Pets Gain Membership Rights To Club

photo: cafe la corona

La Corona, bar-tabac and onion soup café.

News About the 'Café Metropole Club'

Paris:- Saturday, 13. November 1999:- It appears as if your exclusive 'Club' in Paris is headed for success beyond its wildest projections.

These were, of course, standard-issue 'Internet' projections. As you well know, these are always based on the proven mathematical formula of one times one cubed equals 437 billion.

Some longtime charter members were called out of Paris on pressing business in other parts of the world, but since last Thursday was Armistice Day in Europe, some original charter members brought their husbands, who immediately acquired charter memberships of their own.

The moms of last week, although one less, also produced two new charter members. These were Maryann and Joe Platania, who had never heard of the 'Club' because they never heardphoto: two onion soups of the 'Club's' online magazine, 'Metropole Paris.'

Although only staying in Paris for two days, the Platanias immediately became charter members nevertheless, and on top of it, added a new town to the 'Club's repertory: Rochester, New York.

Three hands, two onion soups, one café crême and one beer.

Nearly all other 'Club' members immediately claimed one-time past residence in this fair city too, adding it to Minnesota, which I think is a state, and Albany, which definitely is a city, though not a big one.

As photo editor of the host magazine, I immediately recognized Rochester as being the home town of 'Kodak,' but despite all the present and past Rochesterians present, nobody could tell me what the word 'Kodak' means.

But - and this is why the 'Club' values its 'virtual' charter members as much as its regular charter members - 'virtual' charter member John McCulloch and 'Metropole Paris' exclusive reporter for Paris, Nevada, cranked up his Internet gizmo and virtually visited Kodak's Web site in Rochester, New York.

John's report:

"George Eastman picked the name out of thin air in 1888. 'K' was a favorite letter of his, and he wanted a short name with two 'K's' in it. He fooled around with other letters until he foundphoto: two toy poodles the right combination of 'a,' 'd' and 'o' and 'Kodak' was, is the result. He also picked the red and yellow, without realizing they are Spain's national colors."

"We are lucky he didn't pick something metric, like 'Kilodak."

Two of the 'Club's' new 'virtual' members, eating a giant marshmallow. Photo: ©John McCulloch.

Since a photo of La Corona's 'Tabac' sign coupled with a 'Kodak' sign recently appeared - by pure chance! - in the 'American' feature in issue 4.44, John has added his two toy poodles as 'virtual' charter members, and sent their ID photo. Here they are, above.

'Virtual' charter member David Leslie has also written - on Sunday! - to say that in 'Made in America,' author Bill Bryson tracked down a British patent application made by George Eastman. These required explanations for registering trade and brand names. Eastman wasted no words; it is short, incapable of mispronunciation, it resembles nothing and cannot be associated with anything except the 'Kodak.' He was referring to the camera, which had some other name until then.

The Cafe Metropole Club is proceeding at an obviously stepped-up pace and something slightly exciting happens at it nearly every week. For this reason, I cannot resist continuing the bombast that I have produced in this column for the past several weeks.

For a sketchy account of the 'Club's' fifth meeting, you are requested to hit this link in order to have it before your own eyes.

Café Metropole Club Membership Cards

Since last week, the situation with the 'popular demand' for membership cards - not obligatory! - has changed radically. Yesterday, Friday, 12. November, charter 'virtual' member Dale sent the following message, via the Internet:

"You cannot imagine the excitement of your followers here in the United States when they finally received their membership cards which recognizes their need to have concrete proof of belonging to such a prestigious group as Paris interpole with headquarters next door to the Louvre on veterans day, a day that for World War Two veterans means a decline in clubs they can belong to because of natural attrition rate of 1100 deaths per day causing the Vets' clubs to close due to lack of membership and any club such as yours with membership forever is a blessing especially with the side benefits it offers or seems to offer at all establishmentsphoto: virtual membership card other than ATM machines, due to its small size I presume - because my personal card printed out to one by two inches using Paintbrush and bitmap files.

Just tear it out and make yourself a member.

"However, its value to me as a card-carrying member will allow me to keep it near my passport and request all the privileges, discounts, freebees, special offers, free travel, and head of the line considerations that can normally be expected of such a valuable card printed on Hammermill Jet-Print 'Ultra,' and signed, and dated, and laminated with a picture of Ric on the obverse side so that recognition should be easy when confronted by possible charges of fraud, which may be considered by non-participating business establishments and non-complying bartenders, who I figure are few in the city of Paris."

Thank you, Dale, for putting it so succinctly so well!

For 'virtual' or real Café Metropole Club members who have come in late, you will note that this is a 'virtual' membership card. If you want to carry around with you - perhaps to prove that you belong to an exclusive* club in Paris - you will have to make a print of it, as Dale has so cleverly done.

I do not understand why his card only measures one inch by two. When it left here - via the Internet - it measured about 55 by 85 millimetres - on the metric system - which is something over two inches by nearly three and a half - on the 'inch' system.

However, I should point out, its size doesn't matter. Once printed, simply cut it out along the dotted line I have failed to indicate - you can imagine about where it is. Then trim it. If it does turn out to be about the size of a standard plastic card, don't try to use it in any ATM machine - as they may swallow it.

As for the 'text-only' version of the card that was featured here two weeks ago; although now part of the 'club's' rich history, this is still acceptable for use by folks who have no printer, 'Ultra' or otherwise.

*'Exclusive' in this sense means that it is the only Café Metropole Club in Paris that accepts members, and their pets. People from other planets or star systems are requested to not apply.

The Whole History of the Café Metropole Club

With its fifth meeting behind it, the 'Whole History' of the Café Metropole Club has become too long and boring to repeat, and is therefore, hereby, suppressed. Older versions of its 'History' do remain online, somewhere in ' All Past Issues.'

The Café Metropole Club Is a Good-Value Club

The 'Club' has no actual real or virtual benefits, but is excellent value for what it costs. Its sole purpose is to offer an opportunity for all readers to meet each other and me, the 'Ed' of this online weekly magazine about Paris, in Paris.

If, at the same time, you feel like having a nice a hot onion soup, these can be had for a modest outlay of 45 francs on your part, but having one is not obligatory. Warning: these 'hot' onion soups are very hot.

So that no one is excluded by virtue of not being in Paris, 'virtual' membership is not only permitted, but encouraged. It is not necessary to be in Paris - even 'virtually' - if you wish to do this. Possession of the new 'virtual' membership card is not obligatory. Since last week's meeting, even reading the 'Club's' online magazine, 'Metropole Paris,' is not obligatory.

Practical Information

photo: location map, la coronaHere are the day, time and location details for you to note:

Café-Tabac La Corona
2. Rue de l'Amiral Coligny
Paris 1. Métro: Louvre-Rivoli or Pont-Neuf
Every Thursday at 15:00, until 17:00.

La Corona has a small 'salle' just off the bar and a large 'salle' behind the bar. There is a small terrace on the Rue de l'Amiral Coligny side, which faces west; and a big terrace on the Quai de Louvre side, which faces south. The club meetings are held at the rear of the big 'salle.'

There have been unconfirmed reports of first-time members reaching the bar of La Corona and failing to find the meeting place. La Corona's staff have been alerted to this possible situation. If you are non-member at the bar of La Corona and you are dragooned into the big 'salle' by the café's over-enthusiastic staff, you have my apologies, and are welcome to join the 'Club.'

See you soon - A bientôt à Paris,
signature, regards, ric

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