...Continued from page 1

Frank's entry is so astonishing that I get him to repeat it - twice. He's a bit winded and doesn't understand that the club's camera is too slow-witted to capture him lurching towards the club's table.

On seeing the photos - later - I am fairly surprised that not one of them is in focus, in spite of all the re-trys.

The only possible explanation for this is Frank's being a professor of photography at the university up there - and all of his students are watching this space to see Frank in focus in Paris. Maybe he'll come back next week when the camera is in a better mood.

Frank is also unusual because he came to a club meeting in 1999, about six months before the clubphoto: club cocktails officially started. At the time, it was taking avoiding strikes to an extreme - and today's adventures are obviously a 'pay-back' for trying to beat the system.

Cocktail time at the club involves different-sized pots, as usual.

While Frank is going through his suitcase to try and find the stuff about his expo in Le Mans called 'Le 'Moi' de la Photographie,' I quietly switch the 'City of the Week' from Hoboken to Uppsala to make up for all the 'adventures' he's been having.

About the striped underwear that he finds instead of the expo stuff he says, "Could be worse, could be green." He does not find the expo details, so all we know is that Frank's show is at the Palais du Culture in Le Mans, starting tomorrow.

By now it is somewhat after 17:00 and Marilyn and Charles have left. Frank is starving and orders one of La Corona's hot dogs from Patrick.

Since it is after my lunchtime too, I order a croque-monsieur and ask Patrick to ask the cook to put mustard in it. Patrick saysphoto: real frank, real unfocused he will give me a mustard pot, but I say it will be too late by then - I want the mustard on the inside.

Frank takes three strikes and the camera is out - of focus. An unphotographic score.

In France this is 'not done' but I am either a local hero or an 'urban legend' in the Café La Corona and the staff tries to humor me sometimes.

While Frank hacks away at his contraption of a hot dog, I discover my croque-monsieur to be nicely mustarded. This is on the side I first bite.

At the other end of it, there is at least a whole pot-load of ultra-hot Dijon-style mustard filling it. It makes my eyes water and Frank leads me to the métro, which is not on strike.

Update: While writing this with watering eyes, Frank gave his suitcase - 'Of the Week'!' - another toss and emailed me the Web address for his expo. It's been added in above where it says 'Le 'Moi' de la Photographie.'

The 'About the Café Metropole Club' Page

Traditional and 'unofficial' former club 'rules' concerning your Café Metropole Paris Club - as opposed a shake-and-bake 'report' like this one - can be found on the 'About the Café Metropole Club page,' which is about your club and has a link on each issue's 'home' page, in case you forget to hit the one here.

Date, Time and Location of Next Meeting

Take a look at the 'about the club' stuff if you have time. You should read the following about the next Café Metropole Club meeting - it will be held on Thursday, 5.photo: club food feast April, which is a week from now, just like every other Thursday of the year.

If you are in Paris or not it will be Sainte-Irène's' Day. The following Friday will be just another ordinary Saint-Marcellin's day unlike it was last year when it was on Thursday.

Today's meeting ends with a regular feast - of mustard.

The café La Corona meeting place will be open as it is all the time well as every Thursday. Your club's meeting time will be from 15:00 to 17:00 in Europe's Central European Time Zone - 'CET' for short and not 'ANEI' - and elsewhere known as 3 pm to 5 pm otherwise.

The club's secretary, which is normally myself in person, will be laboriously writing some 'report' notes during the coming meeting, but do not pay any attention to this because it is pretty harmless because it is done by hand.

Dream up a new 'Quote of the Week' or bring your own new 'City of the Week,' or even any other 'Thing of the Week,' if you want to share it, them, with other members - and readers.

The café's location is:

Café-Tabac La Corona
2. Rue de l'Amiral Coligny - or - 30. Quai du Louvre
Paris 1. Métro: Pont-Neuf or Châtelet.

A bientôt à Paris,
signature, regards, ric

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