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If my memory serves this carbonara six was just as good as carbonara five and four before it. There's no use in fallingphoto, cheese plate in love with any of these carbonaras because the next one, seven, won't be exactly like the first six. And, according to Dennis, no use looking for it at the local pizzeria unless it is in Naples, and maybe not even every place there.

My Sunday cheese plate.

Then we sat around eating fruit and cheese and talking literature and theatre, and even a bit of movies, and the Marx Brothers of course, but not much. All the windows were open and the plants in pots by the windows kept on growing making hardly a sound and the music machine played some singer everybody knew but nobody could pin a name to.

Soldes d'Ete Now – The summer sales will continue until about Saturday, 23. July or maybe longer. Rio de Bastille IV – on Wednesday, 13 July, is the eve of 'Bastille Day' and the star guest at big fête at the Bastille will be Gilberto Gil, Brazil's musical ambassador and current Minister of Culture.

Headline of the Week

The news Parisians were all waiting for showed up as a Le Parisien headline of the week last Friday. 'Vacances – Spécial départs' is probably identical to last year's on the same date, but the paper persisted with advice about how to wait for a train at a station, or a plane at an airport, or wait until somebody packs the car and finds a map showing the way to the first tollbooth on the autoroute.

And, assuming that there is a certain distraction in the air because of these grand departures, the paper also chose the same edition for telling its readers all about the traditional July price hikes. Okay! So you were in the car and you missed them, but the paper also has the schedule of the summer roadworks around Paris, and maybe you are now stuck in one of these roadblocks. Bon voyage!

The Latest Café Metropole Club 'Report'

Last Thursday's club meeting report headline was based entirely on the order, 'Buy this Fishing Rod!.' As this was the catch–phrase of a European–style joke, it had nothing to do with fishing, but there was aphoto, ric, schnapps, foto d carlson fishing rod and it still exists, far from Europe.

The weekly Thursday meeting of the Café Metropole Club will be this coming Thursday again, as regular as a calendar. The Saint's 'Day of the Week' will be Sainte–Amandine. This 'Saint of the Week' was born in Belgium, became a Franciscan nun and was very happy as a missionary in China until becoming a martyr.

What did I think? I thought it was a hard baguette of course! Photo: Doug Carlson

Somewhat more inane notions about the club can be found on the 'About the Club' page should you happen to glance that way. The slick design of the club membership card on the page looks as edgy as a membership card as any laundry ticket, but it isn't. Absolutely gratis, the club membership itself is pretty virtual, virtually cheap, all without actually being anything expensive.

This Was Metropole One Year Ago

Issue 9.28 – 5. July 2004 – the issue had Café Metropole' to open, featuring the incredible, 'the Washing of Montmartre.' The Au Bistro column's headline was 'Then I Left Early, Rock Turns 50.' The Scène columns were two repeats. Laurel Avery was on hand with 'Paris Life No 47 – 'In a Dead Faint.' The update for the 8. July meeting of the Café Metropole Club was called the 'Talk of the Tour' report. Therephoto, sign, pont neuf were four mildly normal 'Posters of the Week' and Ric's weekly cartoon was direct from the recycle world with the caption, "It's the same!"

This Was Metropole Two Years Ago

Issue 8.28 – 7. July 2003 – this week's Café Metropole column was ultra cool with, 'More Better Paris Plage.' The Au Bistro column shorted crime news in favor of 'Yet Another Six–Word 'News' Report.' The 'Feature of the Week' was titled 'Gone To the Dogs, for Lovers Only.' There were new Scène columns rather than cheap repeats. The report for the Café Metropole Club meeting on 10. July was headlined by the note–taker as the 'Osaka 'City of the Week' report. There were four hardly super 'Posters of the Week' and Ric's Cartoon of the Week was more folksie than a week earlier, with "Not Going to Norway!"

Coming Comedy Hour

For the 18th time almost in a row, this is not about some musty old saint, but instead is a fake 'Quote of the Week.' Sir Humphrey, reciting a TV script from Yes, Minister, said, "We tried to break it up from the outside, but that wouldn't work. Now that we're inside we can make a complete pig's breakfast of the whole thing – set the Germans against the French, the French against the Italians, the Italians against the Dutch. The Foreign Office is terribly pleased, it's just like old times."

If the Present Is Any Indication

Sitting around in the sunshine in Kaliningrad the other day Jacques Chirac was sharing a couplephoto, sign, soldes, summer sales of nips with Vladimir Putin and Gerhard Schröder. Gerhard suggested the Russians and French get together and put on the Olympics together. "Sure wa can do it," Jacques said, "If Moscow wins." "That's how the French are," Gerhard said, "Always ready to compromise with my money." "I'll take the money," Jacques said, "Wherever I find it."

A Big Birthday

Today is the anniversary of the declaration of independence in the United States. In a meetingphoto, sign, flag, united states the Second Continental Congress resolved that Britain had declared war on its colonies. After creating a 'Continental Army' the congress sent an 'Olive Branch' petition to the crown, but George III refused to read it. In defiance American ports were reopened. Then on this date the congress adopted the Declaration of Independence. A little over six years later Britain recognized the declaration and the event is celebrated today with grilled beef and firecrackers, where legal, but not in Britain.

Advanced Patapsphysics

It was on this date in 1883 that little Rube Goldberg was born and destined to grow up as a cartoonist famous for designing wonderful but complex machines that do something simple in a very indirect and complex way, closely akin to anticipatory patapsphysics, which means with suspense. Lest you think Rube was wacky, please remember that he received a Pulitzer Prize for political cartooning in 1948.

Other, 'Interesting Dates of the Week'

There are only 180 days left of this year, which means this year is half over almost before you know it. This is exactly the same number of 'days left,' as at this time in the year 1807 when Giuseppe Garibaldi was born in Nice. This is completely unconnected to the fact that this year has used up 185 days, the same number that 1826 had when John Adams and Thomas Jefferson, both former presidents, died, with two different ages.
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