...Continued from page 1

After France Télécom used pumpkins in a publicity campaign, they were followed a year later by massive promotions by McDonald's, Disney and Coca-Cola - which supposedlyphoto: latina cafe convinced the French that Halloween was 'imposed' by American firms.

With pumpkins - 'citrouilles' in French - being a major symbol, Mr. Cahen took a big leap and very quietly registered 'Halloween' as a world trademark, which nobody else had thought to do.

With this monopoly of the name, Mr. Cahen has raised his firm's turnover, with his own products and with licensing fees, from 15 million francs in 1998 to 45 million francs.

Latina Café has cool interior and salsa music too, in Champs-Elysées area.

Meanwhile, French pumpkin growers - who pay no licensing fee - have seen a low-popularity vegetable turn golden. Last week in Seine-et-Marne there were none left for sale.

Horse Jailed for Speeding On Champs-Elysées

A couple of German car jockeys ran a red light on the Champs-Elysées last Monday and got flagged over by the flics. They were, as Le Parisien puts it, not polite to the cops - especially after they were told to pay a 900 franc fine on the spot.

They refused with a level of unpoliteness bordering on another offense, and were conducted to the nearest lockup. However, this swank jail had no place available for their horse, which was handed over to the Garde Républicaine, which has stables out at Vincennes.

On Wednesday, the jockeys finally decided to pay the fine. Their car was liberated and so was the race horse - without any extra charges for its upkeep and transport across Paris from its trailer to its lockup and back again.

Notre-Dame On View Again, Soon

After six years the restoration of the facade of Notre-Dame has been completed, according to Le Parisien's editions on Wednesday. The cost of the work has been estimated at 97 million francs - not counting the cost of disappointment to tourists and lost revenue by photo-film producers.

Its result is supposed to be beautiful, but when I passed on Friday, the scaffolding was still in place. Apparently it will be completely removed between Saturday, 20. November and Saturday, 18. December. Meanwhile, two other restoration projects begin on the Paris landmark.

Winter Time

Unless I have been unalert, this is the first year that Europe and the United States have returned to 'winter time' simultaneously. To be exact, by setting clocks back at 03:00 - 'Summer Time' - to 02:00 - 'Winter Time' - this morning.

This clock-changing measure is not really appreciated in France, where it has only been practiced sincephoto: falstaff, montparnasse 1976. Resetting video-recorder clocks two times a year is more than can be reasonably required of any householder.

Nearly three-quarters of residents in France polled say they prefer an unique annual 'time' and 62 percent would like this to be 'summer' time.

Falstaff has been in Montparnasse since the '20's.

Le Parisien reports that 'most' of Europe reverts to 'winter' time today. In past years, Britain and Ireland changed clocks on different dates, which created incredible confusion as there were two brief periods of the year when there was a two-hour time difference between London and the continent instead of the usual one.

Whether this is the case this year, is not explicit as both these offshore island countries may not be in the 'most' category.

French Web Life

Very little - that I became aware of - was the total of 'life on the Web' in France last week. There is always Internet 'business' of course, but this is mostly dreamland and the purest PR and I don't pay much attention to it.

The Week's URL Shorties - as a result of the recent 'Quay of Speech Balloons' in Saint-Malo, comic scenarists are exchanging speech balloons through the medium of 'volleybulles,' between designers in France and Gabon, which is supposed to be a way to show how comics are made using computers. Germany's Deutsche Bahn has started its Surf&Rail Web site which permits buying 2nd-class train tickets online. What is new is that you print them out too, and these tickets are good at 111 DB stations. All you want to know about the theatre; especially what is playing and what you should see, is presented by the new site, Webthea. The site also offers links to other theatre-related sites. Suggestions for these Web site references have been supplied by 'Internet Actu.'

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