The Member's List Gains Steam

photo: la corona cafe machine

The café La Corona has a Alfa Romeo of an express-
café machine.

News About the 'Café Metropole Club'

Paris:- Saturday, 29. January 2000:- Last Thursday's meeting at the café La Corona was a very soothing experience. It was clear and cold outside and inside it was warm and the café was striped by sunrays.

The only thing missing, besides a lot of café customers, was any old, new, virtual or real club members. I must have known this would be the case in advance, because I took the day's issue of Le Parisien with me, and had a long chance to read the whole thing - except for the racing news.

Two weeks ago I hinted that club members were neglecting their keyboards, and put it down to the January 'blahs.' In fact, club members have been writing about 'Kathleen's Modest Proposal' that was outlined here two weeks ago.

She proposed that the club 'secretary' make up a list of the real currentphoto: interior la corona and future members of the Café Metropole Club; to be circulated to all members who agree to be on it along with their email addresses.

In the interest of your personal privacy, I will be sending you a request for your agreement to allow your name and email address to be on this list. This list will only be available to 'real' members who have been present at a club meeting in Paris.

The café had few customers inside, and a couple outside, basking in the sunlight.

'Virtual' members, I'm sorry to say, will not be allowed on the list until they have become 'real' members by attending a club meeting in Paris.

There is one tiny problem. Some real members either did not write their email addresses clearly in the Member's booklet when they signed in, or they failed to include any email address at all. If you think you fall into either case, just drop me a note so I can correct or add your email address to the list.

A fair number of real members have also spontaneously written, giving their permission to be on the list. In order to keep the privacy aspects locked up as tightly as possible, you will be included in the 'official' mailing requesting your agreement.

I know all of this is redundant and I am repeating the same thing over and over, but it is your privacy that is at stake here.

I do not want to include a boilerplate official 'privacy statement' in every bit of future correspondence. Something like this will be included once, in the initial request for your permission. You should keep your copy of this in some safe place, like a bank vault, for the possible day when you decide to sue me.

Likewise, I will keep your 'permission' in some safe place, like a handy empty coffee can, as insurance against possible suits.

This is a sample of how your listing will appear:

Ric Erickson - - Paris, France - attended the Café Metropole Club meeting in Paris on Thursday, 14. October 1999 - (

The listing will contain nothing about what you ate or drank - or how much - during a club meeting. It won't mention anything like, "Paris has ugly dirt!" or other odd comments members seem prone to make. No ages, no colors of eyes, no distinguishing marks or tatoos. No ranks and no serial numbers.

Nothing Happened During the Club's Last Meeting

If you want to know how Hamburg got to be 'City of the Week' - in the State of Hamburg - last Thursday, you can read the unofficial account of last Thursday's weekly Club meeting - even if you have already read it. Hit the hyperlink lightly to see what happened.

If you do take the trouble to read the 'report' please don't write to ask me why I did not run a photo of the club's waiter, Patrick. I would have, but his wheels were spinning pretty badly from having no members to serve, and it would not be fair to show this.

The Café Metropole Club Membership Card

Your exclusive club in Paris has a 'virtual' membership card in color because it is vitally important for potential members to have some tangible evidence of membership, for the period in which they are 'virtual' members.

If you have signed the 'Members booklet' in person at a weekly meeting of the Café Metropole Club in the café La Corona, it is no longer vitally necessary to have a membership card, in color or otherwise. Howeverphoto: virtual membership card it is recommended because it is a somewhat rare item - even though it is free - and not every Hans der Ganze and Lulu La Forge has one.

The only tangible thing of any kind about the club is this card, and it almost isn't real. When it was first displayed here, I expected that aspiring members would simply clip it off their screens. Other members, who may have tried this, have told me this tends to ruin monitors.

You can come to the club meetings without this card. Other members do it all the time. Let me just point out that the possession of the membership card is not at all obligatory or necessary, unless you are a habitual collector of rare and intangible items.

If you want to carry the membership card around with you - perhaps to prove that you belong to an exclusive* club in Paris - you will need to make a print of it. Carrying the card on your person 'virtually' will not work.

However, 'virtual' membership is not only permitted, but encouraged - no one is excluded from membership by failure to be in Paris. The ritual for becoming a member in the privacy of your own home is simple:- Just repeat "I am a member" three times, while twirling your left hand around in the vicinity of your right elbow.

*'Exclusive' in this sense means that it is the only Café Metropole Club in Paris that accepts all sorts of people as members. Any other virtual Café Metropole Clubs in Paris that claim to be real are virtual and should not be confused by the 'real' virtual one.

The Whole History of the Café Metropole Club

With its 15th meeting behind it, the 'Whole History' of the Café Metropole Club has long ceased to exist. Extremely ancient versions of its 'History' do remain online - written in illegible sanskrit - somewhere in 'All Past Issues,' where they are now covered with mouldy server-worms.

The Café Metropole Club Is Good-Value For You

Your 'Club' is outstanding value for what it costs even though it has no actual real, pretended or 'virtual' benefits, except for being absolutely free.

Its single purpose is to offer an opportunity for the readers of Metropole to meet its 'Ed' and each other at its weekly meetings - or see him quietly reading Le Parisien, if you decide to just peek in the window of the club's café.

Unimportant PR Information

The next meeting of the Café Metropole Club will be on Thursday, 3. February, in Paris. The club's 'report' for this meeting will be put online as usual at its regular time, which may still be Thursday in your time zone.

For some months now I have been saying that the reading the club's online magazine, 'Metropole Paris' is not necessary. This really only applies to last Monday's edition, which was not, because of 'Ed' taking a week off.

Be darn sure to read every page of Metropole every Monday and especially next Thursday for the latest news of the club's latest meeting.

photo: location map, la coronaPractical Information

Here 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.

The club's meetings are held at the far end of the La Corona's big 'salle,' where there is little danger of being run over by the traffic on the Quai du Louvre which always heavy around the club's closing time of 17:00.

La Corona also has a small 'salle' beside the bar. There is a small terrace on the Rue de l'Amiral Coligny side, which faces the Louvre to the west; and a big terrace on the Quai de Louvre side, which faces south and the Seine. The Club does not have its meetings in either 'small' part.

If you are unfamiliar with cafés, bars or troquets in Paris, La Corona's has a stainless steel top and a sleek beer dispensing thingee with six nozzles, not all of which are for beer. Near the cash register, you might see a little wire stand holding hard-boiled eggs, but it is often elsewhere. Go left past the six nozzles thing and turn right to find the 'club.'

If this no-fault scheme fails, simply ask anybody standing behind the bar - in any language that suits you - 'Où est le club, s'il vous plaît?' ['Club' continues to be pronounced 'cloob.']

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

Send email concerning the
contents to: Ric Erickson, Editor.
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