When N brought this up at a small gathering last night, I couldn't help but laugh. Apparently not a day goes by in France that some poor unlucky soul has their ring finger torn off when the ring they wear on it gets caught on some door or other daily obstacle. Talk about the perfect excuse for men not to wear their wedding rings... I told him if the day does come for us and he refuses to wear a ring I'll make him tattoo my name around that finger.
The language the writer uses in the story, however, makes me think a deeper fear lurks in the French male psyche... Jean-Michel Bader isn't just afraid of having a ring take his finger off "like a wire through butter, slicing and taking with it skin, veins, tendons." I think the fear of the doigt découpé stands in for the potential loss of another member. Or maybe they're really afraid of having their droits découpés...
Of course women must lose their fingers just as often as men (the article doesn't break down the statistics). But this whole story just seems like a load of butter to me.
I wonder what the stats are in the States.
[Incidentally, I found an apartment, and will soon be a proud denizen of the Butte aux Cailles, but am still on semi-hiatus while I finish my Woolf paper...]