The Only 365th Meeting

photo, view from club's cafe, blazing sunbeams March 1st's blazing sunbeams illuminate today's meeting.

A Group Too Loose to Snap

by Ric Erickson

Paris:– Thursday, 1. March:–  After some weeks of seeing the temperature rise from daily highs of 12 degrees to about 15, now we are having to put up with days when it barely gets above 12 degrees. I think I can see 9 or worse on the horizon.

On top of it, it has decided to rain. Officially the drought afflicting all of France isn't afflicting Paris. Many residents are off in the Alps enjoying the price of low snow or skiing around on gravel in some places in the Pyrenees but right here we are not short, or gravely, because we are in an official no–snow zone. We are permitted to walk around here not wearing crash helmets.

For that is the new scheme to save the recklessly mountaineering folks. Wear a crash helmet at all times to protect yourself from everything, except avalanches – which are shortly to become frequent on account of global warming.

photo, cafe of the week

Around here avalanches fall in the form of rain. And, as near as I could make out from tonight's TV–weather news forecast, this what we can expect – although the good Valerie Alexandre neglected to mention anything about Saturday or Sunday. As second–rate as the Web is, I looked it up for you.

Friday's snow alert, in black and white, is not for around here. We are to have winds from the southwest of maybe 70 kph, very covered skies, some rain for sure, and a mediocre high of 12 degrees. This is a durable situation that will repeat itself for Saturday and Sunday. Why then, did the good Valerie not say so? Is she shy? Is this weather embarrassing? We have had worse, more boring.

The One, the Only, the 365th Report

Because of the celebrity nature of today's club meeting I put on a nice new shirt over a fairly new t–shirt for the occasion. I put on my fairly new coat and added my fairly new scarf, the whole ensemble tastefully color–coordinated, except for my jeans, which are somewhat antique without having been artificially aged artistically by the manufacturer. Spiffy for a change, I was.

photo, josef and fashion press card, photographerFashion needs Josef more than the club.

To clip a long story at the knees and get this report on the road, so to speak, I rode the métro pretty much like usual and walked the rest of the way more or less like usual, took the poster photos like always, and got to the club's café with a minimum of fuss – such as the casual lovelies asking me to take photos of their boyfriends with the Tour Eiffel in the distant background.

At the café the Waiter of the Week, appropriately Patrick, greeted me. In return I greeted him and then we fell to sulking. The café's grande salle was nearly empty, with nary an Italian.

I took out today's Le Parisien and read it from front to back. We have been non smoking in France for a month now and our hair hasn't fallen out yet. The city is installing new used bottle depots. Just think – in the future what you see on the surface will be a mere fraction of the empty waste bottles you don't see underground!

For some reason member Josef Schomburg did not arrive before I finished reading about the 1944 German movie I am not watching on Arte–TV tonight. In fact it was hardly necessary for me to stop because he said he was between two fashion shoots – between the Carousel and the Beaux Arts. He said he was working very hard, until 2 in the morning, etc., and then he was off like Flashman.

photo, einar thinksEinar contemplates club life.

So I read how PSG still has its honor after losing to Sochaux – where? what? – last night in the ultra–important run up to the Coupe de France. Apparently the Paris football team will now be free to concentrate on the championship. Of what?

This is what happens when I don't read the paper frequently and with concentration. Luckily before I could lament too much member Einar Moos arrived, sat down, ordered a drink, adjusted his hat and became comfortable. I said, "Take a seat."

Einar is having a hard wintr. Besides what has happened to him he gives other folks who are having hard winters, hydrotherapy. He said he treats people in swimming pools, shows them how to put their heads in the water. When his own psychotherapist, Doctor Cannelloni, charged him 70€, Einar told him to jump in the pool. Actually, I have to change the names and details, because this is confidential stuff about professional matters, and I have a report to write anyhow.

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