The Politics of Orangina

photo: being sworn in, olympia fields

'Orangina' politics pays off as Al gets sworn in.

Pronouncing 'Bourbonnais'

Email from Al Riley. Sent via the Internet: Friday, 8. June 2001:-


It is with a sense of urgency that I forward the URL for the news page from CNN. Orangina, both the butt of jokes and a favored non-alcoholic drink of the Café Metropole Club is being purchased by the UK's Cadbury! Does that mean that subsequent club humor involving this drink must take on a British flavor? Pun intended.

Speaking of politics and Orangina, thephoto: al riley, at club meet 608 photo is of me getting sworn in for my third - and hopefully last term as Trustee, or Alderman - on the City Council in Olympia Fields, Illinois. Some of us never learn.

Olympia Fields, Illinois, is famous for its' world-renowned country club which will host the U.S. Open in 2003. Being an elected official, I can go any time I want. Not being a millionaire, sadly, I cannot join.

Al Riley contemplates the responsibilities of Café Metropole Club membership in Paris.

The election was on April 9th, and because it was a non-partisan election, I ran on a platform of Orangina and pétanque boules for every man, woman and child in town.

After piquing the interest of the voters, I was put over the top by recommending provisional Café Metropole Club membership to residents who couldn't get to Paris, but who have been to Bourbonnais - a semi-rural community 30 miles from here. Hey, it has a French name, and I needed the votes!

Hope all is well with you and the Club. Good luck to Charles in 'Joisey.'


PS - By the way, those folks down there call it 'ber-BONE-ass' and I'm not kidding.


'Outs' and 'Ins'

Bonjour Al -

Sunday, 10. June 2001:- I'm afraid Orangina is now 'out' here even if it got you 'in' there. While it was silly enough before, once the Brits set their ultra tweedle-dee tweedle-dum Anglo-Saxon 'humor' to its ads, they will be insufferable.

Last summer the semi-official word from Orangina France was that Metropole's readers and members are far too sophisticated to drink the club's favorite soft drink, so they declined to sponsor either the magazine or the club.

They said, "Only kids drink our stuff."

Before I could say - prove even! - that perfectly responsible Café Metropole Club members - and their kids! - do drink Orangina, my phone card expired just before everybody who was working in France quit for the weekend.

The Pernod-Ricard group thought it had sold Orangina to Coca-Cola several years ago for lots of billions of dollars. The catch in the fly was thatphoto: orangina Orangina bottles Pepsi in France and it seemed unlikely the new owners would want to keep on doing this.

Following Euro-rules concerning unfair competition concerning bottling plants, the French government finally quashed the deal after thinking it over slowly for almost three years.

Sad to say, Orangina no longer has a chance to sponsor the club and famous places like Bourbonnais, Illinois - a favored outdoor destination of Al's voters from Olympia Fields.

Oddly, at about this very point in time - not last year, these days - Paul Ricard's expo-gallery in Paris has started sending me regular press notes about its expos. I'm not sure whether this means I am supposed to start plugging its rum or its pastis, or it is a subtle hint not to tell Cadbury-Schweppes that club members drink Orangina.

I have checked the abolished so-called 'club rules' and cannot find anything that excludes Olympia Fields residents from becoming provisional club members if they can prove that have actually visited Bourbonnais. They can pronounce it anyway they like too.

On behalf of myself and all club members, congratulations for your electoral victory in Olympia Fields! I hope your constituents enjoy their Orangina and pétanque boules, and do not misuse either.
signature, regards, ric

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