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The House of Re–Runs

photo, trees, leaves, boules,

The every Saturday boules tournament.

Oodles of Blah Blah

by Ric Erickson

Paris:– Monday, 24. October 2005:– I am sitting in front of the TV's big dusty screen with the paper's maps on my knees, pen in hand and uncapped, when Isabelle says, pointing at some trash blotting out Ireland, she says, "This is where the cold front is coming from."

I get ready to write some single–digit numbers. She is standing in front when Tuesday's map comes onscreen, but I can see to her left – out in the Atlantic – that there are red numbers like 60 with arrows pointing from the southwest, meaning winds. She shifts slightly and I see another at Orléans, pointing north and it says 70 kph.

When I get a clear look, the map area for here is very confused, with mixed–up clouds, possibly showers and heaven knows what else. Then she says it will be a bit warmer, with a high of 19 degrees foreseen. What happened to that cold front?

No matter how fast Isabelle talks they aren't overly generous with weather time on TV so she skips on to Wednesday, which looks like a layer cake with thephoto, garbage room icing on top representing clouds full of rain so thick you would wish it were chocolate. Under this, most likely over Paris, there's semi–dense sponge, with sunshine in the southern half of France which doesn't concern us.

For an unexpected visit to a garbage room – see Au Bistro.

Offshore the winds are still batting along at 60 kph, but here the high temperature is supposed to be 21. What happened to that cold front? Then something amazing – on Thursday the whole mess at the top of the country moves to the bottom, and the sun comes out here and the temperature hikes up to an unseasonable 22 degrees. To hell with her cold front. Right or wrong, it's a cute forecast.

Metropole's out–of–house literary and weather scribbler, Météo Jim, over there in a wretched November in Pommeland, provides us today with a forecast for now, then and the near future, outre–Atlantique.

Herman Melville's Chariots of Fire

Golden October has been replaced by Herman Melville's 'damp, drizzly November.' Rain and temperatures around 55 anglograd – 12 €grad – are predicted for greater Pommeland until Tuesday. At that point, chariots of fire are expected to roll through the Pommeland skies accompanied by strips of clouds but they are not expected to turn into furnaces of heat. The high temperatures will be in the upper 50's anglograd – about 14 –15 €grad – and descend into the mid 40's anglograd – 5–6 €grad – at night. The harvest moon, now a memory and only a remnant of its former glory, rises later and later each night. As usual, add about 5 degrees to get the real temperatures.*

*Tardy Disclaimer:– Then again, Wilma could reject both the offerings of la vida loca of Cancun and red Cuba and make a mad dash for southern Florida. Right now in Key West, the annual Halloween festivities are on hold, which is costing the city $5 million a day. After visiting Florida, there is a possibility that Wilma will sail up the East Coast and visit Pommeland.

Disclaimer 2:– All – or part – of the disclaimer could turn out to be wrong. Don't say you saw it here.

Café Life

Here is the situation. I didn't know that Arte–TV would have a Sicilian Mafia movie in Italian on tonight and I just found myself watching it and reading the subtitles, which has kind of left me with less time than usual to write another 1000 words right here and now.

Also I discovered a tiny mistake in last week's home page so I fixed it, but when I went to put it onlinephoto, daguerre cafe – so I wouldn't forget – I found that Metropole was unavailable, completely dead in the water. Ah, this might happen once in a year or less, but it is happening in Paris on a Monday night.

By the time you are reading this it won't be happening of course, and you will hardly care that I was worried about hitting my elastic deadline. But for me it is disturbing. Then I looked at the rest of this page, at last week's three items, and decided to let them run again, good causes all.

This means, if you want, that you can skip down to the ever–popular 'Metropole One Year Ago' to read what you already read one year ago, or if that doesn't seem to be appealing, jump even further down to the usual collection of odd dates, all related as ever to today, but from the deep dark past of true history.

Murder at the Café Corona

For the club's second meeting of its 7th year, mystery writer Cara Black is expected to be on hand to talk about how she came to write her first book, 'Murder in the Marais.' According to Cara it was based on the experiences of a friend's mother during the Occupation.

As many readers probably know Cara is responsible for a considerable crime wave in Paris, having set her private eye Aimée Leduc to catch murderers in the Marais, Sentier, Bastille, Belleville, Montmartre and most recently, in Clichy. Mark your calendars or agendas with this date – Thursday, 27. October and set your watches to 15:00, €times.

Beach Boule Bingo

Metropole partner Philippe of Petanque America wrote last week to let us know that he is organizing the 'first ever' International Petanque Tournament in Miami. This will be Petanque America's second tournament, open this time to all comers. It could be pretty interesting because it will take place on South Beach where folks casually wear next–to–nothing for the climate, which has fewer blizzards than Minnesota or Helsinki.

Tune in to Petanque America Open International for tournament details. To take place in Miami on Saturday and Sunday, 12 and 13. November. And if you haven't got your French boules yet, get a set of Obut pétanque balls from Petanque America today and start practicing.

Trouble in Paradise?

You may have bought your dream château in France, or at least a cute little Louis XIV barn, and now you feel you would rather a simple centrally–heatedapartment by the seaside instead. But your dream has turned to a nightmare as buyers ignore your treasure. Is this your story?

Britain's Channel 4 is producing a new series of their successful 'House Trapped in the Sun' programmes.photo, pont neuf The show's producers are looking for vendors with problem properties to take part in three full–length episodes to be filmed late this year and early in 2006.

Andrew Winter, presenter of 'Selling Houses,' will be in France to assist vendors selected to appear in 'House Trapped in the Sun' with expert tips and advice. The programme, watched by 3 million viewers, has helped sell all featured properties in the past and expects to repeat its success with the new series.

Even if you are not planning to sell, but have problems with bungled electricity or starving termites or damp walls two metres thick, you may be invited to take part in the programme. Participation by state agents is welcome too.

For complete details you can phone 44 (0)1 27 32 24 800 or email housetrapped@ricochet.co.uk The Latest Café Metropole Club 'Report'

Last week's Thursday 'Club Meeting of the Week' was reported as the 'Thurso Colder! & Club Birthday' report. Wephoto, marche rue daguerre learned that Thurso in Scotland is colder than Chicago but it wasn't much of a surprise even if we didn't know where it is.

The next Thursday meeting of the Café Metropole Club will be on next Thursday. This is not any old Thursday either because it is the last one of this month. When it's over it'll be over for ever. The 'Saint of the Week' will be Sainte–Emeline. This sainte du mois is much beloved in Champagne and this is since the 12th century. Emeline trained ladies to live simply like Saint–Bernard, near the abbey at Boulancourt near Troyes.

Other equally fascinating facts about the club can be found on the 'About the Club' page if you like reading medium–sized fine print. If not, just forget it. The clumsily dashed–off design of the club membership card looks about as much like a 500 €uro note as a losing Loto ticket. Guaranteed hors d'âge, the totally free club membership is in itself not worth a great deal in the wrong hands but all members have the right hands.

This Was Metropole One Year Ago

Issue 9.43/44 – 18/25. Oct. 2004 – this double issue's Café Life column was titled, 'Free Beef Sunday – Pink TV Arrives at Long Last' and the Café Metropole column had the headline, 'Batten the Hatches.' The Au Bistro column was on another sort of holiday with 'Speak You Globish?' and 'Church Kicks Halloween.' Another Au Bistro column had 'What About Us?' Some sort of feature was titled 'October Rendez–Vous.' The update for the 21. October meeting of the Café Metropole Club was 'Big Noise is 'City of the Week' for a change and the meeting on 28. October came out as the 'What's In a Civet?' report. The Scène columns were, regrettably, reruns. Therephoto, sign, sortie de voiture were six utterly fantastic 'Posters of the Week' and Ric's weekly cartoon was actual with the news caption of, "Protest high gas prices!"

This Was Metropole Two Years Ago

Issue 8.43/44 – 20/27. Oct. 2003 – the double issue's first Café Metropole column featured echos with, 'Help' Echos,' and the other column had 'It's Not a Holiday.' The famous 'Support Metropole' began with, 'Readers Like You Can Support Metropole.' You still can. The 'Feature of the Week' was something headlined 'The Overlooked 4th Birthday,' which was about the club. The original report for the Café Metropole Club meeting on 23. October was highly original with 'The Overlooked 4th Birthday' report. Then on 30. October everybody had the "It's Been 103 Weeks" report. There seems to have been a dismal repeat of one Scène column, with 'From Cocteau to Piaf' mentioned. There were only four ugly 'Posters of the Week' and Ric's Cartoon of the Week again mentioned news of no importance with the caption of, "You are supposed to be on strike today!"

Lightbulb of the Week

For the 32nd time almost in a row, this is not about some musty old saint, but instead is an inspiringphoto, sign, guitares 'Quote of the Week.' Tommy Edison, who might have had a birthday recently, once said, "Genius is one per cent inspiration, ninety–nine per cent perspiration." Now we know why Picasso's canvases smell odd. Next week right here, as a special feature, the 'Birthday Message' will be broadcast in both in French and in Spanish. You will only need to turn up the volume.

If the Past Is Any Indication

Today marks the date in 1957 when Christian Dior became a legend forever. To train for the fashion business he studied diplomacy at Sciences–Po but his family was wiped out in the Crash, so he left Granville and came to Paris to utterly fail at running a gallery featuring no–name hacks such as Pablo Picasso and Jean Cocteau, so he switched to frocks. In 1946, big–time textile magnate Marcel Boussac hired Christianphoto, telephone rose in order to have a minor tax–deduction, but it turned out wrong. Twelve years later Dior had 2000 employees and was selling threads in 15 countries.

Slightly Colorful Pataphysics

It was on this date in 1790 that the assembly, in one of its irrational fits of blind passion, decided to adopt the tricolore as France's official flag because it had three colors, two more than Louis XVI's white flag. The new flag was based on a popular sort of button worn by Parisian revolution fans since 1789, called the cocarde. The red and blue colors are city of Paris' and the white, which was kept just in case, was and is royal.

Faits Divers iV

In 1260 on this date the cathedral at Chartres was dedicated with the help of Louis IX, which handily set the stage for UNESCO to declare it a World Heritage Site. On the same date in 1599 Henri IV decided to quit being the husband of his first wife, Marguerite de Valois, who was called La Reine Margot for short. Henri III chased her away from court and a little while later Henri IV married Marie de Médicis and they had four kids, one of whom turned out to be Louis XIII. This has nothing whateverphoto, pumpkin, halloween to do with the founding of the United Nations today, in 1945, or with the Toronto Blue Jays winning the very first 'World' Series in the history of baseball, in 1992.

Odd and Unlikely Dates of the Week

There are only 68 days left of this year, which means this year has about 60 Christmas shopping days left. This is exactly the same number of 'days left,' as at this time in the year 1901 when Anna Edson Taylor rode over the Niagara Falls in a barrel trying for a new 'first,' and succeeded, only to return to her humdrum life as a widow. This is completely unconnected to the fact that this year has used up 297 days, the same number that 1360 had when the Treaty of Brétigny was ratified at Calais, thus ending part one of the Hundred Years War, which continued for quite some time before getting this name..
signature, regards, ric

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