BCSiF - 'Best Crêpe Stand in France'

photo: group, heather, tammy, karen

From left, Heather Tammy and Karen. These club
'reports' need an audio portion!

'Acronym of the Week' Is a 'First' Too

Paris:- Thursday, 14. November 2002:- The problem with tomorrow's weather is that France-2 TV is on strike today. Instead of Isabelle parading back and forth against a 'blue-light' background of a weather-animated France, she appeared in a tiny little window at the bottom left of the TV screen.

She also appeared dressed for work, which she never does during regular broadcasts. The whole effect was somewhat sad. What there was of it, she said, beware of the storm warning foreseen for the Côte d'Azur, and some general rain for Paris.

Exceptionally, for Paris there will be no weather for the coming weekend. The next Azores Low - this is a new thing. I thought the Azores only had 'highs.' Anyway, it is sending us very low lows this November, but they are warm ones.

This might mean the weather will be safe for dancing in streets this weekend, if there is any weather. By 'warm,' Isabelle meant about 13 degrees. Rain is, well you know, wet H2O.

I forget what the weather forecast was for today. There was a storm last night after everybody was safely in bed. This caused problems for the ocean racers, doing the Route du Rhum, who are in the Atlantic off the northwest coast of Spain. Their multi-hulled speedboats are falling apart, but the single-hulled ones are getting through.

This afternoon, the sun is popping out and in from a mostly evil-looking sky. It does not occur to me to wear a hat. This is because I got up before eight this morning. This is the day for the bed I ordered four weeks ago.

The last spot of soap is just drying on the bedroom floor when the bedmen 'frappez fort' on my door. It took three hours to take everything outphoto: mark kritz of there so the bed could fill up the room. There isn't going to be any dancing going on in there. Even turning around will be tricky.

Other stuff got washed this morning too. It's amazing how dirty lamps and cabinets can get in 18 years! Practically need a chisel to get the grit off.

'Smiling' Mark Kritz often brings a tie to to club meetings.

I can't wait to try out this bed, which is about the first real bed I've ever bought in my life. Um, the first one that isn't lying directly on the floor or on some so-called adjustable springy things with steel frames. They were cheap steel!

The bedmen say it is guaranteed for five years. Besides its support, it is about as thick as three Banque de France bank vault doors. Only guaranteed five years?

I read the guarantee. It says, 'in order for the guarantee to be valuable, you must turn the mattress over head-to-foot every three days for the first two years.' Something, something, and this is supposed to flatten out 'the bumps.' What bumps? The one I test cat-napped on at the BHV didn't have any 'bumps.'

Well, it is Café Metropole Club time, not siesta time, so I cruise off to the métro and have an uneventful ride down to Châtelet. Châtelet, Rivoli, the Pont Neuf, and the Quai de Seine are uneventful too.

At the café La Corona the wind is clipping along from the east. Nobody is on either terrace. There are number of civilians in the 'grande salle' finishing their lunches. When they leave I think they are all going back to their hotel room beds, for a nice afternoon snooze. Lucky devils!

Before I can begin doodling curtain designs Mark Kritzphoto: karen delaney arrives, dressed up a with a tie. He explains this by saying he had lunch with a 'professor.' He says he has come from the Christian Schad exhibition at the Musée Maillot. This is another famous German artist unknown in Paris. There is some special season for unknown famous German artists in Paris this fall.

Karen Delaney may be smiling too, but who knows?

I ask him if he is leaving and he says 'yes' so I get a photo. He was at last week's meeting too, but for such a short time he didn't get in the meeting's 'report.' He doesn't want to be in this one either, but he does sit still for a moment.

Then he exits stage-left and Karen Delaney from Rochester enters from stage-behind-the-bar. She is miffed when I ask her name. Karen is at club meetings about twice each year. Now I remember the after-club vernissage she went to with Dinny Moyer and Nigel White - um, a year ago, about.

Heather Stimmler-Hall, our fantastic club member number one arrives, not wearing her customary beanie hat. When I activate the camera she says, "Oh no, not again!"

Karen wraps her sweater over her head when I turn the camera her way. They talk about awkward characters they've had the misfortune to cross paths with in Cannes and Perpignan, without specifically mentioning the club's secretary.

Heather doesn't live in a caravan in Antibes anymore. She lives in a little house in Biot. When I pronounce it wrong even though I spell it right, she says I've said it just like all Parisians. The people in Biot pronounce it 'Bee-ott' just to fool people from here.

I think it is because Parisians calls the region PACA for short. It is sort of like the Panama of France, so 'PACA' kind ofphoto: tammy hester suits it. 'PACA' is an acronym for 'Provence-Côte d'Azur-Alps Maritime' or something, maybe with Rhône in it too. It is the only short name for anything in France, except 2CV or CDG. Orly is, well, four-lettered Orly.

As a new householder Heather has some interesting comments to make. Such as, "And then you learn a silly little radiator 'key' costs four euros!" These are essential for letting the air bubbles out of radiators and you have to buy new 'keys' every year. Because you always lose last year's.

At her first meeting, first time in Paris, Tammy Hester smiles a lot.

Heather has a theory that crêpes sold at street stands are a superior form of fastfood. "Cheese and mushroom are good," she says. This is how I learn that an aubergine is an eggplant.

Somewhat unalert from my early morning I do not immediately realize that a lady in a leather coat kind of looking us over, is looking for the 'club.'

Sent the club's way by member Alice Grey, Tammy Hester says she has taken one of Polly Platt's seminars. So has Heather, or she is just about to. Tammy is from Beaufort, South Carolina. She says she has left it forever to start a 'new life' in Santa Monica, but first she is decompressing by being in Paris for the first time in her life.

Beaufort is thus our 'City of the Week.' It would have been Biot but I still can't pronounce it right. Tammy corrects me. She says Beaufort is pronounced 'Beef-ert.' The Beaufort in North Carolina, she helpfully adds, is pronounced 'Beaufort.'

Heather flies to Paris on EasyJet to discover wonderful things like 'Autour d'Un Café' on Sébasto. "If you live here a long time you can forget what a flavored café tastes like," she says.

I guess I have lived here a little too long because I never did know what a flavored café tastes like. I don't even know what such a thing is. I ask her if the place has plain café, like all other cafés in Paris.

Since Heather seems to know everything, Karen asks her how to find the Hemingway bar at the Ritz.photo: patrick "Don't go in the first bar on your left," Heather says with authority, "Go to the little one all the way in the back. It's always empty."

The three ladies agreeably stand up and stand nearly still enough for their 'Group Photo of the Week.' Patrick gets caught for his 'Waiter of the Week' photo too.

Heather says, "Every time I go back my suitcase doubles in weight from window shopping."

During mainly hydraulic meetings, Patrick rolls cutlery in napkins.

We go over to Châtelet where she leads me to the 'Best Crêpe Stand in France!' - hereafter to be known as 'BCSiF' - on the corner of Saint-Denis and Rue des Lombards. She eagerly orders one with a lavish amount of Nutella and a banana in it.

She says nobody knows how to make a proper crêpe in Biot. They don't fold them right, so everything in them leaks out. The last one she had, she gave back. Heather wouldn't be seen dead on the street with a leaky crêpe.

"Down there," she says, "They do know how to make pizza." I guess that's why Nice in German is called 'Nizza.'

A Less Usual Club Meeting than Usual

The next meeting of the Café Metropolephoto: drink of the week Club will be on Thursday, 21. November. Since this is also Beaujolais Nouveau Day be sure to wear something stainless if you intend to attend this meeting.

'A glass nearly full of plain water' is an idiotic caption.

Otherwise, the Saint's Day next Thursday is Présentation de Marie. I know nothing, if not less, about this sainte whatsoever but I doubt if there is anything like a Saint-Beaujolais here although they may be one in Japan next Thursday.

The 'About the Café Metropole Club' Page

By taking a quick look at the page called 'About the Café Metropole Club' you can learn how to become a member forever. However, if you are reading this 'report' about today's club meeting, learning how to become a member might be redundant.

'Club rules' are so nearly nothing that they don't even have 'exceptions.' If you feel ignoring this 'About' page - even though it has been lightly updated - do so. All you really need know is that you can become a member of this online magazine's live, free and real club by simply being at a meeting. If you think this to too easy to be true, it is still fairly easy.

Club's Age Controversy Resolved

Dinny Moyer is right. The club will be having its fifth meeting in its fourth year of existence next week, but it is still only three years old. I have seen the error of my arithmetical ways.

Repeat Christmas Season Note

Tonight, exactly two weeks after Halloween, major Paris department stores turned on their lights and lifted their display window curtains on their decorations, a whole week ago. Many displays will continue until the first weekend in January, after which the Soldes d'Hiver start. Never a dull moment here - but no fireworks on New Years.

When, Who, How, What, Where, Why Not?

Club meetings begin in Paris not before 15:00 on Thursday and continue until 17:00, in Europe's Central European Time Zone - which is 'CET' for short and not 'ZZIZ' - and known elsewhere as 3 pm to 5 pm in other worldwide areas. This is regardless of prevailing 'winter time' which is prevailing.

Please note your name, hometown, and your own email address in the members-onlyphoto: heathers best crepes in paris members' booklet number three. The club's secretary often fails to remember that he forgets to ask new members to do this legibly. For strange hometowns, please use phonetic spellings.

'Joe' says 'gotcha' when Heather asks for extra Nutella in her crêpe.

Come prepared with a new 'Quote of the Week' or propose your hometown as 'City of the Week' or invent any other 'Things of the Week.' True 'firsts' are welcome too. 'No-names' is an option you can also opt for if you prefer to be 'not found' on the Internet. 'No rules' has ceased to be an 'exception' and is now an exceptional 'rule.'

What you say may be greatly appreciated by the other members present, if there are any, and if they are listening - and by all readers of this online magazine, if they read this - if some of it should happen to be written here.

The café's location is:

Café-Tabac La Corona
2. Rue de l'Amiral de Coligny - or - 30. Quai du Louvre
Paris 1. Métro: Louvre-Rivoli, Pont-Neuf or Châtelet.
Every Thursday from 15:00 to 17:00.

A bientôt à Paris
signature, regards, ric

Send email concerning the
contents to: Ric Erickson, Editor.
Metropole Midi © 2014
– unless stated otherwise.
logo, metropole sml midi logo No matter how good it tastes,
there is no such thing
as a free lunch.
Waldo Bini