosy it looks in there! The lamp, the lady relaxed reading against what i presume is a table where she can get some food? Looks great.

    Are you connected with this co. then Michael? That's the impression i have today.

  20. It's Budget Day here, a propos nothing for this post but anyway:

    More money for the armed forces, intelligence services, less inheritance tax (allowance is now £350,000), capital gains tax, more help for disabled-adapted housing, help to improve homes insofar as emissions/global warming aims are catered for.road tax rises. Top rate of tax on earnings is now over £43,000 p.a. A pint of beer increases by 1p. Wine up by 5p. Cigarettes up by 11 p.

    Well there you go for those of you who may be interested in UK finances. Promises promises, huh? All looks good on paper.

  21. //... the current (actual running) speed, but we at Alstom have already broken the speed of 515.3 km/h (320 mph). Coincidentally, this year are counting down to the new world record to be set in April (speed unknown). //

    Ahem, Michael, tell your engineers to keep in mind that the train needs to stay on tracks... seems to me that if you keep breaking speed records, at some point that TGV will take off and fly, no? ;)

  22. Susan....French Love Making is an absolute riot. Is that girl really French? She sounds like Denise Darcel (is she,Denise, still alive?)
    Her acting was horrible but I loved her accent.
    We have first class ticket that we bought on line for a trip from Grenoble to Paris....can't wait!! the photo...truly different and great perspective.

  23. Thanks, Eric. A strangely arresting photo....and "right on the button" for "look and feel".

  24. Am i the only one who doesn't find French Lovemaking funny? Sorry Michael xx your links normally have me in stitches. I just think the pseudo-French accent and French-expense jokes are cheap.

  25. It's ok Lynn, it wasn't my link but Susan's. Yes, I work for Alstom, the maker of the TGV (and Eurostar for your trip to Paris!).

  26. //Am i the only one who doesn't find French Lovemaking funny? //

    No, Lynn, you're not the only one, I assure you.

  27. Glad you enjoyed it Phoenix, Michael, Pont Girl and Johhny!

    I thought it was cute. I think the funniest one is the first the post prior. He is so funny doing his monologue! And like Pont Girl says, he is nice to look at as well! I just love his accent!

    Lynn, frence expense??? I don't see how you could say that. The only expense was to Scottish men (saying they are bad lovers).

    I guess I just don't get how anyone could say that.

    But even if it was (which it wasn't in my opinion), so what? Americans laugh at ourselves ALL THE ITME. We are OFTEN the butt of jokes (start noticing) and PARTICULARLY if you are from the South, as I am. Southerners are always teased. But you know what, we have a good sense of humor about it. For example, we, ourselves pass around those email jokes making fun of redneck Southerners.

    Oh well, I do love France and find charm in the French but many do not have a very good sense of humor...especially about themselves.

  28. Lynn (and everyone),

    Regarding taxes...what percent of income is tax in the U.K.? Are there tax brackets, based on earnings as it is here? For example, if you earn between x and y you pay z but if you earn within a higher bracket, you pay a higher percentage, etc.

    This is our 2006 Federal Tax Due by bracket. Of course that is only Federal Tax. Some states have additional "State Tax" (Georgia it is 5%, Tennessee there is none) and local taxes, Medicare, (which is used for medical treatment for the elderly) and medicaid, which is for the poor (not sure if we are taxed for that directly).

    I am curious how much taxes are paid in other countries. Personally, I would be willing to pay more taxes if they improve lives.

  29. Drop us a few hints about the seminar once it is over please Eric. It would be interesting to learn how to present products like a pro. Maybe that can help us showcasing our blogs.

  30. Yes Susan, just the same as that (taxes).

    Michael how silly of me, sorry about that. So used to you providing all these links for us, that's what it was and i do enjoy them so!

    Interesting that you work for them. If and when i make it, i shall think of going all the way with you!

  31. oooh baby Lynn...and you can be sure that going all the way with you will only be Fast and in First Class!

  32. Woo hoo! With those sort of promises you can be sure i'll be coming!

  33. Well...that train looks very inviting. I could use a train ride to a far away destination right now, Tours would be fine; but I think I may be tempted to go further! Especially if they are serving wine and cheese! LOL!!

    johnnyparsons...To answer your question from yesterday; Yes..GWBush did attend Yale and Harvard. He has an MBA from Harvard, and a BA in History from Yale[though he admits he was only a "fair" student...LOL!]Here is the link from wikipedia.

    By the crack me up when you keep saying you're going to add something to your "LIST" of things to do/or see in Paris when Eric posts a photo of a place of interest to you. How long is that list now johnny??? LOL!!

  34. Did we go too far do you think, Michael? Will we get told off by Uncle Eric? Eek.

  35. Nah, I don't think so Lynn. But I was really disturbed by your comment about my links. I've tried to make up for it here with a few commercials which involved trains. I'll wait for your approval with baited breath!

    Dentyne Ice

    M6 Mobile


  36. lol Michael! Hilarious. Dentyne one i identified with those fleeting glances you get sometimes. Ahhh the end made me sad for him and laugh at same time!

    M6 eeeuuuwwww

    Orange, great body language. lol!

    As always, your links are superb. I do wish i could reciprocate; i just cannot master this blasted making a link in a comment thing. It's beyond me!