...Continued from page 1

In other words, all the speeding tickets issued as a result of this radar control, were illegal. But last December, the Paris Police Prefecture decreed a 50 kph speed limit in the Bois de Boulogne and Bois de Vincennes.

The Tour Monparnasse, which is hard to keep out of photos.

I don't think Bagnolet is part of Paris, but if it works for the Bois de Boulogne, the municipality should get the Paris Police Prefecture to issue another decree to clear things up for them. The case in Clichy looks like pure fraud though, unless the cops are identical triplets

PE Instructor Busted For Student Brawl

Two kids in a physical education class, one girl and one boy, were going at it tooth and nail. Since they had recently finished an eight-week judo course, the instructor proposed they settle their differences with a fair winner-take-all round of judo.

The two agreed. First down was out and that was to be the end of the affair. A few seconds later, the young girl was out for the count.

Furious, she kicked her opponent. He tried for a shoulder clench, they fell, and she get a fractured collarbone.

Her version of the story is somewhat different. She said she was being mocked by the boy and the instructor imposed the judo match, knowing the boy had taken judo training for a long time.

So she was annoyed when she lost. When her shoulder didn't heal, her parents laid a charge against the instructor. Police investigated the case, questioning the two adversaries and three other student witnesses.

The instructor was called in for interrogation and placed under investigative arrest - for the night. After a night in the lockup, he was told by an assistant prosecutor that he was to be charged with aiding and abetting violence with intent, to a minor of 15 years.

Thirty of his colleagues at the school went on strike for a week. The 33,000-strong Snep-FSU union of physical education instructors backed him up. A Web site was set up. Petitions are flying around. A demonstration has been called for, in front of the courthouse.

At the Ministry of Education, the affair is considered an 'accident.' The state will pay - the instructor is, in effect, a government employee - for the teacher's defense.

Both the instructor and the girl and her family think things are 'getting exaggerated.' An observer noted that the big mistake may be that the court decided to go for the full-dress trial instead of attempting some form of mediation.

Now the Good News

Le Parisien and its national edition, Aujord'hui, are in the number two place for daily newspapers in France, with 3.4 percent of the readership. Estimated readers are 1.6 million.

The two papers, which are both sold in Paris - essentially one paper with two names - could be characterized as 'popular.' Although in tabloid format, neither paper can be compared in any way to the British popular mass-circulation dailies.

However, France's number one selling paper is the sports daily L'Equipe, with 4.2 percent and about two million readers. This paper owns Le Parisien and Aujord'hui.

My kiosk lady asked me if I followed the racing news, because Le Parisien contains many pages on this subject every day. Apparently, L'Equipe favors football while Le Parisien is the paper with the ponies. Real horse fans get Paris-Turf, but this isn't in the national top-ten.

In third place, the real newspaper Le Monde shows that there is a big following of national and foreign news. Le Figaro follows the Ile-de-France edition of Le Parisien - it's in the top-ten twice - and Libération is a distant sixth.

Former big circulation France Soir is in eighth place with about 440,000 readers, behind the finance paper, Les Echos. As an indication of its 'popular' nature, Le Parisien lists the Communist paper l'Humanité in place number 11 - of the top-ten - right after the Catholic paper, La Croix, which has about 25,000 more readers.

French TV Life

If the actress Béatrice Dalle is on TV, you do not go online for a little virtual Web surfing. You turn on your TV set instead.

Most kids in France get part or all of Wednesdaysphoto: palais chaillot off from school. TV has a rule that no movie films are shown on Wednesdays. Right after the TV-news, France-2 usually shows a TV-film having something to do with school life.

The Palais de Chaillot view from the Tour Eiffel.

One a month, this features an itinerant teacher, played by Gérard Klein, who rides a BMW motorcycle from school to school and gives out lots of common sense. Just like he always wears the same blue shirt - for years now - these little tales are well-made fiction.

The 'Institut' is not on every Wednesday. Last Wednesday, in this common-sense, parents and kids, time slot, Béatrice Dalle played, with a son, a 'mom in trouble.'

It was her first TV role. If you saw 'Night On Earth,' she was the blind taxi passenger. If you saw her in '37o2' then you would think she has been miscast for this Wednesday TV thing.

Well, she died in the end, which the fictions that usually run on Wednesday nights don't allow. She put in a harrowing performance, which you don't see many other nights on TV either.

Her coming movie, 'Everyday,' sounds like vintage Béatrice Dalle. It'll probably never make it to TV. She's way too cool for the little tube.

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