Drizzle On My Head

photo: cafe aux bourgogne

Friday in the Mouffe' - sort of looking for a cheapo
keyboard to write this with.

A Drinkable Metropole

by Ric Erickson

Paris:- Monday, 21. October 2002:- Drizzle on my head woke me up this morning. I have been doing some experimental sleeping with the window open, and it has taken two weeks to find out I will get drizzle on the face if it happens to be raining.

This isn't some new form of weather forecasting, but learning about my new apartment. Now that I know the worst - well, it hasn't snowed yet - I think I should go to a sporting sales outlet and get myself some diver's goggles.

I'll tell you though, drizzle on the face is really living the weather, without actually being homeless and sleeping on some cardboard on the sidewalk. On the other hand, instead of getting goggles, I could rig up some sort of fairy-like roof over my bed, as soon as I get one - to replace the moving cartons I'm sleeping on now.

All of this is a gentle introduction to the coming week's weather. The TV-weather news lady said last nightphoto: rue de rennes, saturday that it is going to be dramatic - especially on the TV-weather map - with a bottomless-pit low the size of an ultra-huge supertanker moving into France from the direction of the warmer part of the mid- Atlantic.

Parisians on Saturday - heedless of a fantasy weather forecast.

Tomorrow it will arrive from the west with a windy bang and when it gets to the centre, it will turn left and blow north, rattling windows from Orléans to my bedroom window.

This will drop more drizzle on Paris, between partly cloudy periods, and the temperatures should go up to 'higher than realistic for this time of year.' For example, I think the radio just said Biarritz - out there on the front line! - is having a high of 26 today. The surfers must be happy.

To go with this week's weather prediction, here's what you should wear - Hawaiian shirts with cotton slacks or dresses with matching umbrellas. You can substitute lighter-weight jeans, because everyone else already has.

And while we're discussing the climate, I want everybody to give a thought to the notion that the jeans plant may be an endangered species - judging by all the people you see here wearing rusty ones.

Last minute update - forget the Hawaiian shirts. The high temperatures were last night's TV-weather news fantasy. Tuesday may be a bit warmer than usual, but nothing coming afterwards will be.

A Drinkable Café Metropoleô

The long-awaited unveiling of the 'Café Metropole Blanc de Blanc' sparkling wine is mentioned in this issue because it is about to be unveiled at long last.

This is the brainchild of long-time Metropole reader, Café Metropole Club member, stroller of Paris streets and professional winemaker, Allan Pangborn.

This scheme to make Metropole drinkable as well as readable is all Allan's doing. The Moonlight Sparkling Wine Cellar LLC was founded by Allan and his wife Paula in 2000, with the intent of making champagne-type wines named 'Café Metropole.'

As such, it will be more serious than the magazine, which will tend to treat it lightly. But it isphoto: cafe deux magots really 'real' and a true 'first' in the Internet publishing business, marrying as it does fine wine to a 'virtual' magazine about Paris - which happens to have a 'real' club for its discerning readers.

Saint-Germain-des-Prés, where you could be seen too, if you ever found a free parking spot.

Besides all the fiddly details still to be worked out, the most perplexing are the ordering and delivery regulations of 50 'United' States. While only 13 of these permit Allan to ship the wine to connoisseurs today, there is a current movement in America to liberalize the situation.

As Allan points out, a part of what you pay for the wine's will come to Metropole Paris and help it to continue online with its weekly edition and its club 'reports.' The way it is going to be, you are going to be able to attend Café Metropole Club meetings, read it and drink it too. Of course, you won't be able to to do any of these where it is not permitted by law.

Café Life
Roméo and Juiliette

The bad thing about my new laundromat is I can't look out my window anymore and see if it is empty. The good thing about the new one is that it is close to the local public library and I can do two things at once by tossing my stuff in a washer and going a block further to get suitable reading material while it twirls around.

When I got back from the library I sat down to spend some quality reading time with a schlock krimi. This was beside a younger guy, who I noticed was reading 'Roméo and Juiliette,' which is a very old family-revenge type krimi written by William Shakespeare.

I hadn't read much more than the copyright page when the scholar turned to me to ask if I had ever read 'Roméo and Juiliette.' I told him I had tried to read 'Macbeth' instead, and it caused me to have mathematics as a major, because I couldn't memorize 465 lines of 'Macbeth.'

Actually, not 'memorizing 465 lines of 'Macbeth' leads to my only memory of 'dreaming of Paris' in the '50s, which was helped by Johnny Walker. Miss Adams said anybody who got into the last year of math with 51 percent wasn't going to get out of it with more than 25 percent.

So with 'Macbeth' sure to be out of the running, I had to pull math out of the hat. This was hard to do with the new-found interest in 'France,' but the government's checkers gave me exactly 50 percent for my effort, which was a 'pass' and proved Miss Adams wrong - not that I set out to do this.

With this in mind - in homage to Miss Adams who wasn't wrong, but I was lucky, I won't touch math today - when the younger scholar asked, I offered my opinion that reading 'Roméo and Juiliette' might be better for his future than worrying about getting fired from the McDonald's at Alésia.

This cheered him up so much, I think he said he was going to try and get a job with the McDonald's at Daguerre. It just goes to show what a little 'Roméo and Juiliette' can do for a person in a laundromat, halfway between Alésia and Daguerre.

The Telephone 'Joe'

Exactly a week after the loud banging on my reinforced steel-framed door full of bank-vault bolt-shafts a week ago, the telephone 'Joe' returned to install a brand-new line in my apartment.

First he checked to see if I had cleared a space for him work in. This had required the reverse of storing away the stuff I'd moved in with, and putting it in piles, and moving the furniture. In the ten days I'd had to get used to my original new setup, I had found I was the wrong way around. So it was also a good excuse to rearrange my space.

Then he went out in the hall and used his magic wand to figure out what all the cable spaghetti was, andphoto: france telecoms raymond whether it was live, hot, or just leftovers from 1929. From what he said, my new wire from somewhere in the hall into my place would be a 2002 model - but eventually it would join me to the world with the building's original 1929 lead wires.

'Should I drill the hole in the wall here?' he wanted to know, using an armor-piercing drill, running off my electricity. Yeah, sure, no measurements - just do it by rule- of-thumb dead-reckoning.

Raymond, my telephone 'Joe,' pulling wires to put me online.

Same thing from the apartment's hall to the living room, after I'd told him the hall's wall was longer than the living room's. BIZZZZitttttt. 'Is it okay?' he yelled.

Continued on page 2...
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