...Continued from page 1

Then Frank proposed Greensburg, Pennsylvania as the City of the Week because his mom just moved there from Florida, to live in a country–club–like... yeah, well. He said, "My mom is doing a non–Thomas Wolfe." I wonder if he is a club member too. Isn't there more than one Thomas Wolfe?

Then we learned that Frank's favorite royals are the Norwegian ones. They met in a beer garden and it was love at first sight. Ramona agreed and slipped in a juicy detail or two. I never knew there were Norwegian royals. I don't read those free magazines at the barber's.

photo, 120 roll film A roll of 120 film –
rare, rare rare!

Sweden is having a tough winter Frank told us. Today's wind will do no good up there because the trees are supposed to be cemented to the frozen ground by permafrost but it didn't happen yet. And the long winter nights are very gloomy because there is no snow to reflect the Northern Lights or anything else. Folks aren't running their sleds, they aren't mushing around in the tundra and the ice fishing season is shot to hell. Swedes are furious he said.

Ramona wants to know if the French taxman is chasing her on account of a TV she had in the 90s. Then the café's patron Monsieur Naudan came up and passed around a New Years handshake. This can happen any time until June but before the end of January is best.

After some discussion we all trooped out – except Monsieur Naudan – to the café's terrace for the Group Photo of the Week. We tried for the bikini–effect. This is like for the summer catalogues that are photographed during the winter. To prove how bikini–like it seemed Frank took off his shoes. The wind was whipping past with 80 kph gusts.

A very quick 22 shots later and we were back inside, paying bills, packing bags, testing a new pen from Ramona – it could double a a championship dart – and Frank was grousing about the Soldes d'Hiver because a lot of shop windows are covered with sales signs instead of showing off the threads decked on mannequins.

At first I misunderstood and told Frank that the shops selling mannequins are up in the 3rd arrondissement east of Sébastopol. That wasn't the idea at all. Instead Frank was really in town to photograph snowy scenes in the Jardin du Luxembourg. He's shooting four gardens in Europe.

photo, iron teapot of the weekWeightlifter's teapot.

He has also chosen one in Germany and another in Italy, but if anybody has a suggestion for one more he will appreciate it. He is looking for a sort of Zen garden, one with a serene Japanese feeling.

As for the mannequins, when I asked why, he said, "They are people I'd like to know." Ramona had a handle on it too. She turned on her camera and showed me a tiny photo of a mannequin lounging in a shop window somewhere in Paris. All dressed, wearing a suit. Didn't even look kinky.

About the Café Metropole Club

Suspend your disbelief because this is an ordinary club meeting's report. It's like a six–pack of true life if you otherwise live the life of TV. Twist an eyeball around the dubious outline of what we might have been doing here, to be found as usual on the About the Café Metropole Club Webpage, containing its melodious words, redolent photos and lip–smacking other good stuff reeking of fragrant garlic. And ever and forever, more better frites.

graphic, club location map

What About this Stuff?

Another spontaneous club meeting, totally unrehearsed, will begin at 15:00 next Thursday and continue until 17:00 no less. The coming meeting will be on Thursday – exactly – 25. January 2007. These times resemble 3 pm to 5 pm around other places but these meetings are held around here. Whatever you say might be truly appreciated by the other members present if they are listening, and sometimes they are, but not always – and if it should by freak chance be recorded here.* All your other, largely true, stories are welcome too.

Caution – if you have a personal need to remain unfindable via the Web, be sure to inform the club's secretary that you prefer to be 404 – not found by Web search engines before becoming found. Not becoming a club member is one sure way to stay unfound.

*The above paragraphs are relatively unchanged since last week because of the totally serious situation concerning our lack of a winter climate. Without winter how will we appreciate summer? Remember – South Africa has the same time zone!

The café's location is:

Café–Tabac La Corona
2. Rue de l'Amiral de Coligny – or – 30. Quai du Louvre
Paris 1. Métro: Louvre–Rivoli, Pont–Neuf or Châtelet.
Every Thursday, from 15:00 to 17:00.
Next club meeting on Thursday, 25. January.

A bientôt à Paris
signature, regards, ric

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