...Continued from page 1

The owner of the shop was either pretty depressed about this, or kind of excited - maybe we need commies? - and failed to notice that the shop had become full of browsers in search of good-time music - mostly classical, but about half like the selection in Crocojazz.

It was a bit of a squeeze getting out of the place. We retraced our way to the Panthéon, andphoto: hells angles, mc, france went the extra block to the Café de la Mairie of the 5th, which is a calm and hip café for a refreshing pause. On the way out we exchanged some more views with a fellow wearing a sleeveless jacket with 'Hell's Angels, France' displayed on the back.

Monsieur Hell's Angel told us all about all the wonderful places he visited in America - like Nashville.

Then, since it was getting to be a soft evening, we walked up the Rue Saint- Jacques. Dennis wanted me to see the location of one of his favorite jazz clubs - no cover charge! - and it turned out to be a normal café turned into a shrine of all things American, including a wooden replica of one standing outside the door.

This place, the Café Universel, has live music every night except Sunday, for the modest price of a drink. Today the Chapeau Bass Quartet is scheduled to take over the dime-sized bandstand. Dennis said he thinks the place makes money because all the ladies order drinks 'with little umbrellas.'

The bandstand plugs in at 21:30. The owner's wife said the program can be found on the Jazz Valley Web site, which features most of the live music being played in Paris. This is complemented by the all-jazz radio station, 'TSF,' at 89.9 on the FM scale.

Another reason for the Café Universel's popularity is its location near the Boulevard Port-Royal, where there is a Belgian beer and mussels place. A place with copious eats, open as long as I've been in Paris.

On this boulevard when we reached it, there were a great number of police, with all of their considerable anti-riot equipment. They were waiting for the demonstrators we had seen hours earlier going into the Rue Cujas.

On one hand the closed streets were causing traffic chaos without a demonstrator in sight - and on the other, the car-free streets were a lot calmer for the final set of our afternoon stroll around jazz in Paris.

'About' Café Metropoleô Blanc de Blanc

There is no new 'wine news' this week, partly because I am out of town. If all goes well, you can expect some significant new 'news' in Metropole's next issue.

Last week Allan told me that 'Café Metropole Blanc de Blanc' together with 'Seattle Caviar' is going to be on show in Seattle at the 'Taste Washington' exhibition, on Sunday, 6. April.

There will be 140 wineries paired with 85 restaurants. The restaurants will create a dish to accompany the wines selected by the wineries. The event takes place from 16:00 to 21:00, with different entry charges for 'early entries' or the regular one at 17:30. Tickets are limited to 3000 and it was sold out last year.

The last report about the Café Metropole Blanc de Blanc was about its label and why it is like it is and why Allan likes it. Maybe it will fit on a t-shirt.

Café Metropole Club 'Reports'

Lightly tap this link to last week's 'Is Beverly, New Jersey True?' club meeting report. The meeting itself was calm, cool and collected, and made about as much sense as any meeting, which is reflected by its report.

The coming meeting of the Café Metropole Club will be on Thursday, 13. March. This - 2nd! - Marchphoto: cafe universel, statue liberty meeting finally marks the definitive arrival of all mid-March meetings for this year. The saint's 'Day of the Week' will be Saint- Rodrigue, who is not apparently well-known for much.

Nearly all of the three details concerning the club - actually only the club's address is useful to know - are handily placed on the 'About the Club' page. The virtual membership card may be useful, especially if it is laminated.

The Café Universel's bandstand area - or is it the dancefloor?

Metropole's 'Paris Beano 'List' - to be compiled from members' nominations of their favorite Paris restaurants - if they are willing to share their favorites - is getting a steady stream of responses. Although the 'list' is not long, it still requires the club secretary's boss 'Ed' to do something with it.

This is to be sort of the Café Metropole Club's own guide, suggested exclusively by its hungrier and possibly thirstier members. You should trust your fellow members' taste if you trust your own. And you do, don't you?

This Was Metropole One Year Ago:

Issue 7.11 - 11. March 2002 - This issue began with the Café Metropole column's 'Goofing Off.' Oddly, this is carried over this year. The 'Au Bistro' column failed to appear on account of it. There was one email feature titled 'Club Members' Woes.' The update for the Café Metropole Club meeting on 14. March was called the "We Had a Great Cab Driver!" report. The issue's 'Scene' column's headline was 'Much More of Too Much.' Therephoto: sign, rue liancourt were six new 'Posters of the Week' and Ric's 'Cartoon of the Week' had the caption, 'Labels for the Sponsor.' Sponsor?

This Was Metropole Two Years Ago

Issue 6.11/12 - 12. March 2001 - This week's Café Metropole column was headlined, 'About To Go Missing,' as sort of another announcement of goofing-off. The 'Au Bistro' column's historic title was 'Historic' Win for Left In Paris.' There was a single feature headlined 'The Nearly 'Best' Café.' There were two Café Metropole Club updates for this double issue. The first, on 15. March was the 'First 'Urban Legends' report and the second on 22. March was the "Crawfish Are Fit to Eat" report. The 'Scene' column had no less than 'Two Weeks Worth, No Less.' There were four new 'Posters of the Week' and Ric's Cartoon was captioned "Attention! Fingers!" This week's Photo Page featured 'The Passage des Marais.'

Count-Down Break-Down

Whatever else happens, don't forget that Hector Berlioz will have his 200th anniversary in 277 days. Although the 200th anniversary of the franc was mentioned here last week, this is no longer a cause for celebration.photo: bottle depot

1803 was also the year that France sold Louisiana to the fledgling United States for a measly $15 million. With taxes and interest the total came to $23,213,567.73 - and did not include any territory south of the Red River. This amounted to 4¢ per acre, for a bit of land 43,000 square miles larger than the existing United States.

The 'mysteries' surrounding the dates of the franc's introduction and of the Louisiana Purchase, remain mysteries, and the 'thread' ends here.

The other 'mystery' - raised in the most recent club report - namely 'What is a Beverly, New Jersey?' - has been cleared up by our regular count-down contributor, Jim Auman, who is no longer shovelling much snow because spring may be imminent.

He has just written, "Beverly, New Jersey, does exist. It is a tiny settlement on the banks of the Delaware River, halfway between Trenton and Camden. There are probably more letters in the town's name than there are people in it." In an unrelated note, Jim added that Beverly, New Jersey, has been famous slightly longer than Max Headroom.

The number of days left this year is 296. This is not an excessive length of time until New Years, but still seems to be a long time until summer, which is 'officially' 104 whole days from now. Book for it early.
signature, regards, ric

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