Senior, Associate Senior, and Responsible Senior Vice-President
France has an incredible number of vice-presidents. It seems like everyone is a VP of some kind or another. For example, every police officer and traffic cop wears a shirt that says “Associate Senior Vice-President” on it. And all the time I see road signs that say “Give way to oncoming traffic. Senior Vice President” (of what, I don’t know). Or when you get invited to a party, you must contact the Responsible Senior Vice President to let the host know if you’re coming or not. I’m not sure what’s up with all these vice presidents. I mean some of them are like 20 years old. I thought you had do earn such a designation.
But at least the French have figured out how to abbreviate. Instead of putting Associate Senior Vice President on the shirts of law enforcement, they simply put “A.S.V.P.” for short. It’s cheaper that way. And on the road signs, when it’s signed by the Senior Vice President it just says “S.V.P.” And on party invitations, it just says “R.S.V.P”, when telling you who to call. Very efficient. Must have borrowed from the Germans.
But in my American opinion there’s an even better way: Instead of trying to intimidate people with titles, why not just say Please? I mean, people respond well when you’re nice, and in French the word for please, S’il vous plait, can be abbreviated to SVP, so it works perfectly. ASVP could mean “Attention S’il Vous Plait (pay attention, use caution), “Cedez le passage, SVP” would just mean “Give way please”, and RSVP could just mean “Respond, please”. Hopefully these people will get it soon. My ideas could really help them.