Death in Marly Is Internet's Loss

Cafe L'Entreacte
The café L'Entreacte, right across from the Opéra.

'Golden October' Officially Over At Last

by Ric Erickson

Paris:- Monday, 3 November 1997:- Last week I wrote here, "I have erroneously announced the end of 'Golden October' several times prematurely."

I can now definitively state that 'Golden October' is over, because it is November. I have never heard of a 'Golden November.' What people in Paris usually call it is unprintable.

All the same, here is the weather update: regardless of how much mist or fog there is in the mornings, it usually clears by 11:00 or noon - to reveal low, but bright sun. The shadows get longer and more blue and it is cool in them. In the sunlight it is comfortable.

This is the longest, single season of good weather that I can remember since 1976 (the Endless Summer) - which is now going for its 10th consecutive week.

Death In Marly

Last Monday Metropole carried the feature 'E-mail For Everyone in France?' with the subhead, 'Marly-le-Roi Points Way - Via Minitel.' This was a story about one French town's intention to give every resident an E-mail account, at the initiative of the Mayor, François-Henri Le Virieu.

As I was doing the final corrections on last week's issue on Monday morning, radio France-Info announced the death of Mr. Le Virieu; at 01:30 that morning.

I considered this for a couple of minutes and decided that the story was about the Marly version of 'E-mail for All in France,' and expo: Franco-Allemandes not about its godfather.

[ I had noted that the Friday launch was presided over by the deputy-mayor, Bernard Longhi. I had wondered why at the time, but hadn't thought to ask about the whereabouts of the mayor.]

Thus, Metropole went online on time, without an update.

What I did not know, was that last May François-Henri Le Virieu went public about his illness, in the columns of the municipal journal with the title, "I Owe You the Truth." He added that readers of Marly-le-Roi's 'Le Chronique' were getting it first, straight from his pen and they were getting it without the usual filters.

Mr. Le Virieu had been mayor of Marly-le-Roi for only a short time. In the space of something like two years, this man of no party affiliation, carried forward his predecessor's plan of 'Marly Moderne' to his own 'Marly XXIe Siècle.' Last week's Internet initiative was part of his plan to make local administration accessible to all residents - without filters.

Besides keeping 'open house' at the city hall, for members of the administration and for members of the public, Mr. Le Virieu also managed to attract business to Marly - in the form of the brand-new French headquarters of the pharmaceutical giant, Glaxo-Wellcome.

Born in Paris on 18. December 1931, François-Henri Le Virieu started his career as a journalist as an editor of the economic section of 'Le Monde.'

He served a stint as a political editor of L'Nouvelle Observateur, co-founded the daily 'Le Matin de Paris,' and was responsible for midday TV-news on TFI until 1972; he was director of news on 'Antenne 2' in the early '80's, and finally was producer-presenter of France 2's important TV-magazine 'L'Heure de Vérite' for 13 years, until 1995.

Funeral services were held in Marly last Thursday, attended by 800; residents of Marly, and a great crowd from the Paris worlds of politics, publishing, TV and journalism.

Since Marly now has direct access to the world - and the world to it - as a result of François-Henri Le Virieu's efforts - to remove filters - I think it would be a reasonable gesture to let Marly know you know - they are online, worldwide.

Write to the acting Mayor, who I assume is Bernard Longhi, if you wish to make any comment about this subject.

Paris Goes to Vegas

It was announced some time ago that the Bally Resorts division of the Hilton Hotel chain, planned to build its own version of 'Paris' in the Nevada desert, near Las Vegas.

This is welcome news indeed, and Metropole reader John McCulloch has been able to supply us with an excellent photo of the site as it appeared recently. As can be seen, Nevada, as a new site for Paris, has several advantages over the present location in the Ile-de-France. Nevada is roomy.

Las Vegas 'Paris'

It may not look like much now, but this is 'Paris' new location in Las Vegas. Photo by John McCulloch©1997

I had been unaware that the Tour Eiffel is Paris' 'central feature,' but it will be so in the 'new' Paris. Bally plans a 50-story replica of the tower, with a 'prominent' French restaurant and at the top there will be an 'amazing' view of the Las Vegas 'strip,' plus I imagine, a bit of surrounding desert as well.

Planned replicas of other familiar sites include the Arc de Triomphe, the avenue de Champs-Elysées, the Opéra Garnier, the Parc de Monceau and the rue de la Paix.

The originals of these are in the west and central arrondissements of the city and for the moment there seems to be no plans for replicas of Montmartre, astille or the Quartier Latin, nor any for the Seine or any of its islands. Nevada seems unready for the pleasures of the bateaux mouches.


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