petite anglaise

July 18, 2006

things fall apart

Filed under: Tadpole rearing, working girl — petiteanglaiseparis @ 8:00 am

I have hinted, in recent weeks, at events which were unfolding in the background. Sinister events. Events I was not at liberty to discuss on my blog, just yet.

In the meantime I stuck to the safest anecdotes, seething with frustation at not being able to write about that One Single Horrible Thing which was preying on my mind, night and day, causing dramatic (and not entirely unwelcome) weight loss, panic attacks and sleepless nights, in the beginning.

The waiting is over, and I will begin by turning back the clock to my unexplained two week hiatus at the end of April this year. Starting with a post originally written on Wednesday 26 April 2006.

Here goes.

I step into the lift, inspecting my face in the mirror for tell-tale streaks. As I make my way across the park, I wonder whether the nanny will notice that I have arrived from the direction of home, wearing jeans.

I take a few deep breaths as I approach, hoping that my facial expression does not betray my inner turmoil. I very much want to hold things together, for Tadpole’s sake.

Tadpole greets me with indifference, which is not unusual. She is far more engrossed in trying to wrestle a very large Noddy doll off one of her playmates. Her own – a more pocket sized version – lies abandoned on the floor, a grass stain across his cheek.

It would appear to be high time for us to have a mother-daughter conversation about how size isn’t (always) everything.

“Come on sweetie,” I begin, brightly, “you can’t take the big Noddy. It’s not yours. Yours is much better, because he fits in your bag, and you can take him everywhere.”

“NOOOO! I want the big Noddy!” Tadpole rages, face set in a stubborn expression which reminds me, suddenly, of her father.

“Well, that’s a shame,” I continue, with a sudden flash of inspiration, “because it’s little Noddy’s birthday today, and he wanted to invite you to his birthday party… but if you don’t want to come…”

“Can we get a birthday cake?” Tadpole enquires, playing into my hands as I knew she would. “And some candles?”

On the way home we discuss how old Noddy is today (definitely 3) and what kind of cake he would prefer. I realise the boulangerie is closed, and we settle for a chocolate swiss roll from Franprix, the only thing which looks remotely festive.

Once the candles are lit, Tadpole looks at me, suddenly anxious. She points at Noddy’s embroidered smile.

“Noddy can’t blow the candles. Look, he hasn’t got any mouth, mummy,” she says, sounding genuinely sorry for her little doll.

“Well, maybe you can do it?” I venture, trying not to dwell on the parallels between Noddy’s mouth and my self-enforced silence in the days to come. Tadpole obliges, with great enthusiasm.

I look at my daughter, her beautiful chocolate-icing coated cheeks, and wonder how on earth I have managed to make such a mess of things. Here I am, holding a fantasy birthday party, while our whole world is literally crashing down around our ears.

I was “dooced” today.

Suspended without pay, pending a dismissal meeting in ten day’s time.

Asked to collect my belongings together and leave the building immediately.

The words “faute grave” were used. Translated into English: gross misconduct.

Petite Anglaise: the blog that got me fired. Call me naïve, but I really didn’t see that coming.

Please note that due to the rather unexpected levels of traffic (most doocelike) today my host has had to redirect the blog address, create static entry page and all sorts of other tomfoolery, so we don’t bring down the shared server and disrupt other people’s service. In the meantime you may not be able to leave a comment. Hopefully things will calm down shortly, and I will still be able to post in the meantime.


  1. That’s terrible. If every blogger who wrote from time to time about stuff at work and posted a photo of himself or herself was guilty of a “faute grave”, there would be a lot of unemployed bloggers out there.

    Go get ’em girl !!!

    PS You’re much prettier than Bridget Jones

    Comment by Waterhot — July 18, 2006 @ 8:18 am

  2. Been there, done that….. (Saw the Daily Telegraph article this morning and looked for your blog site)
    Good for you!!!! Keep smiling and above all keep blogging….

    Comment by Susan Bamford — July 18, 2006 @ 8:25 am

  3. I’m so sorry that you have to go through all of this crap, but what the hell is wrong with these people? Are they complete morons to fire you over something like this? And now they’re faced with a lawsuit they cannot possibly win and, if all goes well, you may just have a lot more comfortable lifestyle than you had before…at least one with some financial cushioning. Courage, Catherine.

    Comment by Lin — July 18, 2006 @ 8:47 am

  4. Petite,

    I’m at a loss for words–this is so unexpected and devastating! I hope you can take some comfort in the fact that there are literally thousands of readers supporting you. And surely willing to witness in your defense!

    Thinking of you and wishing you all the best,

    Comment by O. — July 18, 2006 @ 8:53 am

  5. Stinkers they are.

    “The senior partner is described as “very old school”, a man who “wears braces and sock suspenders, stays in gentlemen’s clubs when in London and calls secretaries typists.”

    The least you would expect of people who stay in gentlemen’s clubs is that they are themselves gentlemen but apparently not.

    Guess there’s nothing for it but turn the blog into a book now.

    Comment by Tim Worstall — July 18, 2006 @ 9:02 am

  6. i shall echo waterhot and just say “go get em!”
    and hang in there.
    and ping their suspenders
    and what ho!!!!!
    and big up rrrespec for managing to not mention it all this time!

    Comment by lucy ex vitriolica — July 18, 2006 @ 9:18 am

  7. So, you didn’t name Them?
    Which means all they can get you for is blogging during office hours? So they then have to prove that no-one, but no-one else in their employ has EVER used the internet for non-business activities during office hours?
    And have you ever seen a work directive that mentionned that private use of the internet is a dismissable offence?
    Have they ever sent out a memo to that effect?
    Have they warned employees about internet use in general?
    So people there ever read the paper, make private phone calls, conduct any non-business business?
    Did they ever admit to monitoring internet use? akin to ‘we listen in to your phone calls’?

    I totally understand the panic you must be feeling but it seems to me They don’t have a case
    Whereas you, Petite, are about to become infamous!

    Comment by Julia — July 18, 2006 @ 9:22 am

  8. Sweet Lord! What is to become of us? What if the local Government reads my blog? I have been so much tougher on the whole country here than you have been on anyone, really.

    Hoping this means anything at all, you have my full support and sympathy… (and, yes, cut that Bridget Jones thing out, please — no comparison here. To start with, I would never bear to read her blog…)

    Comment by Loxias — July 18, 2006 @ 9:22 am

  9. Ooh and ouch – this is a biggie.

    Not what anyone needs to happen – especially as you’ve just committed yourself to a mortgage..this is horrible.

    But you know, Dooce’s life changed for the better as a result of her being dooced and I bet yours will turn around too…you’re that kind of person.

    Good luck with the lawsuit – and I really hope you can make something positive out of this mess. I know you will.

    Comment by Geena — July 18, 2006 @ 9:27 am

  10. Shame on them, don´t they realise there is no such thing as bad publicity,anyway all you need now is for a major cola manufacturer to advertise on your blog and you may never need to work again. Good luck

    Comment by Robert — July 18, 2006 @ 9:29 am

  11. Accountants can be incredibly stupid folk. Got get ’em petite and win that law suit!

    Comment by Lost in France — July 18, 2006 @ 9:34 am

  12. Oh my God, Petite! How did they find out? I’m so, so sorry; losing your job must have been such a shock. Hope you win your legal battle – frankly, I’ve never seen anything about work on your blog that merits a ‘faute grave’, and I don’t see why using occasional work time for blog writing is any worse than using occasional work time for e-mail writing (which, let’s face it, everyone does nowadays, probably even the toffs who decided to fire you…)

    Bon courage pour la suite!

    Comment by Grande Anglaise — July 18, 2006 @ 9:38 am

  13. OH.MY.GAWD! What a nightmare. Good luck with the lawsuit. I’m sure lots of bloggers (myself included) are getting paranoid now…

    Comment by retailtherapist — July 18, 2006 @ 9:44 am

  14. I can’t believe your employers reacted in such an exaggerated way. You’ve never put anything remotely specific about your work in this blog – not so much as a hint about what the company does or where it is (apart from being in Paris obviously!) and surely no one could take offence at the couple of anecdotes you included a long time ago.

    Good luck with the case – I hope it doesn’t take too long to get to court. I don’t know what it’s like in France but here in Italy it takes YEARS to get to court.

    In the meantime how are you managing? I hope something better and less repressive is on the horizon. (very nice photo by the way!)

    Comment by Hazy — July 18, 2006 @ 9:58 am

  15. What a nice picture, poppet. You look reet tidy.

    Comment by anna — July 18, 2006 @ 10:01 am

  16. Petite, I’m so sorry. But every cloud has a sliver lining – your blog will be even more famous now.

    I was sacked for faute grave from my job in Paris earlier this year. I asked for flexible working conditions after my daughter was born – provoking rather unpleasant emotions in my coworkers. I still don’t trust myself to blog about it, give it time.

    I trust you’ve found another job?


    Comment by Francesca — July 18, 2006 @ 10:04 am

  17. I’m terribly sorry that this happened to you. I hope that once again, things are going to start getting better for you and Tadpole. I read your blog all the time, and I find strength in your posts. I don’t believe this “faute grave” of yours should’ve resulted in termination of your emplyment. Good luck with your case.

    Comment by Tracey — July 18, 2006 @ 10:05 am

  18. Well Catherine, you were naive but the publicity you get from this should set you up for a better future as a writer. Get that book deal…..or have you already got one? Who did write Belle du Jour?

    Comment by Parkin Pig — July 18, 2006 @ 10:06 am

  19. I read your blog everyday from New Brunswick, Canada. It is the first thing I look for online each day. I do not intend for this to sound mean-spirited, but seriously, did you not see this coming? Stuffy, proper English bosses, and all! Unfortunately, your employer has all the power in these situations. You’ve sealed your fate by using their computer system to work on your private project without authorization. You’re dooced, which is another way to say you’re screwed. Whatever satisfaction you get out of a protracted legal battle will probably be marginal at best. It is just a sad but true reality of the working world.

    You strike me as a plucky girl and I am sure that you will land upright after all of this! I do enjoy your writing and hope the opportunity to read Petite continues. But now I am just being selfish. Bon chance!

    Comment by Forest Green — July 18, 2006 @ 10:15 am

  20. What awful news. Obviously this sort of situation brings about interesting questions on workers’ rights, privacy issues etc. I don’t mean to sound callous, but it will be interesting to see how this develops. Good luck with your fight.

    While I realise that the principle is important, perhaps good things will come out of this- put together some publicity for you, and some time and space to think and to write, and maybe your writing could replace your job!

    I have been reading the archives of your blog for the last weeks since I found it, and had it been a book, I would have bought it. You write extremely well, and I guess I am particularly interested in your anecdotes since I have recently moved to Paris.

    Anyway, best of luck to you.

    Comment by Jenny — July 18, 2006 @ 10:18 am

  21. How completely ridiculous these corporate machines are! What on earth has happened to your bosses’ sense of humour and fun …sigh. Good luck fighting them!

    Comment by Andy — July 18, 2006 @ 10:19 am

  22. Petite. This is terrible. I was fired recently and it really does things to your self confidence even if it is “through no fault of your own”. You have gone ahead and bought the flat anyway though. Does that mean you have managed to find a new job?

    Comment by Louise — July 18, 2006 @ 10:21 am

  23. An addition after noticing the title of the Telegraph article:

    In my opinion, you write an awful lot better than Helen Fielding! I cannot imagine you using “Wrote blog and got the sack. V bad. Will sue” as a title!

    Comment by Jenny — July 18, 2006 @ 10:23 am

  24. Unbelievable !
    And what a suspense … I guess we’ll get the end of the story in the next days/weeks, with your following posts !
    Doesn’t this “posting style” show that your site is more a novel than a diary, by the way ? If now you go in the press, I guess that your situation has cleared up since April …
    But cheer up anyway !

    Comment by Yogi — July 18, 2006 @ 10:52 am

  25. Long time reader, first time commenter.I hope you take them to the cleaners. When are these people going to learn that its always the blogger that comes out on top? You represent the people and to all our eyes you are percieved as the victim. Gosh I’m in a mood.

    Comment by Monty — July 18, 2006 @ 11:03 am

  26. Oh Petite, that just sucks.
    Plain and simple; it’s unfair and uncalled for.

    Comment by Jack Hartley — July 18, 2006 @ 11:05 am

  27. Just wanted to echo what Waterhot said. Chin up and sic the lawyers on ’em!

    Comment by Steve — July 18, 2006 @ 11:09 am

  28. Hi !

    Just goes to show that all kinds of cr*p goes down pendant les vacances.

    Tenez bon. Faut battre le rappel. Article this morning in The Daily Telegraph was favorable. Refer French reporters to it …


    Comment by L'Amerloque — July 18, 2006 @ 11:09 am

  29. You should have no trouble winning that one. Your employers are terribly english -to think they can win a “faute grave” aux prudhommes with compensation on such flimsy grounds. I’m sure it was a horrible experience but look on the bright side -you should be able to pay for your new apartement with what you’ll win! Tiens bon.

    Comment by ann — July 18, 2006 @ 11:14 am

  30. Long time lurker, very occasional commentor, but just wanted to offer you my best wishes. Someone will be very lucky to have you in their employ.

    I just wish I was a publisher of some sort and could offer you a book deal…

    Good luck

    Comment by Mr Angry — July 18, 2006 @ 11:16 am

  31. Good grief. What planet are they on?! Not wishing to entirely burst their bubble, but do they really think that the masses are going to be able to identify the company from a couple of snapshots of you?

    Good luck with your lawsuit…. I wish you the very best.


    Comment by morgalou — July 18, 2006 @ 11:22 am

  32. i blog about work too. sometimes. hmmm. but you are very brave, indeed, for standing up for yourself! i’ve always liked reading your blog, and i find it very inspiring, how you overcome things that could’ve sent me otherwise at the bottom of the bed.

    two thumbs up PA, i wish you the best!

    Comment by swann — July 18, 2006 @ 11:27 am

  33. This is bullshit and it makes me so mad. I’m truly sorry for you, Petite, and i send you all my best wishes from Spain.

    Comment by Uma B. — July 18, 2006 @ 11:32 am

  34. You know what I think. Mainly, big credit for not taking it lying down.

    Personally I thought the Telegraph headline was quite witty, if the Bridget Jones angle is to be played.

    Comment by JonnyB — July 18, 2006 @ 11:38 am

  35. Just noticed ‘girl with a otm’ has got a book out that’s being serialised (expurgated)in the ST!

    Comment by Parkin Pig — July 18, 2006 @ 11:40 am

  36. oh dear…what a mess. agree with waterhot and i think i speak for a lot of us: man, we’d all be out of a job if all our employers were like that. what harebrained reasoning, too: “partners at the leading British [company] [name here] alleged that she made herself and therefore the firm identifiable by including her own photograph on the weblog.” even if that were true (making the company petite worked for identifiable by posting the photos petite posted i mean), it begs the following four questions:


    apart from anything else, no-one knew (or, i wager, cared very much, or wanted to know) which company petite worked for. by taking the incredibly well thought-out step of doocing petite (and thus provoking a well-deserved court action), however, i do now know the name of the company. “made identifiable” indeed. as an aside to future commenters: spare petite some moderating efforts and refrain from naming or even alluding to the company name here, even though it has been published elsewhere – dunno much about french industrial relations laws but still.

    as to the alleged blogging during work hours – ah, the employer wet dream of the electronic plantation. reminds me of the old bill hicks routine: “hey hicks, why aren’t you working? – cos there’s nothing to do. – well, just pretend like you’re working! – why don’t you pretend like I’m working? hell, you get paid more than me, you do the fantasising!

    chin up petite! keep on blogging – and on a slight tangent: hope everyone reading this is unionised ;-)

    Comment by sydneysnider — July 18, 2006 @ 11:41 am

  37. You have a degree, write extremely well, speak good French, have all this publicity and speak English as a native language.

    I predict once all this over you will find something much more exciting than your old job and be glad it happened.

    Comment by Claire — July 18, 2006 @ 11:48 am

  38. Being fired on the spot is awful, you poor thing. I hope you succeed in your legal case, that firm has behaved unfairly and unlawfully imo, even if you were blogging in their time that does not warrant sacking on the spot. And not being able to talk about it all this time….
    Hope something much better comes up for you.

    Comment by Jude — July 18, 2006 @ 12:03 pm

  39. Commiserations on losing you job over blogging. Your employer was completely wrong for firing you for this blog. I am sure you will have no problem finding a new job with your skills.

    And hell you got in the Daily Telegraph…not bad.

    Comment by Andrew Ian Dodge — July 18, 2006 @ 12:05 pm

  40. PS Hope the person who tried to out you a while back had nothing to do with your ex-employer seeing your blog.

    Comment by Jude — July 18, 2006 @ 12:05 pm

  41. Jesus, losing my job over my blog is something I worry about often. That’s why nobody–and I mean NOBODY–in Korea (where I currently work) knows about it.

    Still, I always cut or distort my face from posts. In your particular case, even though your photo is on your blog, I would never be able to recognize you on the street.

    What happened to you is awful, but I’m sure you’ll get the better end of the stick. As well as that book deal!

    Comment by Pia — July 18, 2006 @ 12:15 pm

  42. Two other bloggers I know have recently been in court cases with employers in Paris (not due to blogs, however).

    And they both won.

    So will you. The French employee protection laws will work in your favor.

    Best of luck to you.

    Comment by Ronica — July 18, 2006 @ 12:19 pm

  43. You’d think they’d have some sense of perspective on this. Everyone has a bit of spare time every now and then in an office and it doesn’t seem you did anything to really embarrass them as a company or as individuals. Good luck with your case and with getting a new job.

    Comment by Oink — July 18, 2006 @ 12:34 pm

  44. Oh crikey. I’m going to be on Radio Five Live in a few minutes. And other newspapers have been in touch. After such a long time keeping my head down, it’s all rather surreal.

    Comment by petite — July 18, 2006 @ 12:34 pm

  45. Please be careful with Victoria Derbyshire. I find her to be an awful, self satisfied broadcaster who tries to play the devils advocate but comes off like agressive fool more often than not. But I’m sure you’ll be far to clever to be caught out her patronising patter.

    Comment by Monty — July 18, 2006 @ 12:42 pm

  46. I bet the bunch of idiots you used to work for are enjoying reading that this morning. They may find employing ‘typists’ a bit more difficult henceforth.

    Any publishers/agents who are reading this – I would get in fast with the fat advance.

    In the meantime, I’m beside myself with admiration about how well you’re carrying on with life.



    I feel like pinging their suspenders myself

    Comment by Paola — July 18, 2006 @ 12:42 pm

  47. Blow me down. She was nice for once. It is very very strange to hear someone explain their story on a radio news programme when you as the listener are fully aware of all the details and more! Please keep us posted on your other media engagements.

    Comment by Monty — July 18, 2006 @ 12:52 pm

  48. Hi Katherine,

    I live in Nice and just heard you on 5live – you sounded great! Good luck with the court case – I know how hard things like this can be in France!

    I’m looking forward to reading your blog.


    Comment by Zoe — July 18, 2006 @ 12:53 pm

  49. Petite!

    Fame is knocking on your door!

    Just remember We Knew You First!

    Your Readers/Commenters/Lurkers!

    Comment by Julia — July 18, 2006 @ 12:56 pm

  50. Radio Five Live !!! how fab [remember not to swear]


    Comment by andre — July 18, 2006 @ 12:57 pm

  51. A few years ago I got into rather hot water. When my boss got wind of the publicity she asked me who had revealed where I worked. It turned out that a reporter who knew I worked in a school phoned numerous schools to speak to me. Fortunately my boss has a robust sense of humour.
    I can see. and could see then, (it was pointed out by others) how things might have taken a more sinister turn.
    It’s a tight corner and a nasty one to be in. If you aren’t careful the media can be very intrusive. They have lots of column inches to fill and as far as they are concerned there is no bad press. I got totally fed up with what my fifteen generated in the end.
    Good luck Petite.

    Comment by meredic — July 18, 2006 @ 1:01 pm

  52. Well there you go then, being fired just could be the best thing that has happened to you. I’d listen if I could, but cant get radio 5 in Italy! Good luck Petite!

    Comment by nicki — July 18, 2006 @ 1:02 pm

  53. have you been on yet? did I miss it?

    Comment by andre — July 18, 2006 @ 1:05 pm

  54. What’s important, I think, is not the lawsuit but your emotional and practical well-being. Do you feel that you’re recovering from the shock and embarrassment of the abrupt dismissal? You’ve done nothing of which you should be ashamed, yet for a person so discreet as you have been to be portrayed as a miscreant must feel terrible. To have this on top of the other changes in your life would break many people. I admire you for having been so apparently calm, and hope that it’s not too far from your reality. You have many public friends here, and I believe private ones as well, who will support you as best they can. I hope that you have, or will soon find, new employment and the conditions you need to prosper. One day Tadpole will know, as we do, how very fortunate she is to have such a fine mother. That you have kept your anger and hurt from her is further testament to that.

    Best wishes, of course, for the legal proceedings.

    Comment by Bill — July 18, 2006 @ 1:08 pm

  55. Ouch…hope everything turns out for the best.

    You’ve got to like the fact that by seeking to protect their identity and image, the company has done themselves far more harm than you could ever have dreamed of doing.

    Good luck!

    Comment by Magpie — July 18, 2006 @ 1:11 pm

  56. Chère Petite,
    Very often a new, unknown, better door opens to you, after a familiar one is being slammed in your face. And however hard and scary it might feel, it’s always for the better. Don’t worry too much, there’s barely any time for that. Only time for action!
    I’ve been reading your blog for over a year now, and you wouldn’t believe how much I love it: the support I found in it, in my own bad moments, when I feel low and pessimistic, when I feel my own writing’s going nowhere, the entertainment you provide, those reflections on life, love, family, Franprix… I could go on forever!
    I’m starting my own blog these days, after months of hesitating, of feeling that I’d suck at it, of finding all the best/worst excuses in the world not to do it, when it’s obviously the one and only thing I dream to do: and YOU convinced me to do it. I owe you such a big one!!
    So petite, thank you for giving me so much, thank you for being an almost daily presence in my life, my petite friend whom I’ve never met, who lives a few stops up the Ligne 11 from me, with whom I feel I share so much, thank you for being the friend who always writes…
    And I find out today that the Good Lord also blessed you with very good looks!!

    Comment by Ayme — July 18, 2006 @ 1:12 pm

  57. C’est vraiment incroyable, je suis désolé pour toi. On a vu dans le sud de la France, il y a 6 mois une affaire d’un professeur viré parce que son blog racontait sa vie professionnelle. Mais il a été réintégré! Je pense que cela doit faire jurisprudence pour ton affaire en justice, en tout cas je l’espère.
    Bonne chance!

    Comment by Thomas — July 18, 2006 @ 1:13 pm

  58. Thinking of you, and wishing you all the best.

    Comment by Mathieu — July 18, 2006 @ 1:18 pm

  59. Wow! Gross misconduct seems a severe punishment, rather than getting a warning. I never saw anything to indicate your (former) employer. However, if they didn’t want publicity, and to be linked to your site, then having their name in the Daily Telegraph isn’t going to help them!

    Comment by Hywel Mallett — July 18, 2006 @ 1:22 pm

  60. WOW! I’m so sorry Petite – hope everything works out for the best – what is the saying? When one door closes another door opens??


    Comment by Kasey — July 18, 2006 @ 1:23 pm

  61. This is crazy, Petite. Imagine how bloody surprised I was when, sitting on the train this morning, I read the article in the paper. It was very surreal. The blog has well and truly entered the mainstream. Best of luck in the case. They appear to be completely out of order and I hope you wipe the floor with them!!

    Comment by David In London — July 18, 2006 @ 1:35 pm

  62. As Sydney says, now we all know who the Silly So and Sos who fired you are – and we are definitely not amused.

    Yes, I’d put my faith in the Prudhommes – your ex employers haven’t got a leg to stand on (as other posters have pointed out).

    Have put Five Live on so I can hear you,

    Bon courage!


    Comment by Clara — July 18, 2006 @ 1:45 pm

  63. Shall we all just try to keep our composure.
    I note that many of the entries are bordering on the euphoric.

    Comment by Trevor — July 18, 2006 @ 1:49 pm

  64. As lots of people have pointed out, your previous employers have shot themselves in the foot and given you some very positive publicity.
    Let’s hope the legal proceedings are not too painful and long drawn out but all your readers are rooting for you and crossing their fingers that you get the £54,000 – at the very least – and that your newfound fame creates a choice of much better jobs with a reasonable boss who treats you like a human being.
    Anyone who applies for a position with your old firm must be masochistic or desperate!
    All power to your elbow!!

    Comment by Sablonneuse — July 18, 2006 @ 1:54 pm

  65. So sorry, Petite. However, I genuinely think that this means there are much, much better things to come! Hold on to that legendary strength of yours and remember that these people who fired you are only ever going to be just that. You have talent, imagination, creativity, sensitivity and spark and you’re worth so much more than working your life away for people who only want to dull your character.

    Sending a big hug your way…

    Comment by redlady — July 18, 2006 @ 2:02 pm

  66. While I read everyone’s blog when I have a break at work, I DO NOT access or write on my own blog from work, and this is exactly why. I don’t even READ my own blog at work.

    This is probably the best thing that has every happened to you, PA! The publicity, the freedom…the opportunities that can evolve from such a controversial case. I think as a writer (speaking of you, that is), this can be the start of something great.

    Um, I am curious of how you were able to purchase your new flat with the suspension and all…I read somewhere that banks provide mortgage loans there based on current income. Maybe that means you found another means of employment…hell, I’m just being nosey now and incredibly off the subject.

    Comment by Noire Dire — July 18, 2006 @ 2:06 pm

  67. Holy crap! I am shocked! I must say I never saw that one coming either.

    Strange now to reread your 2005 poisson d’avril post.
    Is this a case of reality being stranger than fiction?

    Good luck with the court case. It must be a nerve-racking experience.

    Comment by Mike — July 18, 2006 @ 2:06 pm

  68. Can you podcast the Radio Five Live interview?…

    Comment by Noire Dire — July 18, 2006 @ 2:09 pm

  69. I followed Dooce’s similar story back in the U.S.. At least you have French labour law to back you up!

    Comment by Curiosa — July 18, 2006 @ 2:10 pm

  70. Oh, and good luck with the lawsuit! I’m so proud of you for standing up for yourself and for standing up to them!!!

    Comment by Noire Dire — July 18, 2006 @ 2:11 pm

  71. I hope you got some money out of the newspapers.

    Take them to the cleaners! They’re wrong and I’m sure they know it too.

    If you ever turn your blog into a book, the publicity is already done! : )

    Comment by Java — July 18, 2006 @ 2:17 pm

  72. Petite, what a horrible thing to have happened. I’ve read your blog in its entirety and if there is anything a judge could find even remotely fire-worthy where your ex-employer is concerned, I’ve somehow missed it.

    The firm does not stand a snowball’s chance in hell of winning in court and my guess is that they’ve begun to realize that already. Good luck handling the whirlwind of media attention and somehow remaining sane.

    Comment by Francaise de Coeur — July 18, 2006 @ 2:32 pm

  73. Heard you on 5 live this morning and thought what a pathetic attitude your bosses had over your blog. I wish you all the very best in both your claim and the search for a new position.
    Bonne chance!

    Comment by Barrie — July 18, 2006 @ 2:33 pm

  74. I’m in agreement with Thomas when he says:

    “On a vu dans le sud de la France, il y a 6 mois une affaire d’un professeur viré parce que son blog racontait sa vie professionnelle. Mais il a été réintégré! Je pense que cela doit faire jurisprudence pour ton affaire en justice”

    But I wouldn’t want to return to somewhere who was so keen to kick me out at the drop of a (totally unjustifiable) hat. Take the (hopefully forthcoming) money and make the most of the opportunity.

    Thinking of you, Bon courage,

    Une Fille

    Comment by Une Fille — July 18, 2006 @ 2:35 pm

  75. Corrine Maier (Bonjour Paresse) wasn’t even fired! She wrote a book, not a blog.
    Give them hell, as the Weasley Bros said when they left Hogwarts.

    Comment by elisabeth — July 18, 2006 @ 2:35 pm

  76. My sympathies. As somebody above said, when one door closes, another door opens.

    Comment by Amy Alkon — July 18, 2006 @ 2:45 pm

  77. I think it’s only a matter of time before someone contacts you about a possible film script! That’ll show those twits at your old firm… Hang in there, things are never as good as they seem or as bad as they seem. :)

    Comment by Nick T — July 18, 2006 @ 2:46 pm

  78. I am appalled…as an avid lunchtime reader, so to speak i feel it is time to comment, I see this type of corporate behaviour as a sign of stagnation, oblivious to the world of change which they should embrace, I have also been subject to the bin liner due to no reason of my making…however i no have a better job, life and spirit…i wish you and tadpole well

    Comment by Bfish1000 — July 18, 2006 @ 3:02 pm

  79. As an Human Resources professional in the States, the first thing that came to mind after reading the post before clicking on the link to the article was,’That sounds like unlawful termintation to me–I hope she sues.’ I know nothing of French employment laws, but those louts have a lot of nerve implying that your blog defames them. Any company with execs unwilling or afraid to address this one-on-one, without jumping right to termination, are not worth working for. It wouldn’t go far over here, I’ll tell you that much.

    Good luck, dear. I know where you can get a few witnesses, if you need them. :-)

    Comment by Leslie — July 18, 2006 @ 3:03 pm

  80. Posted a copy of the story here.

    I’m hoping others will link to it.

    Comment by Amy Alkon — July 18, 2006 @ 3:06 pm

  81. Petite,

    I am very sorry for such a situation. I have enjoyed your blog for almost 2 years now, and your candid & affable writing style has many times inspired my own. Even being honest the turmoil you’re involved in at the moment has given readers pause to consider the power of the written as opposed to the spoken word.

    Of course, we do not doubt that the future brings plentiful opportunities and whatever your decision you will put both you & Tadpole in the best position you can.

    As a lawyer I have often seen the law being used by the larger/richer/greedier party to assert their position/ego/reputation. I hope you have fantastic people supporting you today & beyond. I wish you all the best with that and one day hope to read a ground-breaking judgment.

    Comment by mary quite contrary — July 18, 2006 @ 3:20 pm

  82. Hey Petite
    You even hit the news sites in South Africa – good one! I’m sure some great opportunities are in store for you! Best of luck and to little tadpole too!

    Comment by Angie — July 18, 2006 @ 3:21 pm

  83. With your literary skills you are clearly wasted (trad sense)working for a bunch of FCA’s. And I speak as one myself.



    Comment by Paul — July 18, 2006 @ 3:22 pm

  84. You can listen to Radio Five Live, and listen again afterwards, via the BBC radio website.

    Comment by Jude — July 18, 2006 @ 3:22 pm

  85. hello all,

    Petite, I too firmly believe that you have a good case for the prudhommes, maybe it won’t even go that far…if your ex bosses have any sense that is.

    In the meantime…are you okay??? how will you manage financially?

    I wish you luck, this is a turning point in your life and you know what? you even look like you should be famous…
    gros bisous

    Comment by croque madame — July 18, 2006 @ 3:25 pm

  86. wow, petite — i didn’t see this one coming at all! i agree that a warning would have been more appropriate. seems like they just stepped into a situation they were not prepared for. go get ’em!

    also, i agree with others who have said that a book deal MUST be in your future. your writing is engaging and wonderful, and i wish you all the best.

    back to lurking now for me!

    Comment by franko — July 18, 2006 @ 3:28 pm

  87. good luck, cath, and i’m confident that you’ll win your case.

    Comment by zed — July 18, 2006 @ 3:30 pm

  88. Whaaat?!?
    This is scandalous, horrendous and sooo unfair!
    I’ve been reading this blog for a while and I just cannot see how this blog could possibly have jeopardised your work or the firm’s repute.
    I can’t believe it. It’s good you’re doing all you can to defend yourself. Maybe they need to learn a new French phrase which is extremely serious here, “licenciement abusif”.
    I hope that somehow you’re getting there – even tho I do not doubt it a minute.
    All the best petite et Vive la liberté d’expression!

    Comment by Karen — July 18, 2006 @ 3:37 pm

  89. I thought you were very discreet about your work. Good on you for fighting back.

    Happy belated birthday to Noddy too.

    Comment by dongurigal — July 18, 2006 @ 3:46 pm

  90. If I understood correctly from the Five Live interview (which I listened to at work with the sound as low as possible while still being sort of audible!) you’ve just come to end of your notice period. Did you spend that in the office and, if so, I immagine the atmosphere wasn’t very easy?

    Good luck with your job hunting and I hope you find something much more creative and interesting.

    Comment by Hazy — July 18, 2006 @ 3:49 pm

  91. If you’ve never been sacked before then it’s quite a shock the first time around. The reality is, practically everybody gets fired from a job at least once in their professional lifetimes. I’ve been given the boot twice: once while as a secretary in a financial planner’s office (he fired me so as to give my job to the wife of some man with whom he was doing some big deal — he even had me TRAIN my own replacement by lying to me and saying she was new part-time office help) and the second time was while I was an I.T. consultant and I had a huge blow-up with the client, who was an unreasonable ass. Once I got over the shock, I have to say each time it ended up being the best thing that ever happened to me and I landed on my feet in an even BETTER job. The same will happen for you — something even bigger and better is going to happen for you — and hopefully you’ll also end up winning the lawsuit, too. Way to be a trend-setter!

    By the way, fabulous photo of you with the Louvre!

    Comment by The Bold Soul — July 18, 2006 @ 3:51 pm

  92. And by the way, I think you should contact Heather over at and ask her advice on how to turn YOUR blog into a serious income generating machine. Did you know she is supporting her family with her blog, and her husband was able to quit HIS dead-end job too?

    Comment by The Bold Soul — July 18, 2006 @ 3:52 pm

  93. Petite,

    Go get ’em. Don’t let the ….. get you down


    Comment by sp999 — July 18, 2006 @ 3:52 pm

  94. ‘the world is full of people not worth knowing’ sometimes includes the boss

    Comment by jason — July 18, 2006 @ 3:54 pm

  95. Say did he ask you to stop it ? Tell you what was the problum with your blog. Did he have a talk with you at all about the activity ? if not then you did not know him at all and got caught .

    He was wrong to act first and so hard, some are like that men and women .Now itis your turn to go to WAR that is life with some. People you know that.

    Comment by brian ross — July 18, 2006 @ 4:07 pm

  96. Petite,

    I am so, so sorry to hear this. I hope you’re OK or at least coping.

    Best wishes,


    Comment by Frances — July 18, 2006 @ 4:12 pm

  97. Also long-time silent reader… I fancy you’re on the cusp of something great, but bl**dy hell, you must have been through the wringer these past few months. I hope you’re holding up well on your wave of publicity – good things will undoubtedly come, doors opening and all that.

    Comment by lottie — July 18, 2006 @ 4:13 pm

  98. I haven’t been around here all that long, but this new ordeal just blows my mind. I can’t believe a personal blog can cause so much trouble. I can’t even imagine what would happen if people at my work found my blog and read about what I say about them and my job, haha. Anyways, you are a great writer and I think, with all this publicity and a great chance to win this lawsuit (hopefully), that you should set your sights high. Like most have said, now would be a perfect time to write a book.

    Good luck with everything.

    Comment by Savannah — July 18, 2006 @ 4:16 pm

  99. Ouch! Hope you find a new, and (got to be) better job soon, if you haven’t already. However to all the give’ em hell commenters, most firms have ‘no personal use of facilities’ and ‘no comment’ clauses in their employment contracts – we can’t use any unapproved sites – not even the Beeb. Not meaning to sound like ‘cold comfort’ – reaction extreme for private company, unless they have state/military links. Lots of sympathy and PLEASE put 5live interview on blog, would love to hear your voice, now that we know what you look like.

    Comment by J — July 18, 2006 @ 4:17 pm

  100. Oh dear poor [firm]. I trust the prud’hommes and Messrs Sue, Grabbit et Runne will do you proud and get you monetary recompense to add to the spiritual revenge…

    Bonne chance

    Comment by Francis — July 18, 2006 @ 4:18 pm

  101. Well, I hate to rain on the love-in, but I think that your employer has a point. You have made a few comments about your employer and colleagues that I think have been less that discrete. Working for such a traditional employer I think that you could have shown better judgement and avoided all reference to your work.

    I also think that you’ve taken the wrong course in going public with this news while your legal action is pending. This now looks less like a crusade against wrong and more like a money-grabbing excercise.

    And remember that publicity is a double edged sword. The Telegraph and Five Live may sound very exciting, but I wonder how you will feel if the Sunday People starts grubbing around in your sex-life?

    Comment by Neal Cassady — July 18, 2006 @ 4:21 pm

  102. How did “The Boss” find out?

    Comment by Kirsty — July 18, 2006 @ 4:21 pm

  103. from manila, i support you all the way. filipino bloggers must take note in your case. the philippine daily inquirer (the country’s most widely read broadsheet) has printed your case and i hope you shall win the case.

    Comment by julsitos — July 18, 2006 @ 4:24 pm

  104. Hi, so so so sorry to hear about this. I’ve never posted here before but I do check into your blog occasionally and your writing is fantastic. As one of the above posters predicted, you will move on to bigger and better things (bet it doesn’t feel much like that now though!). Best of luck with everything! We’re all thinking of you and Tadpole.

    Comment by Sally — July 18, 2006 @ 4:24 pm

  105. salut

    tu est l meme vie comment moi sauf que je habite l sud d france..

    Comment by pierrechanter — July 18, 2006 @ 4:27 pm

  106. hey petite

    i knew this already- u didnt mention it when i met you, but my sis did. AND as you know, i got ‘dooced’ too… from my residency. It hurts like fuck, to know people are picking apart your writings about YOUR life, and find them ‘grossly misconductive’ or whatever …! it hurts after you leave as well, and they still have access to your thoughts, and so you have to censor them… and you no longer have that solace in expression or just ramblings…

    oooo i have to stop i might cry!!!

    Comment by piupiu — July 18, 2006 @ 4:29 pm

  107. I read in The Daily Telegraph about this, and immediately searched for your blog. I’m really sorry to ehar about this, but good luck with the court case.

    Your blog is hilarious, by the way.

    Comment by Tom L — July 18, 2006 @ 4:34 pm

  108. So sorry to hear about this, seems quite ridiculous. I’ll mention it on my blog, seems like a great time to make lemonade out of lemons.

    Comment by Simon Phipps — July 18, 2006 @ 4:39 pm

  109. As another long-time lurker and well-wisher, just wanted to send commiserations on the firing, thanks for keeping the blog in the first place (belated happy blog-birthday, and huge congratulations at fighting your corner.
    Have to aay that their website really does them no favours at all – I’m not sure your comment added anything you wouldn’t deduce from it even from the first few screens.
    And I loved the fantasy birthday party – been there, done that, and it’s what they remember years later (along with how you’ve dealt with stuff).
    All the best.

    Comment by Pippa — July 18, 2006 @ 4:54 pm

  110. Hi

    Sorry to hear this. Very interesting reading your blog. Best of wishes and take them to court for unfair dismissal.

    Greetings or ‘Groete’ as we say in Afrikaans


    Comment by Johan Botha — July 18, 2006 @ 4:55 pm

  111. Philippines, South Africa? I’d be really grateful if readers could send me links to where they see an article. I have no idea who has picked up the press release which went out on the AFP wire today in English…

    Comment by petite — July 18, 2006 @ 4:58 pm

  112. you are naive PA, and that is so beautiful of you. i am a patient reader/witness that there was nothing offensive for your managers going in your posts. good luck be with your side

    Comment by hera — July 18, 2006 @ 5:00 pm

  113. You are a great writer, a nice person, a good mother and I hope to hear that you and Tadpole will be fine from now on !

    All the Best !

    Comment by Frangnol — July 18, 2006 @ 5:03 pm

  114. Sorry for all the stress, Petite.

    And shocked to see how little [they] were paying you. I always thought you were overqualified.

    If, when the dust settles, you still need a job, and would like to know about some other, more rewarding things that linguists can do, email me.

    I suppose you’ve thought about the possible ramifications of discussing this on the blog. Those creeps’ll be watching you.

    Hang in there. And congratulations on the flat.

    Comment by Claire — July 18, 2006 @ 5:03 pm

  115. Radion Five Live link here for one week, apparently

    The relevant bit starts at 3:39:30 or thereabouts…

    Comment by petite — July 18, 2006 @ 5:13 pm

  116. Ohhhhhhhhh sod ’em – what a bunch of accountants. Sounds like you have enough publicity to nab a book deal anyway. Your talents are wasted being a “typist”, sometimes you get shoved in a different direction because the one you’re going in is all wrong.

    Good luck

    Comment by Alicia — July 18, 2006 @ 5:19 pm

  117. As a long time lurker I’m not sure what I can say except how very sorry I am this happened. I can’t imagine that they have much of a case and the negative publicity they are receiving certainly can’t be helping them. You’re a wonderful writer and your fans will follow you.

    Comment by Mint — July 18, 2006 @ 5:20 pm

  118. That’s one UK firm I will never give any business to!

    I have missed you blog on Expatica and now I see why. Don’t let the stress get to your and Tadpole.

    Comment by American in Paris — July 18, 2006 @ 5:26 pm

  119. Good for you for fighting back, petite. Good for you.

    *keeping fingers crossed*

    Comment by emily — July 18, 2006 @ 5:27 pm

  120. Hey Petite,

    De-lurking to say “Sock it to ’em”. I think in this case the law must surely be on your side and any misconduct is theirs in over-reacting to what are really very discrete and innocent posts.

    Also, this link to add to your scrapbook…


    Comment by Susan — July 18, 2006 @ 5:34 pm

  121. PARIS, July 18, 2006 (AFP)

    Une secrétaire britannique, licenciée pour avoir tenu, sous le pseudonyme “La Petite Anglaise”, un blog racontant sa vie quotidienne à Paris, a saisi les prud’hommes.

    Catherine, employée par la société britannique de comptabilité Dixon Wilson, a tenu pendant deux ans un journal décrivant sa vie de mère célibataire à Paris, évoquant ses rencontres et son travail.

    Mais en avril, elle a été licenciée. Son site, visité par jusqu’à 3.000 internautes par jour, a reçu depuis de nombreux messages de sympathie.

    “Dans la lettre de licenciement, ils ont dit que j’avais nui à l’image de la société, mais je ne l’ai jamais citée, ni les noms des personnes avec qui je travaillais”, a-t-elle dit à l’AFP, même si elle évoque sur son blog son patron “très vieille école”, qui porte des bretelles.

    Parmi ses anecdotes, elle raconte aussi avoir, involontairement, laissé voir un décolleté plongeant lors d’une vidéo-conférence.

    Ses employeurs ont également découvert qu’à deux reprises elle avait invoqué des problèmes de garde d’enfants pour prendre l’après-midi et lui ont reproché d’avoir tenu son blog pendant ses heures de travail.

    Catherine, qui refuse de donner son nom de famille, estime que ces motifs ne justifient pas un licenciement.


    Comment by Chris — July 18, 2006 @ 5:37 pm


    Follow Dooce’s footsteps and make your blog into a “real job”

    Comment by delaïdo — July 18, 2006 @ 5:38 pm

  123. Bon courage la petite anglaise, il faut se battre.
    VOICI UN EXTRAIT D’UNE DEPECHE AFP parlant de ta situation

    Auteur d’un blog puis licenciée, “La petite Anglaise” se rebiffe
    AFP 18.07.06 | 17h06

    Agrandir la taille du texte
    Diminuer la taille du texte
    Imprimer cet article

    Une secrétaire britannique, licenciée pour avoir tenu, sous le pseudonyme “La Petite Anglaise”, un blog racontant sa vie quotidienne à Paris, a saisi les prud’hommes.

    Catherine, employée par la société britannique de comptabilité Dixon Wilson, a tenu pendant deux ans un journal décrivant sa vie de mère célibataire à Paris, évoquant ses rencontres et son travail.

    Mais en avril, elle a été licenciée. Son site, visité par jusqu’à 3.000 internautes par jour, a reçu depuis de nombreux messages de sympathie.

    “Dans la lettre de licenciement, ils ont dit que j’avais nui à l’image de la société, mais je ne l’ai jamais citée, ni les noms des personnes avec qui je travaillais”, a-t-elle dit à l’AFP, même si elle évoque sur son blog son patron “très vieille école”, qui porte des bretelles.

    Parmi ses anecdotes, elle raconte aussi avoir, involontairement, laissé voir un décolleté plongeant lors d’une vidéo-conférence.

    Ses employeurs ont également découvert qu’à deux reprises elle avait invoqué des problèmes de garde d’enfants pour prendre l’après-midi et lui ont reproché d’avoir tenu son blog pendant ses heures de travail.

    Catherine, qui refuse de donner son nom de famille, estime que ces motifs ne justifient pas un licenciement.

    Comment by Peckinpache — July 18, 2006 @ 5:44 pm

  124. Seems to me a warning would have been the appropriate response. You never identified your employer, so how in the world could the company be harmed by the — very innocuous — references in your blog. Now the idiots have outed themselves, thereby guaranteeing that people who haven’t already been reading your blog will rush to it and search out the job-related posts.

    I am sorry this happened right as you’re buying a flat. A zillion years ago, I was fired right after I signed the papers to buy my first house, so I know the nasty feeling in the pit of the stomach. You’re going to be okay, though. I’m certain of it.

    Comment by Passante — July 18, 2006 @ 5:48 pm

  125. Your boss thinks your blog was hurting the firm’s reputation? I suggest he quickly hires himself a good crisis management PR firm, because, he did more damage by himself than anyone else! He mis-evaluated the situation, over-reacted and didn’t foresee the possible consequences. I’ve been in PR all my life, and frankly, this is the kind of nightmare I don’t wish for anyone. And I know that by now, it is too late for him: he will fry…

    You, petite, on the other hand, are being handed a chance for a “second début”.

    Best wishes from Canada (the news does travel fast around this small planet!)

    Comment by Jacques — July 18, 2006 @ 5:52 pm

  126. Je trouve ce qui t’arrive scandaleux, ne te laisse pas faire, je suis de tout coeur avec toi !!
    Voici un “copier-coller” de la dépêche AFP d’aujourd’hui :
    Une secrétaire britannique, licenciée pour avoir tenu, sous le pseudonyme “La Petite Anglaise”, un blog racontant sa vie quotidienne à Paris, a saisi les prud’hommes.

    Catherine, employée par la société britannique de comptabilité Dixon Wilson, a tenu pendant deux ans un journal décrivant sa vie de mère célibataire à Paris, évoquant ses rencontres et son travail.

    Mais en avril, elle a été licenciée. Son site, visité par jusqu’à 3.000 internautes par jour, a reçu depuis de nombreux messages de sympathie.

    “Dans la lettre de licenciement, ils ont dit que j’avais nui à l’image de la société, mais je ne l’ai jamais citée, ni les noms des personnes avec qui je travaillais”, a-t-elle dit à l’AFP, même si elle évoque sur son blog son patron “très vieille école”, qui porte des bretelles.

    Parmi ses anecdotes, elle raconte aussi avoir, involontairement, laissé voir un décolleté plongeant lors d’une vidéo-conférence.

    Ses employeurs ont également découvert qu’à deux reprises elle avait invoqué des problèmes de garde d’enfants pour prendre l’après-midi et lui ont reproché d’avoir tenu son blog pendant ses heures de travail.

    Catherine, qui refuse de donner son nom de famille, estime que ces motifs ne justifient pas un licenciement.


    Comment by zaza84 — July 18, 2006 @ 6:02 pm

  127. If you do a news search on googgle or yahoo searching “petite anglaise” then loads of things are coming up. Here is the yahoo one. The google one is better. Reuters are also running it….

    Comment by Cheria — July 18, 2006 @ 6:15 pm

  128. Could you let me know where it is on the site I should click? News? Arts? Entertainment? I’m having a difficult time finding the interview. Who was the host?

    Comment by buzzgirl — July 18, 2006 @ 6:20 pm

  129. Congratulations! I do believe you have just crashed one of the BBC servers.

    Comment by meredic — July 18, 2006 @ 6:30 pm

  130. Well… I’m not used to commenting here, but This is some News.
    I’m sorry for you, wondering how this could happen. Yet I keep wondering how you managed to stick to “the safest anecdote” all that long…
    May your come back be grand !

    Comment by prixdeflore2006 — July 18, 2006 @ 6:33 pm

  131. (… and may the judges be wise !)

    Comment by prixdeflore2006 — July 18, 2006 @ 6:34 pm

  132. I have just listened to it – you was Ace

    *that is all I have to say*

    Comment by andre — July 18, 2006 @ 6:42 pm

  133. Heard you today on Radio 5.Didn’t know it was you until the pieces fell into place-but as a frequent (ie
    not enough) visitor to Paris, (I have my own “Tadpole” in the form of a French goddaughter), I read your blog instead of going to the Kensington branch of Paul when I get the wish-I-was-there-blues.Saves me a fortune.
    The good thing about the internet is that it allows us all to protest in some form without too much hard work. So thanks to the Telegraph the name of THAT COMPANY is out….and so (thanks to Google) is their E mail address…let the deluge begin.
    Good luck with the case….I’m sure you’ll soon be writing for the Times, or Standard or at the very least The (ugh) Daily Mail before the summer is out.


    Comment by Brian Minkoff — July 18, 2006 @ 6:50 pm

  134. All the best Petite, rooting for you!

    Comment by Maria — July 18, 2006 @ 6:56 pm

  135. Good luck, Petite.


    Comment by Cheerful One — July 18, 2006 @ 6:57 pm

  136. Good luck with your case. I can’t offer any advice except maybe you should turn your paypal link into a “support the legal rights of bloggers link.”

    My thoughts are with you.

    Comment by chantel — July 18, 2006 @ 6:59 pm

  137. Good luck with all this Petite. I have no doubt you will prevail, I have read through your archives and I can’t think of a single thing your former employers could possibly have on you. You were always very careful about remaining anonymous. This is a frustrating turn of events but has the potential to bring about some good things. Your fans numbering in the thousands are rooting for you!

    Comment by la page française — July 18, 2006 @ 7:00 pm

  138. Would they have fired you if only one or two people read your site? I doubt it.

    Gross conduct is absurd. They are merely demonstrating themselves to be complete Luddites and stuck in bygone era.

    You will win. Good luck, Petite, I think you are very brave.

    Comment by Léonie — July 18, 2006 @ 7:01 pm

  139. I read the article in the Telegraph and I thought that can’t be the blog I read but it was you there in my favourites. Hey don’t worry I’m sure things will be sorted out, look at all this support you have – all these comments will give you a boost when you need it. Good luck.

    Comment by Teresa — July 18, 2006 @ 7:05 pm

  140. I am mortified and outraged! I don’t know enough about French employement law, but in England they would be on very shaky ground.

    Good luck my dear.

    Comment by TheBoy — July 18, 2006 @ 7:05 pm

  141. Your dismissalhas reached the Sydney Morning Herald,today 19/7/06 !
    I wish you every success with your case.

    Comment by john lenihan — July 18, 2006 @ 7:05 pm

  142. Ach!! What was it about the blog that was wrong?

    My favorite part of the article was- “The partner for whom Catherine worked said the firm was unlikely to feel able to comment.”

    Unlikely to feel able to comment? That’s priceless.

    Comment by Nicole — July 18, 2006 @ 7:09 pm

  143. good luck in court and keep writing!

    Comment by mindy — July 18, 2006 @ 7:14 pm

  144. Not that it serves any practical purpose, but you clearly have a lot of support, Petite! Perhaps you can make a note above your donate button that indicates the need for assistance with legal fees.

    I hope this turns out well for you. It sounds as though your actions are certainly defensible from a legal standpoint and have simply offended the wrong people. Your writing is always top-notch, perhaps this fiasco will lead to a lovely book deal. ;)

    Comment by Kimberly — July 18, 2006 @ 7:14 pm

  145. Sorry to hear about you loosing your job. Hoping that everything works out and good luck in fighting this.

    Comment by Diane — July 18, 2006 @ 7:18 pm

  146. Googling you in the news section brought up an article in the International Edition of the Middle East Times. I’m going to send the link to NPR in the states–this is the sort of thing they would love.

    Probably smart of you to move now too, to keep the nosy reporters away.

    Comment by Leslie — July 18, 2006 @ 7:29 pm

  147. To be fired for “faute grave” is the new trend as companies pay the minimum… and you will have to go to court to get what they owe you…I hope you have a good lawyer and time.
    Now as a personal experience I think a bad can be a good… a kinda salvatory kick in the a** technique for another interesting step in one’s life.
    Take care.

    Comment by loran — July 18, 2006 @ 7:32 pm

  148. Good luck with the book – there’s got to be one there.

    Comment by Jane — July 18, 2006 @ 7:32 pm

  149. news just broke on Sky so I checked your site out.
    Bonne Chance madame

    to the cleaners, at speed…..

    Comment by eoin — July 18, 2006 @ 7:32 pm

  150. That’s terrible.

    That’s just so bad.

    What are you going to do ?

    P’tite anglaise defense fund ?

    You’re on AFP at 17.22pm :

    PARIS, Juillet 18, 2006 (AFP)
    Une secrétaire britannique, licenciée pour avoir tenu, sous le pseudonyme “La Petite Anglaise”, un blog racontant sa vie quotidienne à Paris, a saisi les prud’hommes….

    Comment by Damiel — July 18, 2006 @ 7:33 pm

  151. PS

    How does the –

    “….Most Friday nights you’ll find us in the bar downstairs and if we’re not there it’ll be because we’re unwinding in another of the city’s bars whether in Odéon, Bastille or the Marais” –

    glimpse of [company] life from one of THEIR student interns on THEIR website differ from your innocent (and anonymous) comments in the “Bringing the company into disrepute” stakes ????????????


    Comment by Brian — July 18, 2006 @ 7:34 pm

  152. Nothing more to say, just wanted to add another voice to those supporting you.

    Comment by Fred/Lanquarem — July 18, 2006 @ 7:35 pm

  153. Well, the world may have discovered you’re Catherine, but to me and your faithful readers you’ll always be Petite. I’m actually a bit disappointed to discover your real name! I’ve been reading you for over a year now and never have I detected hints of who you, Tadpole or the company you’ve been dooced from really are. Absolutely awful for you but perhaps a few years down the line we’ll have ‘petite anglaisé’ in the dictionnary meaning to be sacked due to blog writing, take the company concerned to court and win. All the best and please let this mean that you don’t stop writing.

    Comment by Loopy — July 18, 2006 @ 7:54 pm

  154. Free the Paris One!

    I’m sure you’ll be just fine whatever the outcome.

    Hopefully you’ll come out the other end a professional writer, if that’s what you want.

    I believe the Telegraph is very popular. Part of me would like to think it’s in the bag already.

    Comment by Tim — July 18, 2006 @ 8:07 pm

  155. Just googled their website to find Brian’s quote from it. Now they really do look like fools.

    All good things come to those who wait. You have waited and I think, as it seems to many of your commenters too, this will definitely end up being a good thing. The more I think about it, the more I think this is true.

    Comment by redlady — July 18, 2006 @ 8:08 pm

  156. Another rare poster (but daily reader) here, just to add my comment that I am so sorry this happened to you. I have been there, done that and I know how destructive the pettiness of their actions can be, if you let it.

    Bl**dy well done for rising above the nonsense and taking the action you have.

    BTW it was the best thing that could have happened to me, I hope that you will one day say the same of this experience.


    Comment by frogthistle — July 18, 2006 @ 8:21 pm

  157. I meant to write this earlier…

    PA: The link that you provided opens a window that starts playing at 19:00:00 of 21:56:59. It doesn’t allow the possibility of starting the audio at 03:39:30 What gives?

    Also, to whomever it was that stated that it was detrimental for PA to go public to the press in regard to this matter, I’m pretty sure you’re alone in perceiving her as “money-grubbing”, etc because she went to the press.

    It is important to get the general public on your side…particularly in a case that sets a precedent (even more so if it’s a ruling that will be determined by judges and not by jury).

    PA’s case is EXTREMELY important, believe it or not. Particularly since it can potentially set a precedent in French law. She’d be out of her mind to not answer to the press. DUH.

    Comment by Dina — July 18, 2006 @ 8:23 pm

  158. I wish you all the luck Petite!
    [What’s the French word for “dooced”? Maybe you could make one up …]

    Comment by pb — July 18, 2006 @ 8:28 pm

  159. Moments like these are a real wake-up call to us bloggers, I think – I always find it a strange thing to be doing, and though getting fired is probably one of the worst, it’s not the only potential consequence of having an “anonymous” blog that always ends up including details of your life that you probably wouldn’t just hand over to anyone you met.

    Very scary biscuits. Good luck.

    Comment by The B — July 18, 2006 @ 8:31 pm

  160. ‘Sfunny about the name, I knew from a previous post there was a ‘-th’ in there somewhere, but had you pegged as a Beth.

    Buzzgirl: if you’re still trying to listen to the Radio Five Live thing, click on the blonde woman’s head to the left of the screen, then go to ‘Tuesday’, and fast forward to the time Petite indicates, and you’ll be able to hear all about it! Err, at least, I THINK that’s what I just did…

    Comment by Grande Anglaise — July 18, 2006 @ 8:37 pm

  161. Very sad and so unfair. I hate this feeling of injustice. It happens too frequently. As a matter of fact, I know myself very well that what you write on your website can have some strange and negative consequences on your life. Courage. You’re so much better than the people who fired you. Thousands of us read your blog regularly, and appreciate your very special way of writing about your life. You have an incredible talent, and you have a bright future. In case you don’t know it, your stories have touched me and probably others, sometimes very deeply. Write a book and I will buy ten of them. Best wishes from Boston.

    Comment by Guillermito — July 18, 2006 @ 8:39 pm

  162. wow, kicking off! get writing and get an agent!

    big hug


    Comment by mimi — July 18, 2006 @ 8:39 pm

  163. Which show on 5Live? I haven’t found it yet :-(

    Comment by Susan — July 18, 2006 @ 8:43 pm

  164. To be fair… And I’m sure I’ll get jumped on for this, but it’s not a personal slight against Ms. Anglaise because I read and enjoy her blog. BUT I think the really big issue here is that bloggers write on company time and companies do legitimately have a claim against that. I did it myself, but luckily I worked for a tiny company where it wasn’t an issue nor did I get caught. (But I wasn’t famous, either, and… that’s another price of fame, isn’t it?)

    I don’t think it’s at all right for them to claim that she did something to affect their reputation, as all was completely anonymous. Hell, I mean… plenty of us bitch and moan and “disrepute” our employers during Happy Hour. I think you could fight that and win. But the sticking point (and probably the employer’s winning point), is the “company time” issue. And now that they’ve been through your blog, they have a nicely logged bit of evidence, with a time stamp, showing exactly how much company time you’ve used, and if I remember correctly… a couple of jokes about doing this on company time, too, right? (I don’t mean that at all to be a slight against you, I’m just commenting on the pitfalls.)

    In any case, from what I’ve seen, most people who’ve lost their jobs due to their blog have gone on to do much bigger and better things. This will certainly propel your “fame” and give you much bigger & better opportunities in the near future!

    In the meantime, I think it’s very much a responsibility of employers to outline their stance on this blogging thing. Not to say that they have a right to say “don’t blog” or anything like that. Just that this is becoming a common situation and the rules, for both sides, are undefined and foggy… something needs to be done, particularly to protect the rights of bloggers who “follow the rules” (ie, don’t denounce their employer publicly, blog on their own time, give away company secrets, etc.)

    Comment by Nikki — July 18, 2006 @ 8:46 pm

  165. Bon courage ! Tous mes voeux pour les Prud’homme !

    Comment by François Granger — July 18, 2006 @ 8:55 pm

  166. How do I locate your broadcast on Radio Five’s website? That link gets me to the website but I don’t see the program listed by time of broadcast, and since I live in the U.S. I’m not familiar with the different programs and don’t know which one you might have been on.

    Comment by The Bold Soul — July 18, 2006 @ 9:05 pm

  167. Um. It’s all been said here. I’m in shock. Can only imagine how you felt. And of course it causes me to quake in my boots a bit as well! Good luck. We’ll be reading.

    Comment by ellie — July 18, 2006 @ 9:16 pm

  168. I wasn’t expecting that. :| But I’m sure, as you deserve, it turned out to be the best thing for you.

    Comment by MAD — July 18, 2006 @ 9:25 pm

  169. Hi Petite
    I Posted earlier and am yet again impressed and amazed by the power of the web. Your previous employers have done themselves nothing but harm by their actions, and you have emerged covered only by common sense. You are such an obviously intelligent person that people like me naturally follow you (and tadpole of course!).
    Stay strong and good luck

    Comment by Andy — July 18, 2006 @ 9:34 pm

  170. I didn’t want to say anything as you told me ages ago.
    You’ll be fine darlin’. xx I’ve complete faith in you.

    Comment by fjl — July 18, 2006 @ 9:38 pm

  171. Dear Petite,
    Sad to read about your misfortune. Know that many readers and fellow bloggers are behind you. I wonder wether your firm has ever realised what they were getting into. From reading your blog, nobody knew who they are. Now, from firing you, everybody does. And this is not very good publicity. Do their clients know they are letting go some of their staff just for being intelligent, well spoken, witty and frank? For, in short, not being another stuffed shirt?

    Bon courage!

    Comment by Krek. — July 18, 2006 @ 9:39 pm

  172. Your news is really getting global (I’m from The Netherlands) hope you can manage the distress so far.

    I am not into legal disputes, but since you did not mention your (former?) employers business name your manager did not need to fire you on site, ah well that’s a struggle to be settled in court I guess.

    I wish you well and to give you a chin’s up; your employer was worried the company name would come out… I guess it did now by their own doing ;-) hope you might have a good laugh on that one.


    Comment by Maarten — July 18, 2006 @ 9:51 pm

  173. Chère petite anglaise,

    Bonne chance avec cette action. J’espère que la loi française te supportera comme elle le devrait.

    Après tout, ton blog est charmant, tu y parles de tes amours ce qui ne peut que faire plaisir aux français romantiques, et la compagnie pour qui tu travaillais est anglaise, donc pas d’hésitation, il faudra punir la perfide Albion et défendre la jolie Catherine contre elle!

    Bonne chance donc, et bon courage.


    Comment by John — July 18, 2006 @ 9:51 pm

  174. I would offer condolences, Petite, were it not for the FACT that,in tossing a low earning single mother who has done no wrong out onto the streets,your former employers have proven themselves,in the eyes of the entire world, no less,a bunch of {deleted} straight out of a Dickens story!

    What arrogance and ignorance to think that a photo of you (of which there have been, until recently, a very few and strictly in non-work related posts)could ever be enough for anyone to discern your place of employment!!

    I offer instead CONGRATULATIONS for having the intelligence, courage, determination and perseverence to expose the injustice that is being foisted upon your good name!!

    You are setting the right example for Tadpole,
    who is growing up in a world (and especially a country) that has decades to go before women
    workers are fully respected.

    Courage,Petite,for while this may seem to be a success de scandale,it is really your life moving forward to what it is meant to be:independent,happy and succesful…

    Many Blessings!!

    Comment by Belle — July 18, 2006 @ 9:52 pm

  175. They are fools! So glad i work for their rivals (not saying who given subject of your post!) Wishing you all the best, and you’ll get even more if the court has any sense. you look absolutely stunning in that photo!

    Comment by Ellie — July 18, 2006 @ 9:53 pm

  176. Delurking to show support.

    I never considered your blog about your work. You rarely mention it so what is the deal about this?

    Do let the blog community know what we can do to support you. I read you daily when you post.


    Comment by Maxly — July 18, 2006 @ 10:03 pm

  177. Ce qui vous arrive est véritablement scandaleux. C’est la liberté d’expression qu’on attaque. Vous avez tout notre soutien. Bon courage.

    Comment by Christophe Grébert — July 18, 2006 @ 10:06 pm

  178. OHmygosh… might as well fire everyone who READS your blog at work too… geez, I’m in there. I’m rooting for you ! It’s great that their “solid” name is now all over the press….

    I also liked “unlikely to feel able to comment”. Sounds like someone stuck in a toilet.

    Comment by magillicuddy — July 18, 2006 @ 10:09 pm

  179. You don’t need them. Stuff ’em, sue ’em and move on to better things. Bon chance.

    Comment by Wobbly Virtue — July 18, 2006 @ 10:09 pm

  180. Glad you are suing. Hope you succeed. All the best. Flew into your blog from Kingston Girl’s.

    Comment by revolution island — July 18, 2006 @ 10:16 pm

  181. Good luck, and keep blogging. You are a huge inspiration to many with your eloquent words.

    Comment by BlondebutBright — July 18, 2006 @ 10:36 pm

  182. Apologetically, I’m fresh out of witty or awe-inspiring words. So, the following will have to do:

    You Go Girl!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Comment by Magoogirl — July 18, 2006 @ 10:38 pm

  183. Petite, this is part of a story you will one day thank your stars for I am sure. All press is good press as they say and this can only boost your blog’s audience, your Google adsense clicks and your notoriety (in a good way). We’re all with you all the way and I for one am totally shocked that your ex-company think they have enough amunition even for the bus fare to the court let alone a financing a case.

    Please oh please could someone tell me how to listen to the five live broadcast? I’ve downloaded real player and I can hear the radio but I can’t find the programme. Thanks!

    Comment by Paris Lights — July 18, 2006 @ 10:56 pm

  184. Hi,

    Saw your interview on More4 News and was really shocked. I’ve been reading Petite anglaise all year and always thought you were very good about leaving out things eg. I had no idea who you worked for or even what industry.

    By the way the interview was good.

    Good luck.

    Comment by Melissa — July 18, 2006 @ 11:01 pm

  185. This news item showed up on a Dutch site.

    Comment by Marcel — July 18, 2006 @ 11:04 pm

  186. Ooh. I like this picture best of all. The other ones made me look old.

    Comment by petite — July 18, 2006 @ 11:47 pm

  187. Good luck.

    I strongly believe that this big bang in your life will be greatly fruitful in the end.

    Comment by Marie-Hélène — July 18, 2006 @ 11:51 pm

  188. Life’s too short and we’ve got too many other things to do than work for money-grabbers who don’t respect the work that’s done. I speak from experience. I would personally relish getting fired as I could then receive unemployment benefit and set up as a freelance translator without having to pay tax for a year…but I don’t have a blog. Mind you, I’ve already given away more info about my employer in this comment than you, Petite, in 2 years of blog posts. It was meant to be! You’re too good at what you do best to waste your time working for a money-obsessed company and a boss that would most likely sell his dear old mum for glue. It’s all for the good.

    Comment by Lucy-Jane — July 18, 2006 @ 11:57 pm

  189. ALL of the pictures are lovely, Petite!!! Go get ’em.

    Comment by Kat — July 19, 2006 @ 12:03 am

  190. every picture i’ve seen of you has been absolutely lovely. and they’re fools to let you go. and i have a feeling you’ll come out on top.

    cheers, petite

    Comment by brandon — July 19, 2006 @ 12:04 am

  191. Just struck me – your thank-all-gods EX employers are astonishingly French…

    Hey, you’ll pass the 200 comments mark before the morning!


    Comment by Lucy-Jane — July 19, 2006 @ 12:06 am

  192. Hey, aren’t you pretty! Saw your photo in the Telegraph. Bet half your firm’s clients will follow you wherever you go.
    Que tengas muy buena suerte Señorita,

    Comment by tim c — July 19, 2006 @ 12:08 am

  193. Like many other of your regular readers, I’m sorry to hear you got sacked and the subsequent stress it must have caused you, although I suspect there will be a silver, or more likely ‘golden with diamond studs’ lining to all this – in the vein of Dooce and other bloggers whose online existence has opened up whole new lives for them. As for your employers … words fail me. Ok, so one can hardly expect an accountancy firm to be in tune with the technological zeitgeist … but there have been enough stories in the mainstream media about how quickly word travels via various internet based channels to realise that such an over-reaction in relation to a person with such a loyal and broad on-line readership just might back-fire on them.

    Comment by Nikki — July 19, 2006 @ 12:16 am

  194. I’ve added a little “press” link to the sidebar, you can see/hear/read everything I have been informed of so far…

    Blimey. 10,000 visitors today. Many due to the gallant eolas who is gallantly taking up my cause. Amazing.

    Comment by petite — July 19, 2006 @ 12:30 am

  195. that sucks! I am an American living in Paris and also writing a blog! Your company should have to fire everyone that writes personal emails and phone calls at work too!!

    Behind you mama!!!

    Comment by Anon — July 19, 2006 @ 12:30 am

  196. Sorry (and outraged) to read what has happened to you. It is my worse fear, though I seldom write about my work. I don’t even write under my real name, I’m so paranoid, and now I see why.

    It’s not like you gave away company secrets to competitors or embezzled money from your firm.

    Good luck to you and Tadpole, and I hope you find a better job than this one. I hope you will continue writing too.

    As we say over here, “Don’t let the turkeys get you down!”

    Hang in there,

    LH in Florida

    Comment by Lady Heather — July 19, 2006 @ 12:35 am

  197. Oh! And I forgot to say: good luck on your lawsuit!
    The tremendous amount of support you’re rightfully getting is also being talked about in Portugal.
    What were they thinking anyway?

    Comment by MAD — July 19, 2006 @ 12:36 am

  198. The only thing that worries me abit is the part about the two afternoons you told a porky about not having a nanny to get a freebie half day. Still which one of us hasn’t done that, in the name of heaven? Even if you don’t get the court case, you’re making a strong successful point about bastard employers, hooray for you girl xxx

    Comment by fjl — July 19, 2006 @ 12:41 am

  199. I am sorry you are going through this right now, but honestly Petite-you rock! I think it’s great you are standing up for yourself and have no doubt bigger and better things are just around the corner for you. I love your blog and look forward to reading it every day.You are true to yourself in all aspects of your life and I find that inspiring and refreshing.
    Go get ’em Petite.

    Comment by Jen — July 19, 2006 @ 12:44 am

  200. Hey David in London, you’ve got your millisecond of fame too — your reward for reading the Telegraph — here. (hope that worked and made a hotlink, otherwise I will look really stupid).

    Comment by Passante — July 19, 2006 @ 12:45 am

  201. Hey- and what are your ex-employers doing skiving off work in order to read your blog enough to find out these details anyhow?….

    Give that to your lawyers x

    Comment by fjl — July 19, 2006 @ 12:52 am

  202. Don’t you think you’re a bit of an exhibitionist?

    How do you think Tadpole will feel when she realizes her early life was followed like some cheap soap by thousands of curious web-users?

    Comment by Hoboken — July 19, 2006 @ 12:57 am

  203. Oh keeping that bottled up (well, not blogging about it) for all this time! I’m another long term reader unlurking to wish you the best of luck in getting this sorted out. I really hope everything pans out for you.

    Comment by Ruth — July 19, 2006 @ 1:04 am

  204. man, but that daily mail article is crap. for what it’s worth. as rob brydon said in 24 hour party people: “provocatively poor. appallingly poor.”

    this is gathering momentum at an astonishing speed. good luck!

    Comment by sydneysnider — July 19, 2006 @ 1:44 am

  205. Checked out your press links from the sidebar. Okay the loathesome Daily Mail gave your surname, thereby showing that “journalistic integrity” is an oxymoron in their world, but your surname was bound to come out sooner or later. I sympathise, but am not surprised, that they badgered your parents.

    But here’s what makes me really pleased about their reporting:

    [The firm] is apparently particularly angry about the continual references to her immediate boss. He was said to be ‘incandescent with rage’ at what she had written about him.

    “Continual” references? Guess I missed those. And “incandescent with rage”? Heavens, if mentions that he wears socks with suspenders and has a plummy Oxbridge accent bend him out of shape to that extent, he just makes himself look like a self-obsessed, insecure, spoilt, whining crybaby——as I am sure your lawyer will point out (more judiciously, of course).

    Sweetie, I think you’re going to come out way ahead on this one.

    Comment by Passante — July 19, 2006 @ 1:53 am

  206. and here I was feeling so smug that I asked Antipodesse your real name when I met her on Saturday, and now the WHOLE WORLD knows it!

    Bonne chance Catherine!!!

    Comment by the_editter — July 19, 2006 @ 1:53 am

  207. Congratulations m’dear – Talk about making a splash!! Not that you need it but I hope you feel reassured by the fact that we’re all rooting for you. Now onwards and upwards to part 2 of the plan – mwah! (I am printing up some “I knew PA before she was quite as famous as she is now” t-shirts in a shameless bid to cash in. I have also offered some pics of you gurning in a tiara to the News of the World – a boy’s gotta make a living.)

    Comment by rhino75 — July 19, 2006 @ 2:06 am

  208. I came across your latest developments through Blogher. I’m really sorry to hear about it and as a pretty regular reader of your blog I don’t think you deserved to be sacked for it.

    You’re a good writer, and with all this publicity, I’m sure something positive will come out of it.

    Comment by jen — July 19, 2006 @ 2:10 am

  209. Read about you in our on line uk telegraph, I am in Australia.

    Go get the stuffed shirts and keep us informed.

    Very best wishes to you from down under!

    Comment by eleanor — July 19, 2006 @ 2:32 am

  210. Allo! I am sorry to hear of your termination. I too write about my job on my blog. I’m not as careful about concealing my identity as you are, cherie. I am not intimidated at all by what has happened to you. I will continue to disparage my employer as long as I slave away in its workhouse! Love live Solidarity! Long live La Petite Anglaise!

    Comment by Ryan — July 19, 2006 @ 3:07 am

  211. Keep blogging. I have a blog about dating and being a single mom in America. Love your blog.

    Comment by Nicole Fisher — July 19, 2006 @ 3:32 am

  212. Greetings from the Philippines! I read about your blog from the International Herald Tribune and it truly saddened me that you have to go through this just for blogging!

    I am a blogger myself and I think it’s a great thing to be able to write down one’s thoughts, but I think your company went way overboard (read: overreacted). I send you my prayers and hope that you’d be able to weather this one soon enough.

    Huge hugs to Tadpole and Noddy!

    Comment by Dylan — July 19, 2006 @ 3:39 am

  213. Wow over 200 comments on this one post alone. And now this one from all across the world – I write from Malaysia!

    Hence, whilst I understand the sentiments of your boss,I agree with this comment made earlier:-

    “Your boss thinks your blog was hurting the firm’s reputation? I suggest he quickly hires himself a good crisis management PR firm, because, he did more damage by himself than anyone else! He mis-evaluated the situation, over-reacted and didn’t foresee the possible consequences. This is bad management, plain and simple.”

    Consider offering yourself as a columnist to a paper. You would do well.

    Comment by The Hinge — July 19, 2006 @ 3:49 am

  214. Sincerely sorry that you lost a job. But a couple of points:

    (1) As much as I regret to say, I think the firm does have a very good legal case. You do have to be so careful with publishing these days, and it’s a mistake to think that blogging, because it is so easy, is any different. (Given that it doesn’t involve editors, it’s more legally precarious too.)

    I have often thought about blogging about my University colleagues. Lord knows, the truth is far stranger than fiction or David Lodge would otherwise see it. But the legal perils of identification are too tricky. It only takes one photo, and it’s a long way down hill. I’ve always thought that photos of you, and certainly of Tadpole, although you say you want to protect her, is somewhat ill-advised.

    (2) I would strongly advise you to do no more media stuff until the case is over. You’re really jeopardising the case with publicity. I’d like to say things about someone from the Telegraph, but will restrain myself.

    I hope it goes well – even though you already look pretty happy in the photo shots… ;)

    Comment by Dr Analyst — July 19, 2006 @ 4:23 am

  215. Thinking of you, Petite, et tiens bon courage!

    Comment by Sophie — July 19, 2006 @ 5:17 am

  216. You’ve many loyal readers behind you, and I am one of them. We all know you are a very strong woman. Stay brave.

    Comment by Ursula — July 19, 2006 @ 5:23 am

  217. An article has shown up here in New Zealand today

    Comment by Maree — July 19, 2006 @ 5:28 am

  218. Two questions for you Petite:

    – did you decide to sue? I imagine it must have been a difficult decision (whether you decided to fight or not), given the consequences in both cases.

    – Did you read
    Eolas’ article, and especially comment number 10 there?

    Comment by Blaise — July 19, 2006 @ 6:13 am

  219. Hi, I read about your predicament (all the way from Australia). Good luck with your fight. I love your name for your daughter. I call my son Captain Booger Features on my blog :)

    Comment by Clare — July 19, 2006 @ 6:42 am

  220. That really, really sucks. Good luck with the fallout.

    Comment by sprite — July 19, 2006 @ 7:44 am

  221. How about a boycott of your former employers. There are enough bloggers to spread the word. Do they not realize the power of word of mouth, or in this case, word of blog? We should all be able to put a serious crimp in their bottom line.
    It is time we say enough! We have the right to express ourselves anonymously without fear of getting sacked.

    Let us know how we can help.

    Comment by Mad William — July 19, 2006 @ 7:52 am

  222. Petite,

    I just read of your recent termination by the crazy boss! I read of your situation with great interest because I suffered a similar fate not too long ago. I also recently wrote an article about “CrazyBosses” and would like to know what you think about my article. I occasionally write articles for the Corporate-Alien blog, and my article “CrazyBosses” appeared last week. I would greatly appreciate any feedback you could provide about my article, and whether you think it accurately portrays the type of tyrant you worked for.

    Again, I’m sorry for your bad experience with the “tyrant boss”, and hope you don’t suffer the same experience again.

    Hang in there! We are with you! Down with crazy tyrant bosses!

    Comment by Bob Lim — July 19, 2006 @ 8:00 am

  223. Petite, you’re news down here in Australia as well… My word what a state of affairs huh?

    All the Best, I hope you sock it to them.

    And as so often happens, all will work out in the end no doubt… we’ll be here in any case, and if you need to escape to Australia we’ll hide you…

    Comment by deeleea — July 19, 2006 @ 8:06 am

  224. Yes, I must moderate everything too… But you’ve made headlines in Australia and I admire you for your courage. Keep up the good work and don’t give the bastards an inch. Four workmates and myself were ‘made redundant’ because we no longer fit the ‘youthful ethos’ of the company.

    I won… ;-)


    Comment by Alex — July 19, 2006 @ 8:18 am

  225. Sorry to hear this. It’s really unfair of them. I hope you get your settlement and who knows, maybe this is the begining of something new and good.

    Comment by Young Crazy Fool — July 19, 2006 @ 8:43 am

  226. Here is a crazy cat video to cheer you up! It’s a British shorthair lol

    Comment by Tim J — July 19, 2006 @ 8:49 am

  227. This morning’s Times:,,13509-2276351,00.html

    Comment by Claire — July 19, 2006 @ 9:12 am

  228. You do realise now that your readership will be divided into those who read before you were famous and those who came after the media interest? And the long time readers will smugly be saying “Petite Anglaise? I was reading her long before she sold out and got a multi-million pond book deal. Anyone who read after that is just jumping on the bandwagon.”
    I suspect that you will very soon have a posh 250 m² pad in the posh 16th arrondissement with all the cash you’ll be making. And lots of painters etc to do the decorating for you.
    Everything’s been said. Good luck with the rest. :-)

    Comment by suziboo — July 19, 2006 @ 9:18 am

  229. I meant of course, multi million pound book deal. Although should you want a lot of ponds that’s your affair.

    Comment by suziboo — July 19, 2006 @ 9:23 am

  230. Gee, what a shocker, fired for using company time and material to write about what stuffed shirts they are and your life as a single mom out prowling for “romance” and cocktails & believing a thin veil of anonymity could justify it.

    If only this had happened to somebody else previously, so you might have had a hint at how it might turn out.

    Enjoy your 15 minutes.

    Comment by clarisse — July 19, 2006 @ 9:55 am

  231. As a long time reader and fellow blogger who often worries she might be sailing close to the wind, I wish you the best of luck. Your former employers are obviously a bunch of stuffy old farts who are entirely lacking in the humour dept.


    Comment by orchidea — July 19, 2006 @ 10:15 am

  232. Passante: HA! Thanks for pointing that out to me. It’s put a smile on the old visage!! May I just point out though, for the sake of posterity, that I am NOT a Telegraph reader normally. The guy sat next to me on the train yesterday was simply kind enough to leave his paper on the seat when he got off the train. It would have been rude not to have a look, wouldn’t it? No, me, I much prefer the Times, which incidentally adds another little aspect to what is already turning out to be quite a surreal couple of days; the reporter who did the Times version of Petite’s story was David Rose, a.k.a. my name!!

    Comment by David In London — July 19, 2006 @ 10:22 am

  233. I dont think I really like knowing what your name was! I liked the game of guessing it! I would never had guessed Catherine I dont know why! Please dont reveal tadpoles names that would be all my fun in the working day gone?!

    Comment by Kirsty — July 19, 2006 @ 10:41 am

  234. Wow, Petite, you’re getting offers for a book version in *French* … have you accepted yet? Will you translate it yourself?

    Comment by O. — July 19, 2006 @ 10:50 am

  235. Dear Petite, I wish you courage dear virtual friend. Fight hard for your rights, ‘cos it sure seems they have been violated.

    Comment by Pixie — July 19, 2006 @ 11:07 am

  236. Hi Petite,

    I’ve also read about your case in Australia. Very ironic timing because I’m just reading Scoble & Israel’s “Naked Conversations” where they state “to date, there have been fewer than 100 incidents reported of employee blogs resulting in disciplinary action or severance …”. Welcome to an exclusive club, I guess!

    From what I can see I certainly wouldn’t have thought that your blog was on a destructive collision course with your employer’s firm. What an over-reaction. It also shows you how important (corporate) culture is in regards to the tolerance of free speech and open communication.

    Good luck with your battle … it might also be a good idea to put lots of Google AdSense ads on your blog. Hopefully, you could at least make some money from the increased traffic your blog is undoubtedly getting now! :)

    Comment by Nancy — July 19, 2006 @ 11:10 am

  237. Another long-term reader de-lurking to offer support. I simply can’t imagine how your ex-boss can claim you identified the firm. In fact my guess was that you worked for the Paris office of a London law firm (recognised the stuffy atmosphere from a previous career incarnation!) – I never remember picking up any hint that it was an accountancy practice. Your ex-boss must be extraordinarily paranoid and have a bizarrely inflated view of his own importance, I mean, who was interested (until now, that is…). Best of luck with the legal stuff – you’re going to be fine. Here’s to an exciting future for Petite Anglaise!

    Comment by Cornelia — July 19, 2006 @ 11:12 am

  238. Petite,
    There’s nothing THEY can do that won’t make you stronger and weaken themselves in the eyes of the world. Good luck. x

    Comment by Harry Greiner — July 19, 2006 @ 11:15 am

  239. Petite, I’ve been at work all day today (in fields, very glamourous and completely newspaper/internet free) and just had the chance to hop on the internet for the first time in a couple of days and take a look at one of my favourite bloggers whose ups and downs I have been avidly following for the past year or so – yes of course you! – and have been completely bowled over to read what has happened. All I can really say is go get them! I’m sure that they don’t have a leg to stand on and that they get what they deserve. I think it’s fair to say judging by the comments that you have public support behind you! Good luck and I really do hope that things turn out well for you – I’ll be reading to find out.

    p.s Happy (belated) birthday to Noddy

    p.p.s It’s a bit strange to know your real name, I think I’ll just go on thinking of you as petite, if that’s ok?

    Comment by Ellie — July 19, 2006 @ 11:17 am

  240. Petite,

    I came across your blog about a month ago while attempting a googlewhack while bored at work (argh!!)

    I’ve been lurking around, absolutely fascinated by your world and the love everyone has for you.

    When I read about happened I felt sick for you. Other than break-ups or the death of a loved one I reckon losing your job is right up there with crappest things that can happen.

    However if how everyone feels about you and your blog is any indication to go by….this is gonna be just another scary, exciting and ultimately fulfilling phase in your life – and I can’t wait to read about it!

    Revel (or wallow!)in all your moments, even the bad ones – it makes life life :)

    PS: I didn’t want to say anything cliched or trite, i wanted to come across as cool and worldly- lol – i think i failed – i mean how worldly can you be when you are from the most isolated city in the world?

    Comment by Lil Bee — July 19, 2006 @ 11:22 am

  241. So well done…
    You will get some money and new contacts and tempoary fame.

    That is great you are on the housing ladder with some equity…..all hail to consumerism.

    Private use of the internet at work will probably become a automatic sackable offence.

    Law students will love it..lets all wind up our employers playing on the computer and then sue them. Very American.
    Life is not all fun and games.

    Thanks a bundle !!

    Comment by nick — July 19, 2006 @ 11:32 am

  242. Petite!!!
    I read your blog from Uganda,bet you donno where it is found but its located in Africa.i love the way you write and boy wasnt i in a mood yesterday.I had to write about it on my blog aswel.
    butgo get them gal!!!
    our fingers are crossed for you!!!
    al the best

    Comment by becky — July 19, 2006 @ 11:34 am

  243. I am very angry about the words they used to fire you. You do nothing but champion me and Jake and vulnerable families like us. If there is ‘gross misconduct’ in that then society is upside down.
    I hope that cretinous hooray gets his due, I really do. Let us Not feel sorry for him. :-)

    Comment by fjl — July 19, 2006 @ 11:41 am

  244. Good lord, that’s the last thing I was expecting. And look at all those comments! But I agree with the others, some thing better will turn up, hopefully in the form of a book deal thanks to all the publicity.

    Comment by samantha — July 19, 2006 @ 11:47 am

  245. Wow, so many comments. Go Petite…

    Comment by Timorous Beastie — July 19, 2006 @ 11:47 am

  246. Unbelievable! I’ve been trying to get the sack for over a year and they won’t do it! I write blogs, design websites, all nothing to do with my job, and they won’t sack me.
    Bloody French. Good luck with the prud’homme! I have friends who live very nicely thanks to them ;)

    Comment by Gareth — July 19, 2006 @ 11:47 am

  247. Bon courage !!!

    Comment by Carole — July 19, 2006 @ 11:53 am

  248. Someting good will come out of this. Just keep your head together and don’t get carried away.

    Good luck!

    Comment by Roderick — July 19, 2006 @ 11:54 am

  249. I found this blog on a news site called The Inquirer (I’m sorry if that has just shown up as code – I don’t know if it will accept HTML). I’m really sorry about what you’re going through. After reading some of your blog entries, you seem such a kind and loving person and although I can understand things can strain around kids, but you seem to be great with Tadpole too (Granted you’ll be having another birthday party for Noddy next year!). I can’t believe that this has happened to such a great person as yourself. I just want to give you a great big hug and tell you that everything will be alright!


    Comment by RattyocasteR — July 19, 2006 @ 11:55 am

  250. Read some of your blog wonderful stuff good for you!! You go get em!! I am in Bahrain so this is truely reaching the world. Am going to start reading your blog regulary glad the Daily Mail printed your name I will be waiting for your book!! =)

    Comment by Kate — July 19, 2006 @ 11:55 am

  251. Keep going on with your blog Girl
    everything is alright on it and if there is a justice in our world you will win against your last boss who fired you
    Some case of Lawsuit have already happened in France on blog’s subject and everytime the blogger wins against the plaintiff because liberty of expression

    A little French living in Paris


    Comment by Gaska — July 19, 2006 @ 12:02 pm

  252. Hello,

    Hope I’m not posting ‘après la bataille’ but I saw an item on the Times on line this morning whilst I was surfing during work hours again…,,13509-2276351,00.html

    I myself have lived in France for 10 years now. During this time I have worked in a few large and small companies and seen some things that were definately beyond common sense.

    Unfortunately hiring and firing is so complicated in this country. I have friends seeking employment and who attend 5 or 6 interviews in the same company with different people. Renewing the ‘période d’essai’ has also become ‘normal’.

    I’m sure that things will turn out OK.

    Comment by Louise — July 19, 2006 @ 12:06 pm

  253. I haven’t read all the comments on this so sorry if repeating anything but I would try and find a publisher now. With all the hype and the following, would be a great time to publish with a house that is prepared to go for it.

    On a more pratical level, I know a couple of lawyers so let me know if you need anyone.

    As it is often said those who put “batons dans la roue” only make you stronger.

    good luck

    Comment by monika — July 19, 2006 @ 12:12 pm

  254. read about your blog and being dooced via Maman Poulet and telegraphonline. Stuffy, that’s not a word I’d use to describe your bosses, prehistoric, more likely.

    wishing you lots of luck with the legal bits, and hope all is well eventually

    Comment by ainelivia — July 19, 2006 @ 12:21 pm

  255. I never expected such a thing to happen to you. I mean, nothing you said could have possibly identified the company, and in any case you didn’t say anything damaging about them. Your working life has only been a very small part of what you talk about on your blog, and the company have shot themselves in the foot. They don’t have a case; I don’t see how they could possibly win.

    You were great on the Five Live interview, and imagine my surprise when I saw you on TV when I was flicking through the channels! Going from an anonymous blogger to an international star must be quite a shock to you, but I think this could turn out to be a really good thing.

    Bonne chance!

    Comment by Ian — July 19, 2006 @ 12:32 pm

  256. Petite

    Wow. This must be so surreal for you.

    All the best with the court case. Your writing is brilliant, and perhaps the exposure will turn out to be a blessing in disguise.

    Good luck.

    Comment by nf girl — July 19, 2006 @ 12:36 pm

  257. je trouve ton blog tres jolie . et je suis avec toi pour la reprise de ton travail.
    bisous et a tres bientot

    Comment by cyril — July 19, 2006 @ 12:37 pm

  258. Hey Petite!

    Bon Courage! Go get ’em!!! :)

    P.S. You’re the top story on
    Expatica today !

    Comment by Just Dazzle — July 19, 2006 @ 12:39 pm

  259. pauvre petite cosette…

    Comment by ohlala — July 19, 2006 @ 12:44 pm

  260. Bonjour,

    Je tiens à vous apporter tous mes encouragements puisque j’ai connu la même situation il y a quelques mois. Mon entreprise a pris le pretexte des heures auxquelles je postais mes messages pour lancer une procédure de licenciement.

    J’ai trouvé un autre emploi (bien meilleur) mais je pense qu’il est temps que le legislateur se penche sur le problème

    Très amicalement et bon courage

    Comment by Slovar — July 19, 2006 @ 12:52 pm

  261. The interesting thing is, virtually nobody could really know (and certainly nobody really cared to know) who your employer was.
    Now, as a consequence of their decision, the whole world knows exactly who they are, and that they take themselves way too seriously.

    Good luck with the court case! And, once it’s over, maybe you could write that book…

    Comment by Lionel — July 19, 2006 @ 12:54 pm

  262. Hi “Petite Anglaise”,

    ‘Came across your story on and then read more on your blog… shit happens and after being in France since ’89 I’ve seen a few mishaps… got fired once because of a spelling mistake ! “If you don’t speak the language here the go somewhere where you can !” (Licenciement Économique !)

    C’est la vie… however I prefer the south of France… less english perhaps !

    I really like what I’ve read and hope that you and tadpole are having fun and keeping your summer really “sansstress”… I’m sure you’re going to find a better occupation and more real people to enjoy in the future… et n’oublie pas que tout s’arrange avec le temps… but we only realise later (sic).

    Take care and keep on blogging
    P.S. If you don’t get them with the “Prud’homme” we can try the famous French “Action Directe”…

    Comment by sansstress — July 19, 2006 @ 1:06 pm

  263. So sorry to hear about what has happened – totally unfair.

    I love your blog and think it is as afr away froma “faute grave” as you can get.

    I throughly agree with those who have suggested turning it into a book; I think it will not be long before you are contacted by a publisher – think of Carrie in Sex in the City. Your story has lots of parallels (her column was dumped when she moved to Paris – only for her to secure a book deal) and while I know she’s a fictional character, they say life imitates art.

    Besides, your blog is miles better than any fuschia-pink-covered-chick-lit-rubbish.

    Good luck girl.

    Comment by Lucy — July 19, 2006 @ 1:17 pm

  264. UNBELIEVABLE.I’m sure I would feel shell-shocked and rejected for quite a while. But then, onward and upward to better things, I say. Find an employer who values ALL of your talents

    Comment by kirsty — July 19, 2006 @ 1:18 pm

  265. Surely they should be promoting you, and using you as a PR tool, not sacking you!

    If you worked for me, I’d be proud to have such a talented, witty writer on my team!

    Two fingers to them, and, when you’re offered a publishing deal, I bet they’ll be kicking themselves!

    Comment by Sarah — July 19, 2006 @ 1:52 pm

  266. Oh, I’m so sorry.

    My co-worker once wrote a blog in which she let rip about EVERYTHING in our office – from the noise of people’s chewing to the airfreshner – and it caused no end of hassle when it got found out. But she kept working there (although after a few months she unsurprisingly transferred to another department, as some people found it difficult to work with her). That’s not meant to sound critical of you, Petite, in fact the opposite – having been the subject of someone’s blog, and having read yours avidly for the last few months, I can see the difference in intentions – you’ve never said anything that really brings your place of employment into disrepute; in fact, you’ve generally given the impression of being very happy there; which I guess is why this is so unfair (to my eyes anyway)

    I’m with the people pushing you to publish – the world needs more yorkshire common sense out there.

    Comment by sas — July 19, 2006 @ 2:07 pm

  267. Just found out about your plight today via an article in the irish indo…seems all that can be said about it here already has judging be the comments have randomly read…regardless I can’t begin to imagine how would feel if happened to me…so can’t and won’t offer up fake nuggets of wisdom, except to say that whenever have gone through a crises (and there’ve been quite a few…), have always come out the other end a. stronger, and b. wiser. in fact it’s probably fair to say that nearly all have learned about self and life in general has been curtousy of tough life experiences! so hang in, you’ll come out the other end the better for it guaranteed.

    Comment by Pat — July 19, 2006 @ 2:09 pm

  268. Hi, we would be interested in considering a print edition of your blog. Do email us for a chat.

    With best, Martin Rynja

    Comment by Martin — July 19, 2006 @ 2:11 pm

  269. 2 quick things:

    1. Are you working again?

    2. Don’t large companies such as your former one have disciplinary procedures in place? Did they not follow them first before deciding to axe you? If they did not even start with so much as a reprimand, you might want to find out why. If they did not follow their own prcedures, then that is a point your lawyer might want to exploit.

    Best of luck.

    Note to Hoboken: Go back to New Jersey you twit!

    Comment by Dave of the Lake — July 19, 2006 @ 2:11 pm

  270. Just another message of support. I have been made redundant 3 times, not the same as being sacked I know, but painful just the same. The last time I had to sue to get the maternity payments I would have been due. Legal proceedings are not fun whatever the rights and wrongs, you can feel very vulnerable as lawyers hedge their bets.

    All I can say, is that looking back, each time I got a better job, with more money and have no regrets. It’s not as if you really enjoyed working there anyway. I am sure you are on the way to much better things.

    By the way, I found it hard to get on the website again to leave a comment, maybe your server is overloaded with all the support.

    Comment by varske — July 19, 2006 @ 2:20 pm

  271. I have the feeling this could be the best thing that has ever happened to you! Good Luck with your lawsuit which I am sure you will win.


    Comment by sue — July 19, 2006 @ 2:22 pm

  272. Just found your website and read your story about being let go from your job. My prayers are with you and your daughter. May God Bless you and tadpole.
    I would like to invite you to my website, where you can get prayer, hear music and study God’s Word.

    May God Bless You

    Comment by Johnny Lloyd — July 19, 2006 @ 2:29 pm

  273. hey, you’ve hit the front page of along with an online poll with the question: “Should you expect to risk possible dismissal if you write about work and colleagues in a blog?”
    sure was a surprise to go to your blog to get my daily does of petite only to be greeted by this news. can’t wait to hear the outcome of your lawsuit, but knowing france and french bureaucracy, it will probably be a while. and i am also wondering what mr. frog thinks of all this.

    Comment by cara — July 19, 2006 @ 2:34 pm

  274. coucou petite catherine..
    franchement..c incroyable ce qu’il t’arrive !! si chaque personne que l’on cite dans chacun des blogs qui existent sur le net portait plainte!!!!!!!waw !!
    peut etre parce qu’il est ton employeur celui ci se sent plus concerné ;) tu n’as jamais parlé de lui, sauf de ses bretelles..alors qu’il te laisse tranquille :)
    bisous et bon courage

    Comment by chris — July 19, 2006 @ 2:37 pm

  275. Petite Anglaise

    As a fellow accountant (in a former life anyway) I am SO sorry that you apparently worked for a bunch of w*****s. Trust me, not all Accountants are like that, a large number are truly normal !

    [The firm] will live to regret this, as the negative publicity will assuredly ultimately do them financial damage.

    You go for ’em girl … you have thousands of supporters out here in cyberspace !!!

    Best o’ luck & keep up the Blog – we LOVE it …


    Comment by George — July 19, 2006 @ 2:39 pm

  276. I’m so sorry to hear of the appalling ‘event’, but hopefully, some good will come out of it. I wish you lots of love, luck, happiness, chocolate and beer.

    Kind regards


    Opps, forgot to say, what an absolutely wonderful blog . I have been enthralled since I found it a few days ago. Keep it up.

    Comment by Bahkti — July 19, 2006 @ 2:49 pm

  277. I think the number of comments give some idea of how much support exists. A can of worms has been opened here in terms of how much control employers have over the free speech of their staff.

    I’ve written about this in LifeAndTimes if you’re interested…

    Comment by Jonathan — July 19, 2006 @ 3:02 pm

  278. “[The Firm] has the reputation of being a friendly place to work.” Yeah Right!

    Sorry for you, but I’m sure they’re loosing a good employee.

    Comment by Kris — July 19, 2006 @ 3:03 pm

  279. Just one more thing: If there was ever a time to consider a “The Devil Wears Prada.” style book, this is it. You write extremely well. take advantage of it. Be like Captain Jack Sparrow and sieze “the opportune moment.”

    Comment by Dave of the Lake — July 19, 2006 @ 3:04 pm

  280. A little piece by me, instead of about me, written in the middle of the night.

    This morning was all about realising I couldn’t actually assemble an enormous ikea wardrobe on my own, whilst turning down offers of money from less reputable newspapers… In my defence here, let me say I haven’t received a penny so far.

    Comment by petite — July 19, 2006 @ 3:13 pm

  281. Action Directe

    Hmm I like that wonder how many bloggers we could get to turn up out side their building ime sure the DT would cover it as would Jack from the gruniad.

    I would imaging a compentat lawyer would have a field day at the meeting. I take it that you are being acompanied (not sure if french law allows this I would imagine so)

    Comment by Maurice — July 19, 2006 @ 3:29 pm

  282. Aaaaahh. I have just read about your plight in the The Times and immediately logged on to check out your site. I got fired last year by an arsehole boss and took them to a tribunal and won. It will be tough but hang in there and you’ll get what you deserve. In the meantime start planning the next phase. How exciting! You must get a publisher and get your blog published as a book. In a year’s time you will be glad this happened. I will be checkinbg your site for updates. Good luck!!!

    Comment by sarah Turner — July 19, 2006 @ 3:30 pm

  283. Hello,

    Your fame and literary prowess has reached today’s Times, well done.
    Now you can re-evaluate your options and try new things apart from authorship, get onto the Richard and Judy show, write columns for newspapers, womens magazines and periodicals. We live in the age of mass communication, so you can live anywhere and continue to inform, amuse and get serious if the mood takes you.

    Anyway all power to your keyboard, your secret admirers will continue to scan web space for your unique presence.

    Comment by Petite Albion — July 19, 2006 @ 3:41 pm

  284. Wow! Have just spent ages reading through all the comments and following up quite a lot of the links. You are now world famous and have two offers to publish your book!
    The next few weeks look like being stressful but you have hundreds, probably thousands of supporters following your progress so I hope that gives you confidence.
    Having just read your latest explanation, it is a relief to know that you at least had two months salary. The fact that the firm have dropped the ‘gross conduct’ part shows that they realise they over reacted. All the same, they should have given you a warning before outright dismissal. Surely, they don’t have a leg to stand on.
    It wouldn’t surprise to find you’re headline news on TV when the case comes to court!
    All good wishes and hugs to you and Tadpole.

    Comment by Sablonneuse — July 19, 2006 @ 3:43 pm

  285. They do want to spoil a girls fun don’t they. Don’t back down… we ladies need to fight for our rights.

    Comment by Huzzi — July 19, 2006 @ 3:45 pm

  286. Hi Young Lady!

    Your fight with les Prud’hommes is not won in advance but I bet they ‘ll be wiser than usual. This is a matter of “jurisprudence” and will be seriously scrutinized.
    And you’ll win the prize and get a new sunny job.

    So, if I dare, break your leg !

    I’have seen in Eolas’ that you will be “The Case”.
    Better to have an “over support” in theese circumstances. Your former boss should be green… Quels cons ! (sorry, this is pure, genuine Frog response to those fellows)

    Comment by Saluki — July 19, 2006 @ 3:47 pm

  287. Good for you!

    Good luck! This could well be the start of a whole new adventure

    Comment by Marthe — July 19, 2006 @ 3:47 pm

  288. I cannot believe how out of touch your former company was. Their firing you did so much more damage to their reputation than you could have ever done. What wonderful justice this is. And what A DUMB MANAGEMENT TEAM at your former company. I will be sure to never use them after reading their reasons for firing you.

    Congratulations, I predict you will get many job offers from much more intelligent companies very soon. Keep it up!!!

    Comment by pete — July 19, 2006 @ 3:53 pm

  289. Hi, I just read on a newspaper about you and I can only disagree with what you are trying to achieve. I don’t think it is right and honest to talk about your employers in such a public way without thinking about responsibilities and integrity (how did they find out?). I read other comments from people talking about defending the freedom of bloggers but this will only force employers to make employees sign a confidentiality clause which in itself has the opposite effect. There should be some self-imposed compromise about what and how you write otherwise blogs will turn into gossip columns for people in search of attention, no offense. In any case this is turning out ok for you as I can see you are getting public exposure and you have paying advertisers on yor site (are you sure you are not doing all of this just for money?). Anyway, I personally think that it is a waste of time spending all this time writing and reading blogs, life is full of wonderful things to do especially if you have kids: go and spend those 2 or 3 hours with them because once they grow up you will never get the time lost back. If I am not censored I will comment more on this.
    Good luck

    Comment by Chris Quagliero — July 19, 2006 @ 4:27 pm

  290. Oiee!
    Nossa menina! sua historia veio parar aki no Brasil…
    Não sei nada do que esta escrito no seu blog, pois não sei inglês…
    Mas boa sorte ai em tudo ok?!
    Beijo fica com Deus.

    Comment by Adriana — July 19, 2006 @ 4:29 pm

  291. I took my business elsewhere.

    La Petite Anglaise thank you for an enthralling read, hope you will be able to continue.

    Comment by Dave — July 19, 2006 @ 4:33 pm

  292. PA: Very sorry to hear this. I’ve added you to my list of fired bloggers, a list which, alas, continues to grow.

    Comment by Curt — July 19, 2006 @ 4:42 pm

  293. Sorry to hear your plight young Petite. We ex-pat Bloggers must stick together. I’m glad I don’t have an employer anymore. Sounds to me like you had one of them – a right ‘bar steward’ of a boss.

    I hear that the French employment laws are weighted quite strongly in favour of the employee so go on squezze the old fart dry!

    All the George! (Best)

    Comment by Robbie — July 19, 2006 @ 4:49 pm

  294. Petite,

    The comments above have already said it all. So I’ll just say, stay strong and good luck! I have no doubt you will be better off in the end!

    Comment by Chanda — July 19, 2006 @ 4:55 pm


    Comment by luxbda — July 19, 2006 @ 5:00 pm


    your situation is everywhere, as you can see.

    the repercussion you’ve got is priceless, use that for your benefit and keep in mind that the whole world supports you! And I mean the whole world!

    Good lucky from Brazil!

    Comment by milo — July 19, 2006 @ 5:02 pm

  297. lets see – CNN, New Zealand Herald, Austrailian IT, — You are officially a world-wide phenomenon. I think we’ve DOS’d your server twice now.

    If the military can be sued for holding ‘illegal tribunals’ (RAF courts martial) and lose under EU rules, I’m sure you have an excellent case. I’m regularly mistaken for two other ladies in our building – in person, not just a pic! Since you never gave your name or theirs (until now), how could they even prove it was you?

    Best of luck in the suit and in the rest of your life.

    Comment by Alice — July 19, 2006 @ 5:07 pm

  298. Catherine
    I am very sad for you, as a mother to a mother, as a business woman to a business woman. Don’t cease to blog, don’t cease to be real. Others are right, there is a book in this, and you are very employable. I shall pray that an offer comes soon.
    Courage mon amie en France, vous avez gagnee, ils sont perdues.


    Comment by Lydia — July 19, 2006 @ 5:08 pm

  299. Less reputable newspaper: “We need a photo to go with the article. If you could just take your top off, now take this mouse…”

    Comment by Damian — July 19, 2006 @ 5:08 pm

  300. were all be with you! was reporting about you.

    i think you got publicity all around the world.. and the next job getting much better than the old one! ;)

    keep on rocking.

    Comment by Andre — July 19, 2006 @ 5:12 pm

  301. This might seem like a silly question, but, do you have another job yet?

    Comment by Damian — July 19, 2006 @ 5:14 pm

  302. Regarding the Daily Mail piece– I have to say this whole thing with the “old-school type” boss [who refers to secretaries as “typists”!] being “incandescent with rage” at the gall of the “cheeky secretary” reeks of sexism. It’s quite clear you were never trying to cause trouble there, but now that they’ve brought this media circus on themselves… go ahead and show those brace-wearing leftovers from the Edwardian period what’s what!

    Comment by maitresse — July 19, 2006 @ 5:18 pm

  303. I have just read your story in the Times and could not help visitng your site. I have read many of your blogs and the part time mum one read so true to me as I split with the father of my sun in June and for the first time since I have had him I feel like me again. Like you I was the person who did alot the parenting and the cooking and the cleaning, plus he seems to making more of an effort with his son as he appreciates the time they have together now! Good luck with your case, there are thousands supporting you!

    Comment by Charlene — July 19, 2006 @ 5:20 pm

  304. Glad to see you’re back online. I came to check up on the comments and all I kept getting was the wordpress sign. I guess it’s traffic.

    Comment by Claire — July 19, 2006 @ 5:22 pm

  305. Good luck PA. Don’t worry. I bet somebody reads about this and offers you a job. Every job I’ve packed in has led to better things. Now I’m self-employed I might dooce myself.

    Comment by Raised By Chaffinches — July 19, 2006 @ 5:25 pm

  306. it’s people like you who inspire the rest of us to meet the challenges in life … there is clearly undying support for you and your cause, and I join the many that stand up for what is right, not what is deemed correct … and remember; you were a tadpole once, and look how fantastic life is for you now … all the best, Mark

    Comment by Mark — July 19, 2006 @ 5:32 pm

  307. Job schmob, BLOG ON SISTER!

    Comment by michael MAC — July 19, 2006 @ 5:32 pm

  308. I just read about ur story on, its ridiculous that u were fired because of ur blog. i would fight this, good luck!

    Comment by Elizabeth — July 19, 2006 @ 5:33 pm

  309. You made the Yorkshire Post no less!

    Onward and upward – if you’re self employed you only answer to youself – oh yes and all those agents etc…

    Comment by David — July 19, 2006 @ 5:39 pm

  310. Dear Petite,
    Fight the good fight. And remember, this may be turning in to an interesting life opportunity … your words and thoughts shall not be silenced.
    JanePoe (aka Deborah)

    Comment by Deborah — July 19, 2006 @ 5:44 pm

  311. I was just reading last week about a senior exec in a mojor company who was writing pithy copy for a mainstream paper. This guy was eventually “outed” after years of doing this under a psudynonym. He didn’t get the chop. I’ll have to dig back in and try to find more specifics, but there might be a precident set. Since you never published personally identifyable information I’m not convinced that they can legally sack you.

    If you did use your company ‘puter or time you’ve got a problem, although in this case (in the US anyway) termination w/o a warning wouldn’t be accepted by the system, IMHO.

    Good luck either way. I’ve found being chopped an odd experience but it seems that people with some talent and tenacity land on their feet. You’ve demonstrated both, so I think in the long term you’ll be better off. Just hang in there and enjoy the tadpole. Children accelerate time. When I was unemployed over the summer school break I had so much fun with the kids going back to work was a shock. I’d have much rather stayed home, but that’s the sad think about money.



    Comment by Eric — July 19, 2006 @ 5:57 pm

  312. hey petite anglaise
    very very sorry for you
    hope you’ll find the job of your life
    very soon
    nice blog, like your writing
    don’t stop blogging !!

    Comment by vhike — July 19, 2006 @ 6:02 pm

  313. That phrase towards the end of your Guardian piece-‘Petite versus Goliath’- is a strong early contender for the title of the Hollywood adaptation of your story. I see Julia Roberts in the title role, reprising her performance as the fearless single mum taking on the massive US water firm (you know the one I’m talking about).

    Anyway best of luck with your fight Petite. We all know how David got on against the same opposition..

    Comment by jonathan — July 19, 2006 @ 6:06 pm

  314. Good luck petite! This is ridiculous and completely unjustified and undeserved

    Comment by Maxi — July 19, 2006 @ 6:09 pm

  315. Hi, heard about your story via Just wanted to check in and say I’m really sorry this happened, but so many people are right behind you. Hold your head up high. Good luck. xxx

    Comment by Hannah — July 19, 2006 @ 6:11 pm

  316. I’m very impressed that your story made it on CNN. The only thing that bothered me was that the first words used to describe you were “unmarried mother”. So what!!! Isn’t that a bit off topic. But over all I’m very happy to finally see pictures of you, and connect the words with the face that I consider a role model as both an writer and human being.

    Comment by Sam — July 19, 2006 @ 6:25 pm

  317. Petite,
    much of what you’re going through is nothing more than the work of the Devil!

    Comment by Trevor — July 19, 2006 @ 6:27 pm


    Apparently, even some main computing news website start talking about it.

    Good luck.

    Comment by marius — July 19, 2006 @ 6:28 pm

  319. Hello, I love you

    Comment by Waldemar — July 19, 2006 @ 6:28 pm

  320. Si je comprends bien, vous avez été licenciée en raison de votre blog. J’espère que vous obtiendrez gain de cause devant les tribunaux; étant juriste, il me semble que ce licenciement m’a l’air très douteux. Dès lors que vous ne portez pas préjudice à votre entreprise, à son image ou à ceux qui y travaillent, je ne vois pas en quoi la tenue de votre blog vous exposerait à un licenciement pour faute.

    Personnellement, je tiens un blog athée; bien que la France soit un pays laïque, c’est un aspect de ma vie (un de mes préférés) que j’évite soigneusement de mentionner, notamment sur mon CV. En effet, je n’y fais pas toujours dans la dentelle, mes critiques contre la religion sont parfois hargneuses.


    Comment by Anna — July 19, 2006 @ 6:28 pm

  321. Apologies about access problems you may have been experiencing, I think I’ll have to move my blog to a dedicated server at this rate, my host can’t take the strain using my current account.

    I did spot in excess of 1,000 people online at once earlier, so I suppose it’s to be expected.

    Comment by petite — July 19, 2006 @ 7:37 pm

  322. Oh my GAWD. Are we really going to be forced from now on to wade through some 300-odd random posts to find our beloved nuggets from Trevor? I hope you’ve turned off moderation or THAT will become your new full-time job.

    Comment by LJ — July 19, 2006 @ 7:47 pm

  323. Just adding my good luck wishes to everyone else’s… and I am now thinking of adding a sign next to my link to you saying ‘linking to Petite from before she was world famous!’

    Comment by Kingston Girl — July 19, 2006 @ 7:49 pm

  324. Re 293 Adriana
    Admittedly I don’t speak Brazilian, or Portuguese, but have a feeling my translation beats a well-known computerised translator:
    Nossa menina! sua historia veio parar aki no Brasil…
    Não sei nada do que esta escrito no seu blog, pois não sei inglês…
    Mas boa sorte ai em tudo ok?!
    Beijo fica com Deus.

    Our girl! Your story has reached as far as Brazil…
    I don’t know what you write on your blog as I don’t speak English…
    With good luck everything is ok for you?!
    God be with you.

    Oiee! Our girl! its historia lode to stop aki in Brazil… I do not know nothing of that this writing in its blog, therefore I do not know English… But good luck ai in everything ok! Kiss is with God.

    Hope that’s of some use to someone, somewhere.

    Comment by J — July 19, 2006 @ 7:55 pm

  325. I can’t offer too much advice, but perhaps there is a screenplay or at least a TV-worthy story from what you’ve gone through…obviously you may want to work it up in diary form first, but a pack of English chartered accountants in Paris is perfect…did I catch that right? one of the partners has elastic garters holding his shirtsleeves, eyeshade, or perhaps they use those ye olde ledgers and so on…while Miss efficiency is availing herself of the internet connection…lovely.

    Comment by Terry — July 19, 2006 @ 8:33 pm

  326. Just found out today. Wish you best of luck.

    Here’s another one for your scrapbook:

    Hope it helps a bit ;-)

    Comment by Guy — July 19, 2006 @ 8:39 pm

  327. Bon courage. Je sais qu’il n’est pas évident de vivre en france lorsqu’on y est étranger mais j’espère qu’au moins du coté du boulot, tu auras gain de cause aux prud’hommes.

    Comment by anthony — July 19, 2006 @ 8:41 pm

  328. Argh, does anyone else dislike Chris Quagliero’s condescending tone in his (her?) comment? You’ve got my full support, PA.

    Comment by Molly — July 19, 2006 @ 8:45 pm

  329. Rivetting reading! I wish you the very best.

    Comment by Jim — July 19, 2006 @ 8:46 pm

  330. just watched you on more 4 – thought u were great – potential for job on television?

    Comment by Ellie — July 19, 2006 @ 8:52 pm

  331. I think [your former employer] is the loser in this. They come across as humourless and stuffy. But I would settle out of court if at all possible. No one wins in a protracted battle.

    In a sense I think a bit of the mystery of the blog is lost by you appearing in person on TV. Interesting wandering eyes on the Channel 4 piece though,and lovely glasses!

    Comment by reynard — July 19, 2006 @ 8:56 pm

  332. The door to your Future opens wide, Petite…
    You have so much support, you only have to choose the direction you wish to go.
    (you might have to hire a moderator tho, no? )


    Comment by eric — July 19, 2006 @ 9:06 pm

  333. So sorry to hear what happened to you. I read the article in the telegraph yesterday. Best of luck


    Comment by James — July 19, 2006 @ 9:18 pm

  334. The silly, silly people… Do they not realize that, when you were working there and blogging about them, they were anonymous. Now that you’ve been sacked, they’ve named themselves.

    Everybody nows who talks with the plumby Oxford accent and who set off the Christmas popper in front of a senior partner….

    They should have just left well enough alone. Write that book, girlie. Sell it and make a mint. Okay. I’m a writer. We don’t make mints. But sell it anyway and show them they were wrong. Melissa Lafsky ( had to come out eventually, and she survived. And so shall you.

    Good luck, Catherine (what a fine name you have, by the by), and may all your ducks land in a row.


    Comment by catharine — July 19, 2006 @ 9:22 pm

  335. Salut ma petite :)

    Je ne connaissais pas ton blog, mais je te soutiens pour la suite !

    Bonne chance, je suis convaincu que tu vas les gagner.

    Comment by b_adele — July 19, 2006 @ 9:24 pm

  336. My dear Catherine,

    Right. Let me try and introduce myself.
    I’m a retired man. Always been worked in publishing companies.
    I was shocked to learn on cnn-news channel about your ‘plight’. I won’t go over the details of the things you are being accused of.

    Only a few things here:
    Now that you’re ‘sacked’ as they call it, just pick up the phone and reorder your life. I want to bet within a week you have another, greater job!
    Why? Well, just because great people like you deserve to have one! You’re one of the bravest, most honest and beautiful people I ever ‘met’ in my life. Really!

    I would urge you not to look back at what happened to you this month, but just go on living!
    Oh… yes: one more thing: Please continue writing here!
    I for one would love to read it. I do!!

    Best regards and cheers to you!
    Abby McD.

    Comment by Abby McDale — July 19, 2006 @ 9:30 pm

  337. Bon courage, Petite Anglaise. Il ne faut pas s’en faire, il me paraît extrêmement douteux qu’ils puissent justifier leur action.

    Et merci encore une fois pour ce sens de l’humour même dans cette situation tendue.

    Comment by Phersu — July 19, 2006 @ 9:31 pm

  338. Hi, read about you in yesterday’s telegraph. Just wanted to wish you luck and to say that your bosses have dug themselves into an even deeper hole than if they’d left you alone. Even if you have not named them, I bet they’re world famous now!

    Comment by Carrie — July 19, 2006 @ 9:36 pm

  339. You have got to get a book deal. If I were you I’d be cashing in on cheque book Journalism and generating as much exposure while you have the chance. All is fair in love, war and blogging. You’re selling you’re plight, not your extra marital affair with Shane Warne. Own it girl. Now is not the time to be noble about money, you don’t think you’ve helped them sell enough papers over the last couple of days ?

    Comment by Alicia — July 19, 2006 @ 9:36 pm

  340. I am sorry you have had to go through this. There was another woman who was involved in a lawsuit and ended publishing a very good book – The Washingtonienne. Feel free to e-mail me and I will be happy to mail you a copy!

    Good Luck and I am right behind you!

    Comment by Bridget A. S. — July 19, 2006 @ 9:59 pm

  341. Je vous exprime mon soutien total.
    Bonne continuation

    Comment by FGT — July 19, 2006 @ 10:05 pm

  342. Petite anglaise…I hope you either get your job back or get a better one soon. Check out the EFF site on bloggers’ rights They are US based but are, I’m sure, very interested in your case or may have some resources to help you in your fight. And fight you should! Faute grave, my ass! Given the tight French employment laws you should at least receive a good settlement.

    Comment by John — July 19, 2006 @ 10:07 pm

  343. Well done you!

    Whoop their asses! Your boss was “incandescent with rage”, then i saw his pic (after a bit of a google)and imagined it – I nearly choked laughing.

    Not once did you give anything about your company away. You really have nothing, on that score, to worry about.

    Some corporate weasels really don’t know what real life is all about, or think that they can treat other people in such a way that there is no comeback. I really hope you show them otherwise!

    Comment by Kartoffel Waffel — July 19, 2006 @ 10:13 pm

  344. I haven’t read all the comments. Too many! I would just like to say that I’m so sorry for what has happened. Just want to wish you well, and hope that you wont get too depressed. My weblog today features the bit I read in the “Daily mail” just in case somebody missed what has happened. Bon chance!

    Comment by keith — July 19, 2006 @ 10:19 pm

  345. You also made CNN dear, you’re becoming quite the media story.

    Stick up for your rights, don’t let anyone push you around and convince you your fight is not a worthy one.

    Comment by katrina — July 19, 2006 @ 10:36 pm

  346. I read about your situation on CNN. I feel for you as I am a single dad, have been proudly for seven years. It CAN be done. Keep the faith and good luck to you and Tadpole in the future. God bless.


    P.S. I hope you “stick it” to the man!

    Comment by Curtis — July 19, 2006 @ 10:36 pm

  347. Catherine,

    My sincere apologies for what your faced with these passing days. You must remember what a wonderful door you have opened for many of us. Your purpose may not have been revealed to you as of yet, but I would suspect it is becoming more apparent with each assing day. Good Luck ! Warm Wishes.. Maintain your Heavenly ways !


    Comment by Dave — July 19, 2006 @ 10:42 pm

  348. You are on the very front page of, both US and International editions. Holy crap!

    Comment by LJ — July 19, 2006 @ 10:43 pm

  349. Hun,
    You were obviously employed by insecure people and as sad as I am about your situation you will end up better off for this all. They are not worthy of such a treasure as you. I’m sure they are sorely missing your abilities and lovely presence at the office.
    I perused much of your blog and thoroughly enjoyed it, can’t wait to get a look at your book.
    I hope the litigation is quick and lucrative for you.
    My best wishes and warm regards to you and Tadpole.


    Comment by Mike — July 19, 2006 @ 10:52 pm

  350. f*x to them. youll win your case, and the world will be better for it.

    yay blogs! boo stuffy british companies!

    Comment by nicholas — July 19, 2006 @ 11:06 pm

  351. How did they find out about your blog?

    I definitely don’t think you should have been fired for what you wrote; everything was anonymous and people are entitled to their personal opinions. I wish you the best of luck in your job search.

    Comment by DeoDuce — July 19, 2006 @ 11:08 pm

  352. I read about your plight today on and decided to check out your site. I really enjoyed your blog. It’s interesting and very well written. I wish you and Tadpole all the best! Hang in there and keep fighting!

    Comment by Jean — July 19, 2006 @ 11:12 pm

  353. I too was fired for inappropriate use of office email. Our email is read by our employers and they have the right to do so according to the warnings my employer sent to the entire company. BIG BROTHER does live among us. Save your email communications for home.

    Comment by Chris — July 19, 2006 @ 11:12 pm

  354. What exactly surprised you???

    You were warned in April 2005.

    Petite Anglaise: The blog that cost your daughter a stable, two-parent family and you your job.

    Indeed, you’re not naive. Just very foolish.

    [Dave is referring to a fictional April Fool’s post about being dooced, written on, you guessed it, 1 April 2005.]

    Comment by Dave — July 19, 2006 @ 11:15 pm

  355. Cela remets en question les droits de la blogosphère… Comme les blogs sont un phénomène relativement récent, les bloggers n’ont quasiment aucune protection lorsque survient un cas comme le tien. Les journalistes bloggers n’ont, par exemple, pas les mêmes droits quand à la protection de leurs sources que s’ils publiaient leurs articles dans une publication officielle. J’espère que cela va changer.

    Comment by Bibil — July 19, 2006 @ 11:24 pm

  356. blooger, dooce – who speaks from experience – has this to say about this blogging vs. work

    “I started this website in February 2001. A year later I was fired from my job for this website because I had written stories that included people in my workplace. My advice to you is BE YE NOT SO STUPID. Never write about work on the internet unless your boss knows and sanctions the fact that YOU ARE WRITING ABOUT WORK ON THE INTERNET. If you are the boss, however, please don’t be a bitch and talk with your hands. And when you order Prada online, please don’t talk about it out loud, you rotten whore.”

    while you at least made an attempt at anonymity – your blog site was found, and somehow discovered by the firm. and i they can discover you and the link, then it means that regular everyday people can as well – which leads to bad PR for the firm.

    don’t bite the hand that feeds you – at least not to a worldwide public audience.

    Comment by SD Wahoo — July 19, 2006 @ 11:25 pm

  357. I agree wholeheartedly with LJ (comment no 324).

    Comment by suze — July 19, 2006 @ 11:26 pm

  358. Do you think you will be interviewed by Richard and Judy?

    Comment by Pomgirl — July 19, 2006 @ 11:27 pm

  359. Good luck with your fight. Too many old fuddy-duddy’s in big business today. :-(

    Comment by Stephen — July 19, 2006 @ 11:27 pm

  360. Good luck for the prudhommes, you definetely have your chances.
    They will have some difficulties to give any proof of your blog being bad for the image of their company. But this is probably not what they are going to use in order to justify the “faute grave”.
    It is more likely that they are going to try to give a proof that you have been updated your blog during working hours. Unless they log every connections to the internet in the company, and meet the requierements shown on this web page: they may have some difficulties to do so…

    In any case the support of your “syndicat” could probably be of good help.

    Good luck…

    Comment by Adrien — July 19, 2006 @ 11:32 pm

  361. Sorry to see another company treating technology-realted misdemeanours as much more sreious than others: this is something I explored in my radio play Dooced, wholly fictitious, I’m glad to say.

    Comment by martin — July 19, 2006 @ 11:37 pm

  362. Read about your case on WAP; can’t see that they have much of a case. Fightit all the way. All the best!


    Comment by adder — July 19, 2006 @ 11:38 pm

  363. ::hugs:: Keep on fighting and writing. Hell, maybe you can get a movie deal! :)

    Comment by Scottie — July 19, 2006 @ 11:40 pm

  364. I think you’re writing is fabulous. A job in another field perhaps (than your previous) is awaiting you! Blogs are suppose to be for free thinking, don’t they get it? Looking back, maybe that company is one you don’t want to work for, if they don’t believe in that…

    Comment by Leslie — July 19, 2006 @ 11:44 pm

  365. I’m afraid I can comment, but the general public still cannot. A site redirect is still in place due to heavy traffic.

    Comment by petite — July 20, 2006 @ 3:55 pm

  366. I know it’s a lot to ask, but if anyone has a subscription to the online Daily Express, I’d love to see the two page article reproducing long extracts from my blog without my permission (without speaking to me, in fact). You can email me with the link, I won’t out you for reading such quality journalism in the first place (!)

    It’s entitled: “The secretary, her uptight boss and a racy internet diary that got her sacked”.

    I have to say, so far my experience with the tabloids has confirmed my general opinion of them. A Daily Mail reporter has been sniffing around my parents’ village all day trying to get people to comment. And all because I refused a (paid) feature.

    I do have morals, you know.

    Comment by petite — July 20, 2006 @ 3:55 pm

  367. J’espère vraiment que tout ce passera bien pour toi (et j’espère que j’ai bien tout compris, but i guess so ;) ).

    This guys by firing you may offer you th chance of your life, won this suit, put some ads on the blog (to pay the lawer fees and some spare time) and you could become a professionnal blogger maybe ;)

    tout de bon, et courage!

    Comment by zeropaper — July 21, 2006 @ 3:59 pm

  368. Hello Petite Anglaise, i love your blog, although obviously not the part about you being dismissed! Hopefully you will win the case and buy Tadpole and yourself a massive apartment in Paris with all your compensation.

    Just thought i’d give you my friend’s blog address as she too is a Yorkshire lass working in Paris and it is hilarious.

    The address is

    Au Revoir x

    Comment by Leanne — July 21, 2006 @ 4:10 pm

  369. Here’s a link to an article from the Mail online.

    Good Luck by the way I am enjoying your blog.

    Comment by Danny — July 21, 2006 @ 4:18 pm

  370. Thats so unbelievably not right. What you say online in a blog has nothing to do with your work when you never say the name of the business. They have no right to stop your freedom of speech. I read your blogs and I really don’t see how they can do that. I hope everything works out for you. Good Luck to you. I’m writing this from the U.S. Massachusetts to be exact.

    Comment by Theresa — July 21, 2006 @ 4:20 pm

  371. I am so so sorry, petite. I wish you and Tadpole the very best and I really hope you “sock it to them.” I must admit, however, I had never actually read a “blog” before, but after reading yours, you sure know how to make someone hungry for your writing. You are a very terrific author, keep up the fantastic work.

    Comment by Toni — July 21, 2006 @ 4:39 pm

  372. Hi Catherine
    I’ve been following your story for the last few days and fail to understand that you have done anything wrong at all. What a sad old bunch they must be, do they not realise it is 2006. Anyway just to make laugh I once worked at an office in Sheffield where there was a pint of milk with a post-it note on it saying “Directors Milk” how sad is that! Hope all goes well and carry on with your marvellous diary.
    Best regards

    Brian Collins (Harpenden)

    Comment by Brian Collins — July 21, 2006 @ 5:54 pm

  373. Dear petite anglaise

    about the bosses who fired you:


    by legal action


    Comment by Wt — July 21, 2006 @ 6:04 pm

  374. To Brain Collins
    Depends if the director was just back from maternity leave!
    Sorry petite, couldn’t resist.

    Comment by J — July 21, 2006 @ 7:32 pm

  375. Hi, Young Lady.

    I strongly recommend you hurry to hire a 40″ container in order to file in your pressbook ;°)
    This sounds good for your prud’hommes case: Take the money and run…to better life, better job.

    Some comments state about your [former employers] “they gunned their foot”. No. They used a Scud…
    Yes, I edited myself [former employers] instead of a four letter word :°D

    Comment by Saluki — July 21, 2006 @ 7:50 pm

  376. The best of luck to you. Totally ridiculous on their part.

    Comment by Neil — July 22, 2006 @ 10:49 pm

  377. Coucou, Petite!

    You did well to sit on this for a while. Imagine being weighed under by all these reactions whilst you were still getting over the shock.

    Isn’t traditional press coverage annoying (if useful)? I was getting grumpy about that extra “La” that made it into the AFP and CNN and Telegraph article, then about the “Bridget Jones” references and the rip-off quotes of comments on Colin Randall’s blog that CNN put in their take… then you mention the irresponsible behavior of the Daily Express and, worse, the Daily Mail reporters – and I start fuming. You did well to write your own version. Also to leave this as the latest post here, so everyone can read the comments.

    The photos are nice, but shoots are embarrassing (in my limited experience). I do like the one of you at the Louvre best. You look rather Laura Linney-like. But glasses become you, too.

    I’m only sorry I don’t check in more often. Tuesday still on?

    Comment by Alethea — July 23, 2006 @ 3:33 am

  378. Dearest Darling,
    What can I say in support of your case that has not been said already?
    i have been through it, being sacked twice and several other times not having been hired as “unsuitable material” (I am a scientist with good degrees and speak several languages – also worked in Paris, London and elsewhere for big multinational companies as Consultant).
    To encapsulate:
    1. fighting in court a former employer is brave, but very harrowing and probably a winable case if you have good lawyers – you should be able to get a good English firm of Lawyers in Paris to take you on for free (Pennington’s?)
    2. The silver lining aspect YES it will be there – I even managed, years after I was dismissed to sell my servives to the same companies for infinitely more than they might have paid me if I had the misfortune to stay on . Like wise this happenned to companies which did not want me as an applicat for their jobs, used my more expensive services as a Consultant and paid the price – great glee – I can tell you, or as they say it; “what goes round comes round” your come-uppance will be the book which you must write, even if you were to self-publish it and your suporters will buy it – even make it into a film script.

    Keep the pecker up and bonne chance or as they say in french “m***de”

    Continental Brit

    Comment by Continental Brit — July 23, 2006 @ 6:07 pm

  379. As I tried to say at the time, only to be prevented by the insane amount of traffic:

    I’ve never really got an overwhelming anti-workplace vibe reading this site, just picked up on the few mentions which I think anyone would put in.

    That said, I never realised I was supposed to be reading this blog with a Yorkshire burr, so some good has come of it…

    Comment by Huw — July 23, 2006 @ 8:54 pm

  380. How ridiculous this whole saga is ….

    Good for you, that it has developed attention.

    Who cares that you were married, had a daughter etc.

    Are you and your daughter happy?

    So you were unhappy after eight years. The majority of people are. Then you met someone who re-iginted romance. This is obvious. Most folk that leave a long term relationship get swept away by the overwhelming feelings that are felt in a new relationship.

    How wonderful that you experienced this.

    Will it last, hell no …

    The new relationship is enticing, but it is the axcitement that is enticing. This will not last.

    So you left your partner.

    Good for you.

    People are so critical.

    Thank god, I consider myself Australian .. I was born in the UK but moved to Australia when I was 4 … I came back to the UK 2 years ago. I have spent time working in Europe, the States etc …

    I must say that I find it all too odd that you are judged.

    I think the Australian way of life cares more about the feelings of the person involved, rather than the thoughts of outsiders.

    You support your daughter. Brilliant. Surely this is the most important thing.

    So your marriage did not work, neither did your online relationship … big deal.

    I am horrified that your employers did not accept your blogging.

    If I employed you, I would see this as postitive publicity, unless I was ahamed about what you said.

    In that case I should be ashamed as an employer.

    Any employee of mine should feel free to talk about my company and I should be proud, otherwise I am doing something wrong.

    So you were married, and had a relationship …. bloody hell everyone does.

    It will probably take another 3 or 4 relationships to find someone.

    This is normal.

    Unfortunately, you do it under the public eye.

    Most of the outspoken public are those that feel strongly about this and are not representive of the general public.

    Good luck …


    Comment by Charlotte — July 24, 2006 @ 1:10 am

  381. Stuffy fellows, these French bureaucrats. Hang on in there.

    Comment by bayi — July 24, 2006 @ 5:06 am

  382. Catherine I am so very sorry but don’t despair. I was suspended too because of my blog, accused of bringing my employers into disrepute and of breach of confidentility. I was in total shock, simply couldn’t believe they could have interpreted anything I wrote in such a light. Like you, I thought ‘gross misconduct’ meant at the very least allowing a child in my care to be abused, but apparently not.

    It was simply horrendous but after six weeks I did get my job back. All is not lost.

    And if you don’t get your job back, you will surely win for unfair dismissal.

    Good luck – very many people who you have never heard of are wishing you all the best.

    Comment by J.J — July 24, 2006 @ 9:21 am

  383. “In the future everyone will be famous for 15 minutes.” dixit Warhol
    You get it ;-)

    Comment by loran — July 24, 2006 @ 11:39 am

  384. Never read this blog before, until I read the article in the Daily Telegraph. Seems this might be the perfect moment to change directions and turn your writing into a profession. Maybe try stories about a boy who becomes a magician in a strange boarding school ;)

    Good luck,


    Comment by Casper — July 24, 2006 @ 12:13 pm


    Hi Petite,

    This is the link to the Flemish article that was published in Flanders/Belgium on 19/7, apparently now only to be seen in (payable) archives, you can add it to your press-list ;) But it is how i first ‘met’ your website and your pleasant way of writing and i haven’t stopped looking on your blog since :D Working as a Flemish girl in the mostly-French-speaking-Capital of Belgium, i enjoy reading yr blog a lot !

    Sorry it had to go this way, on the other hand i truly believe the French court can’t ignore the stupidity of your former boss’ reasoning.

    Bonne continuation !

    Comment by Marjolein — July 24, 2006 @ 2:11 pm

  386. I am brasilian, from the San Poul (São Paulo).

    Well, i read your story in the news paper here in brazil, and i’m so sorry about all this.

    Vanderlei Ferreira.
    My inglesh is very poor….sorry.

    Comment by Vanderlei P. Ferreira — July 24, 2006 @ 4:03 pm

  387. Well, lots has happened in the blogosphere in the week I’ve been away. Figures!

    I’m sorry that this has happened to you; I wish you luck with les prud’hommes.

    Although I don’t comment here much, I have often marveled at your lovely writing. May you be able to twist this unfortunate event into an opportunity.

    Comment by Alison — July 26, 2006 @ 3:27 am

  388. Hi Petite,
    I from Poland and I read about your situation 10 minutes ago.I’m so sorry that this happened to you,I think that everything will be ok…
    Good luck
    Adrian M.

    Comment by Adrian... — July 26, 2006 @ 10:47 am


    Hi Petite,

    This is the link to the Polish article that is published today. I’ve never read your blog before but I keep my fingers crossed for you!

    Good luck!


    Comment by Ewa — July 26, 2006 @ 11:37 am

  390. Wow, you’re gaining International fame. Even down here in Malaysia we’ve heard of your case. Keep on blogging, sock ’em!

    I heard that you were approached by publishers?? Good luck on that!

    Comment by Ruth — July 26, 2006 @ 1:24 pm

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