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Gilberto Gil, Brazil's musical ambassador and current Minister of Culture.

Headline of the Week

The news we've all been waiting for showed up as a Le Parisien headline of the week last Thursday. 'Le lundi de Pentecôte travaillé, c'est fini' is too long to be a classic headline, and I haven't got the energy to rewrite it now. This is about the national holiday that the government decided we should work on for free, as a gesture of solidarity with France's old folks.

Yes, this was the day this year when some decided to strike instead of not having a holiday, or decided to play hookey, or decided to be elsewhere – like on a long weekend – and when the bean counters added it up, it didn't amount to a hill of beans. The government committee that looked into it suggested everybody forget the whole idea. Conclusion? It's a good principle, but this is France!

The Latest Café Metropole Club 'Report'

Last Thursday's club meeting report title was based entirely on the headline, 'Honolulu 'First' At Last' With 295 meetings on record and somewhere around 650 unique members from all around the world, it was high time that Honolulu became 'City of the Week' at last.

The weekly Thursday meeting of the Café Metropole Club will be next Thursday yet once more, like clockwork. The Saint's 'Day of the Week' will be Saint–Martial.photo, gay parade, brazil This 'Saint of the Week' was the bishop of Limoges in the third century, which is so long ago that nobody is quite certain why Martial was a saint. Some said, 600 years later, that he really was a secretary or a cousin of Peter, who told him to convert Aquitaine.

Brazilians try to turn parade into carnival.

Vastly more confused notions about the club can be found on the 'About the Club' page should you happen to look at it. The sloppy design of the club membership card on the page looks as little as a membership card as any cinema ticket, but it isn't. Totally free, the club membership itself is pretty virtual, virtually pretty, all without actually being pretty anything much.

This Was Metropole One Year Ago

Issue 9.26/27 – 21/28. June 2004 – this double issue has 'Life' to open, with 'The Gay Parade, Cheap In Paris.' The Café Metropole column a week earlier had the headline, 'Summer Begin Bungled.' The Au Bistro column's title was 'EuroFoot In the Mouth.' The Scène columns were two with the titles, 'Paris Stays Open' and 'Eté – Plage and Pools – Révolution and Libération.' The update for the 1. July meeting of the Café Metropole Club was called 'The Plain Truth' report and the report for 24. June was the 'Open–Pit of the Week'photo, sign, rue cels report. There were six only ordinary 'Posters of the Week' and Ric's weekly cartoon was direct from yesterday with the caption, 'Kazoo Time.'

This Was Metropole Two Years Ago

Issue 8.26 – 23. June 2003 – this week's Café Metropole column was bang–on sportif with, 'Server–Lady Meets Horse.' The Au Bistro column featured crime news with 'José Bové Goes to Jail Suddenly.' The 'Feature of the Week' was titled 'The Fête de la Musique was Full of Sparkles.' There were links to repeat Scène columns rather than updates. The report for the Café Metropole Club meeting on 26. June was headlined by the secretary as the 'Spacy Ice Cream is Warm 'Food of the Week' report. There were four slightly wonderful 'Posters of the Week' and Ric's Cartoon of the Week was extra folksie with, "Don't Smile!"

Existing Evils

For the 17th time almost in a row, this is not about some musty old saint, but instead is aphoto, poster, gai fiertis true 'Quote of the Week' again. Ambrose Bierce, possibly writing instead of speaking, said, "Conservative, n. A statesman enamored of existing evils, as opposed to a Liberal, who wants to replace them with new ones." How times change! These days conservatives think liberals are existing evils.

If the Past Is Any Indication

Today marks the anniversary of the 1954 coup d'etat in Guatemala that saw the overthrow of Jacobo Arbenz Guzmán by a mean military junta acting in favor of the United Fruit Company – it didn't want lands it was not using expropriated and given to peasant farmers. The United States was so grateful for the outcome that it quickly recognized the junta, which of course caused the rise of democracy–loving guerrillas as a counter–force. However, it was the poet Pablo Neruda who coined the phrase 'Banana Republic,' and it stuck.

France Exceptional!

Jacques Chirac, during a solemn ceremony at the Elysée Palace, said that he had passed 'exceptional moments of relaxation' while reading the comic albums by cartoonist Georges Wolinski, a major contributor to popular anti–establishment titles such as 'L'Enragé,' 'Hari Kiri' and 'Charlie–Hebdo.' For his more than 37 years of corrosiveness, irreverence, barb–slinging and bad taste, Wolinski was honored as a Chevalier de la Légion d'Honneur by the president of France today.

Mutiny On the Black Sea

On was on this date in 1905 that sailors,photo, sign, doorknob annoyed with the captain and officers of the cruiser Potemkin because an officer trashed a sailor who dared to complain about rotten grub, in turn trashed the captain and officers and threw them into the Black Sea. The discontent spread to other ships but the repression was terrible, with some sailors finding refuge in Romania. The affair was immortalized in the 1925 film by Sergei Eisenstein.

Other, 'Interesting Dates of the Week'

There are only 187 days left of this year. This is exactly the same number of 'days left,' as at this time in the year 1953 when Joseph Laniel became prime minister of France for the first and last time. This is completely unconnected to the fact that this year has used up 178 days, the same number that 1985 had when Route 66 ceased being an official highway and became a legend, with many European fans.
signature, regards, ric

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