Cinquieme de Mai
May 04, 2006, 01:43 PM
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This Friday, May 5th, I shall lament the French loss of a minor battle to Mexicans on May 5, 1862, after Napoleon III chose to seize land in exchange for an unpaid debt. Nappie`s cousin, Austrian Archduke Maximilian, led French troops in a failed effort to take control of Mexico City. While Max ultimately did gain control of Mexico, it was for a short time, and then Mexico reverted to, well, Mexico.

As a descendant of the Norman [i.e., Norsemen] French from whom my surname springs, I will mark May 5 by patronizing a local French restaurant, raising a toast to Max & company, sipping a fine French wine, with a la carte brie and pâté on a fresh baguette. I shall ponder what might have been had my French famille maintained control of Mejico. Champagne, cognac, café au lait, croissant, fromage, amour, philosophie. Join me in marking a new American tradition: Cinquieme de Mai, Max Day!