Big Jets, HotBlogWeek, Fin

photo, water jets, parc andre citroen A popular and safe freebie for kids.

Writes, Writes, Scrams

by Ric Erickson

Paris:– Monday, 31. July:–  Tonight's TV–weather news forecast was laced with words like normal and average for the time of year so it is hardly worth mentioning. The heatwave seems to be history and we can gather only slight comfort for the high temperature Alert Orange posted for the south–east, for the Riviera and its surrounding countryside.

As it happens there was no Le Parisien available today and thus no colored maps waiting for my penible update, my hand–drawn addition of winds, highs, lows, fronts, backyards, lightening, garlic, rain and fluffy white clouds as cute as baby goats.

photo, resto, aux trois canettes Some restaurants never change.

Tuesday appeared to begin with some sunshine but with a 50 kph breeze puffing east out of the towards – Austria? – well, somewhat closer, say the Black Forest. In the afternoon this minor air movement may increase to 60 kph, which means that clouds passing by will obscure the sun at times, to gather around the Rhine but that is not near here. Expect the high to be 23 over Notre Dame and 34 over Nice.

It seems, if I recall correctly, that Wednesday will be much the same – with or without breezes, but with a high of 23 degrees. Same thing for Thursday – variable with sunny periods, northwest winds at 60 kph, but with a high not exceeding some of last week's lows, about 21 degrees. Well, it's August after all. July broke records and enough is enough, especially since everybody has their new fan now.

Pommeland Surrenders Météo Jim

According to Météo Jim, who submitted next week's weather for Pommeland on Friday, he will not be doing August's weather because he is living it. In his own words –

This past week is pretty much like the previous week. The groups La Canicule and HHH have returned but whether it is by popular demand remains open to debate. The following week will see encore performances by the groups just mentioned with temperatures in the mid–to–upper 90's. Their popularity is expected to fade by the end of the week, replaced by the chart topping Lower–to–Mid–80's to bring in the arrival of August.

photo, sign, quebec licence plate, scooter

As July ends, bringing with it the return of Les juilletistes and August appears on the calendars along with the departures of Les aoûtiens, including Ed, Radio Ric and his cousin Radial Ric who works for Michelin, Météo Jim will also be away for a few weeks. He and Mrs. Météo Jim are going to the distant and exotic land of Upper Lesser Hoochikoochistan, whose national motto might be, "If you liked the Inquisition, you love this place!" They have reserved a palatial suite that looks out onto the Snagglefang Mountains, covered in fog, ice, snow, sleet rain or volcanic ash on an average of 359 days a year.

He was going to bring his ever trusty, ever power insatiable electric Bic to flick and report on what he found in that distant paradise, but after finding out that it was a cause of the power outage in Queens and another in Staten Island, he will leave his meteorological duties at home.

Ed's Note:– Amen!

Café Life

Big Jets, HotBlogWeek, Fin

I put the mention of the annual hot weather visit to the water jets in the Parc André Citroën in GoodBlogWeek on Wednesday. That was so long ago that I have had trouble finding it, wondering if it happened, wondering if I did write about it. It was pretty hot that day.

photo, evening at st sulpiceSeeking cool after sunset.

As it turns out it was last Tuesday, right after I finished the last issue. Instead of having my customary Day of Sloth I went riding the boiling métro to the outer reaches of the 15th, to capture the innocent joy of illegal play in Paris' precious dancing water jets. On the equally steamy way back I saw the temperature and melted.

But that didn't stop me from buzzing out to catch up with Uncle Den–Den after his movie night. What was feeling extreme during the day was mere toast under the brown stars in the evening, mostly spent in a café across from the Luxembourg. If you have to be in a hot place there are worse places than Paris.

And that's it. I have nothing more to write. If you are coming to Paris in August the three–ring circus is on and more words will not add to it. To all fans of Metropole, thanks for reading, thanks for your emails, and thanks for coming to club meetings.

photo, water jets Just endless fun in the sun.

Notice of Minor Importance I

Just in from Santa Monica a heads–up from club members Priscilla and Bob alerting all ye who are here that Brian Cousins is appearing in Neil LaBute's three one–act plays that constitute BASH. This starts tomorrow and runs until Thursday, 17. August. Priscilla and Bob write, "We saw and enjoyed it when it played in Los Angeles. His performance is very impressive." In the Salle Vicky Messica, at the Théâtre Les Déchargeurs, 3. Rue des Déchargeurs, Paris 1. Métro: Châtelet. InfoTél.: 01 42 36 00 02. Showtimes Monday to Saturday, at 19:30.

The 'Drinks, Talks, Scrams' Café Metropole Club 'Report'

Last Thursday's Club Meeting of the Week last Thursday handily accomodated two members, the club's secretary, Willy the Bird and a stray pigeon looking for forgotten frites. You can update yourself with the report of this this breezy meeting which was curtly headlined, Drinks, Talks, Scrams. There was little fresh air to go with the drinks but there was the boring repeat of the Slightly–Important Notice, continuing its mindless repetition.

photo, delivery bike, italian deliThe delivery bike of the week.

The next meeting of the Café Metropole Club will be on the first Thursday of September which is the 7th. The 'Saint of the Week,' based on today rather than then, is Saint–Ignacio López de Loyola. Known to friends as Iñigo, he was beatified and canonized on 12. March, 1622, a mere 66 years after death. As well as being today's saint, he is also the patron saint of Guipúzcoa and the Society of Jesus which was founded on Montmartre on 15. August 1534.

The hardly less unlikely legend of the club is on a page of sheer wonder so adroitly called the 'About the Club' page. Test your reasoning facilities with some frivolous facts, by glancing at the club's exclusive, raddled and shabby hand–fashioned membership card before its pending oblivion.

Notice of Minor Importance II

There is no reason why the club's secretary intends to take a holiday this summer except he feels like flying and the way he sees it August is a better month than any other to jettison his formal attire, forsake his light duties and just run crazy rotten wild, like a rolling stone on ballbearings. He has to have a grilled garlic–flavored cheese chipolata sandwich now!

For this reason there will be no meetings of the Café Metropole Club for any of the Thursdays of August:– 3, 10, 17, 24 and 31, none of them! After August the first Thursday in September will be a meeting day. Deftly mark the 7th on your calendar. For a free club noted for rare and unusual 'firsts,' this is another rare something.

photo, sign,blvd du general martial valin

This Was Metropole One Year Ago

This feature continues to be unavailable this week for climatic reasons, partly because 'Ed' is the decider here but mainly because it the heat is off, but the memories of temperature remain.

Café Life Lite 1O1

Lest We Unrecall

Today is the anniversary of the punishment meted out to Daniel Defoe who was sentenced in 1703 to three days in the pillory. This was a neat contraption of wood, supported on a post, with holes for the convict's neck and wrists. Locked into this the condemned were supposed to be scorned with insults and pelted with offal. However, proving that the pen was mighter than the judges, folks tossed flowers at Defoe and drank to his health instead.

photo, sign, access au jets d'eau interdit

Defoe's release from the pillory was followed by residence in Newgate Prison but he was sprung by high nobs in return for becoming a spy. Famous for later writing Robinson Crusoe, Defoe was exceptionaly industrious, and he had some odd ideas. "Wherever God erects a house of prayer the Devil always builds a chapel there – and 'twill be found, upon examination, the latter has the largest congregation," he wrote in 1701, in The True–Born Englishman.

Pataphysical Pluck

There are a mere 153 days left of this year, the same number that 1777 had when Marie–Joseph–Paul–Yves–Roch–Gilbert Du Motier, known as the Marquis de La Fayette became a Major–General in the Continental Army of the United States. Lafayette, as he was known for short, was 19 years old. Orphaned at 13, he joined the French army when he was 14 and he was married at 16 to Marie–Adrienne–Françoise de Noailles. He signed up to fight for the Yankees but Louis XV refused to let him go. The British asked the French to seize Lafayette's boat at Bordeaux – he owned his own ship – and Lafayette was arrested. But he dressed up like a lady and escaped, beat the process servers, and set sail with the British in pursuit. They didn't catch him and the rest is history.

This is totally unconnected to the fact that this year has used up 212 days, the same number that 1803 had when the Swedish inventor John Ericsson was born in Långbanshyttan. After moving to America following disappointments in Britain, he invented some sort of propellor but he was tricked out the credit and pay. So he invented the iron–clad battleship, but often regretted working for the US Navy. A hot–air engine he invented didn't work, but torpedos did. At the end of his career he was working on solar–powered engines, but he was still ahead of his time. He was, as far as I know, no relation.

photo, sign, rue jongkind

Florida News Continues No–Show

On no particular dateI have not been enjoying researching the Saints for this page because the subject is so puzzling. Today I learned that Wikipedia does have a Saints section, containing much more information than I or any reader wants to know. Since the 10th century Catholic saints have been canonized, but even before this process is completed, certain people can be called 'saints.' Then there are Orthodox saints which are less formal but just as real. In fact they may not be 'official' at all and still be saints. Which I suppose means that we are all saints of a sort, somewhat along the lines of Daniel Defoe's assertion about chapels.

In a Class of His Own

This date may be remembered, by some, as the birthday of Milton Friedman, a well–known philosopher of economics. Most famous for, "I am in favor of cutting taxes under any circumstances and for any excuse, for any reason, whenever it's possible", Milton also advocated the legalization of drugs and prostitution, and along with 500 other deep thinkers called for discussing the decriminalization of marijuana. They claim that there could be an economic benefit, possibly by taxing dope dealers.

A bientôt à Paris
signature, regards, ric

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