...Continued from page 1

Write today to enquire about details. The exact conditions have not been fixed yet, but they have advanced beyond zero. Your suggestions will be welcome too.

Metropole As 'Shareware'

Some weeks ago, as a first step towards ensuring the continuation of Metropole's publication, I requested that readers and club members voluntarily pay a 'shareware fee.' This is an idea based on paying for software that is created by independent producers. The 'idea' is, if Metropole works for you, then you can pay according to its worth to you, and to ensure that its publication - and development - continues.

So far, response from readers like you has been generous. I am flattered and I think you are wonderful. Many contributors have exceeded the 'price sticker' that I mentioned last week. In reward for this, I will cut out the excessive blah-blah-blah, and get straight to the heart of the matter.

You are not being asked to 'donate' anything to 'Ed.' You are not expected to pay for a subscription forphoto: cafe tables, rain secret-code access to some special part of the magazine either. Metropole remains a single-version magazine with unlimited access for all. The Café Metropole Club remains just as free as it's always been.

'Keeping Metropole flying' is simple. You can add your contributions today by hitting this link to the 'support Metropole' page.

About halfway down the page you will find a link to 'Kagi' - Metropole's 'software retailer.' Hitting this will bring up the page Kagi has created for Metropole. Then add the amount you feel like contributing to support the 'shareware' version of Metropole.

The rest of the procedure is like buying anything else via the Internet, but with one difference. You can voluntarily contribute any amount you feel comfortable with to support Metropole. Whatever it is, you'll get 'Ed's 'thanks' in a return email.

Metropole's 'mailto:' Change

The changed email address for 'Ric,' 'Ed,' and the Café Metropole Club's secretary is ericksonr@wanadoo.fr. If you have noted it in your address book since last June, you have the correct address. If not, all emails sent to me are going into outer space, along with a lot of spam I send there.

Café Metropole Club 'Reports'

Use your cursor to hit this link to have a look at last week's "12 Extra for Getting Wet!" club 'report.' There was another good turnout of members, all of whom stayed for the meeting even if they intended to leave early.

Some minor details concerning the club can all be found gathered on the 'About the Club' page, because there are only 17 of them. The virtual but tattered club membership card on this page is free, so long as you print it yourself. The card is valid forever worldwide, but ultra-valid in Paris.

The next meeting of the Café Metropole Club will be on Thursday, 20. November. The Saint's Day of the Week will be Saint-Edmond, and not Saint-Beaujolais Nouveau day as many expect. If you haven't already started tasting on this day at 00:01, getting to the club on time will allow for plenty more tasting-time because Thursday lasts until 23:59 in Paris.

This Was Metropole One Year Ago

Issue 7.47 - 18. Nov 2002 - The Café Metropole column's headline was 'Café Life' Is Like a Long River.' the 'Au Bistro' column reappeared with 'UMPs Decide UMP Is Best.' Metropole's wine was back with 'A Small Champagne Vocabulary,' by Allan Pangborn. There was a feature about 'Salon 'Paris Photo' and Three Daguerréotypistas.' There was a link to the previous week's Scene column, to 'Noël 2002, - the Not Quite the Full Program.' The club's update on 21. November was dubiously headlined the "Somethingphoto: sign, priere de ne pas stationner devant cette porte Must Be Wrong!" report. There were four jolly new 'Posters of the Week' and Ric's Cartoon was captioned, 'Read the User Manual!'

This Was Metropole Two Years Ago

Issue 6.47 - 19. Nov 2001 - This issue began with the Café Metropole column's 'It's the Crummy Weather Season.' The 'Au Bistro' column was replaced with non-news titled, 'More 'Café Life,' Part 89 - The Buffalo Grass Birthday Party.' The update for the Café Metropole Club's meeting on 22. November was titled the 'Two Astonishing 'Firsts' report. The Scene column's title was 'Circus! Circus! Tango! Horses! Seawater!' There were four more new 'Posters of the Week' and Ric's 'Cartoon of the Week' was captioned, "You Drive Like..." All in all, another skimpy issue was had by all.

The Abyss of the Countdowns

For the formerly regular version of this hugely popular but strangely neglected feature, turn to the last Café page with it, and subtract 28 days from all numbers except the anniversary dates. These have probably expired. If you are still at loose ends, begin up-counting until the date of the next new count-down.

Kangaroos On the Loose

The first report, dated Wednesday, 12. November, about kangaroos living in dangerous conditions in the forest at Rambouillet came by way of Hollywood, with a quote attributed to 'Metro,' one of the free morning dailies in Paris, which got its story from Agence France-Presse. The AFP is a 'pro' news service, and when I tried to verify the kangaroo item I got nowhere because I'm not a subscriber.

Nevertheless, the story was picked up by a Web site named 'Ananova' and by the alert Sydney Morning Herald on the same day - also from the AFP, and then by the Sunday Times of South Africa - on Sunday - which credited The Telegraph in London. One account also credited Le Parisien's Wednesday edition, but it must have been their Yvelines version because I can't find it in the Paris edition.

With all this worldwide coverage it is of only slight importance whether the story is true or not. In essence it goes like this - 30 years ago 30 kangaroos escaped - or were kidnapped - from a nature park near the Rambouillet forest, and they are now thought to number 50. Drivers, speeding through the forest, have been bumping them off.

The 'real' story is that local kangaroo fans have been painting over legitimate road signs with 'Don't Run Over Kangaroo' signs. The mayor of the town of Emancé is quoted in several of the reports as saying, "Kangaroos have been part of our daily life for 20 years." The town of Emancé is three kilometres from the nearest sub-part of the Rambouillet forest, and is separated by several kilometres from the larger,photo: sign, rue de l'odeon main parts, to the north and east.

However, there is a nearby 'Château Sauvage,' just to the east of Emancé. The town's mayor is further quoted as saying the 'kangaroo' signs now allow drivers who have seen them, to admit it without embarrassment - if they happen to de so shaken by the experience that they have to stop for a 'recovery' cognac at a café in Emancé.

What is true is that Emancé is not all that far from the Cadillac Ranch. Linda 'Dancing' Thalman, Metropole's server-lady, has never admitted seeing any kangaroos near there.

Not Many Days Left

The number of days left this year is only 44 - far, far fewer than last week. Very much sooner than we expect we'll be standing elbow to elbow in front of cheerily freezing department store windows gaily illuminated for Christmas. In fact, we can do this now. The only thing lacking is the 'freezing' and maybe a bit of 'cheerily.'

In another short wink of an eye we'll be able to skate on a frozen rink in front of the Hôtel de Ville, or the one in front of the Gare Montparnasse, where the structure is being built and many tanks of Freon are waiting to be turned on or tuned in.
signature, regards, ric

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