...Continued from page 1

The prizes - 'an exclusive and unique Paris souvenir - made by the millions' - will be going to the four lucky winners with the aid of the Poste Française. Since a prize such as this should be a surprise even if it is 'made by the millions,' I will hold off running a photo of it until next week, when the winners should have received theirs.

Editorial Correction

Last week I mentioned Dana Shaw writing to congratulate Metropole for having readers all over the world. This was in connection with readers - generally south of the equator - who have written from email addresses that don't accept replies from Paris.

Two Metropole readers took the extreme measure of flying 26 hours to Paris, to attend last Thursday'sphoto: film poster, musee annees 30Café Metropole Club meeting. They confirmed there are no known kangaroos in South Africa.

One of the film posters in the Musée des Années 30 recalls Boulogne's cinema past.

The readers in South Africa, who are 'uncontactable,' also wrote to say there are no kangaroos in South Africa. Even more astonishing, they claim there are no 'marsupials' there, even though "South Africa and Australia was once part of an ancient land mass called I think Gondwanaland."

Even if I cannot write to Mathilda and Fred Daniel directly, I want to personally thank you for your patience and for taking the trouble to - correctly! - point out all the mistakes I've been making concerning plant and animal life in your part of our world.

0kay, now that I've made my apology, let's all put our memory caches into action to record this vital fact once and for all: There are no kangaroos in South Africa and it is possible there have never been any there.

Café Metropole Club's 27th Session

The 27th weekly meeting - the more-than-six-month mark! - of the 'Café Metropole Club' marked a sudden upsurge in 'real' membership last Thursday which gladdened my heart considerably. You can read about it on last week's 'Club 'Report'' page even if you have already read it once.

I can't remember if the other gibberish 'announcement' I made here last week about 'weekly Metropole fixes' stirred anybody up. But now that I have had time to think it over, I think I should make it clear that I haven't the foggiest notion about whether 'Bulla Bulling, WA' even has a jail for 'fix' offenders.

To all readers in Bulla Bulling, WA - for all other readers, 'WA' stands for Western Australia - who may have been offended that I so casually attributed a 'fix' jail to their lovely town, I plead mistaken geography. To other readers who thought I was spelling Walla Walla, WA wrong, you know that I should know better.

This Was Metropole One Year Ago:

Issue 4.16 - 19. April 1999 - This week's Café Metropole column was headlined: - 'Backpacking Without a Pack.' 'Au Bistro' had 'How To Quit Drinking, In France,' which contained no information useful to anybody. This issue had one lone feature, entitled 'With a Home Onphoto: groupe apollon musagete, musee annees 30 Your Back.' This issue's 'Paris' Scene' had 'Speed-Record Set at Achères.' There were four 'Posters of the Week' as usual and Ric'sCartoon of the Week was captioned 'Restless Visitors.' All I remember was the speed-record part.

Detail from the 'Apollon Musagète' group, by Evariste Jonchère.

This Was Metropole Two Years Ago:

Issue 3.16 - 20. April 1998 - The Café Metropole column was boringly headlined 'In the Middle of the 'Spring' Exhibition Season.' The 'Au Bistro' column was titled 'Cauliflower War Victors Yet to be Named.' Something about anything for a joke. This issue had three whole tiny features, titled 'Hanging Out With the Freak Brothers,' 'High Floor, With 5 Million Franc View' and 'The Big Easter Junk Hunt' by Tracy Turner. There were four 'Posters of the Week' as usual and Ric's Cartoon of the Week was captioned 'Belgian Beer,' and called a 'cartoon-photo,' whatever this may be.

All museum objects©Musée des Années 30, Boulogne-Billancourt
The Metropole Paris Countdown to 31. December 2000:

Here is the 16th issue of the year already and I still haven't received any complaints about Metropole's spanking-new and whiter-than-white, stupendously fabulous, somewhat shopworn count-down. Last week I did something about this situation, but it has changed nothing. Nobody is still complaining about the count-down.

What I did was Metropole's Contest. This resulted in four winners, which is allowed under the 'European Rules' clause. No winners make a dull contest. Anyway, if you are reading this, you've already read about this above.

I see now why some contestants were confused. Last week I wrote, "First one in is the winner!" Even under 'European Rules' it is necessary to say this. If not, then contestants think they have all the time in the world to get their entries in. You may have this 'time,' but I only have 168 hours between issues.

This new countdown will last only 366 days, minus the 108 days already gone. The official reason for doing this is to give the Tour Eiffel a new chance to 'get it right.' This is a re-run for many count-down fans who missed shouting 'Zéro' on Friday, 31. December 1999 when Paris' countdown clock gave up. The 'unofficial' reason for this has been suspended until it's time for another contest.

There are only about 258 days left to go until the 3rd Millennium. For really picky readers, this figure is now correct.
signature, regards, ric

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