What I Forgot

photo, petit palais, interior The wide–open spaces of the Petit Palais.

Is Left Out

by Ric Erickson

Paris:– Monday, 5. March:–  It stands to reason that if we have the mildest winter since 1950 then the last two weeks of it are likely to be mean and rough just to show us that we aren't going to get off entirely scot–free. So far, a bit worse but not horrible.

Semi–Moderate and Demi–Cool

While France continues to post record warm days, especially in the southern precincts, some days here in the between–north are really pleasant and dry and fairly warm. Each day adds its few extra minutes of sunlight and sometimes finishes off with a gradually setting sun rather than a simple lights–out.

Tuesday may start out grey and offshore winds from the usual direction are going to push rainfall in Brittany to the east, to here, and then there may be rainfall right around here too. Meanwhile, the 100 kph winds will moderate to gentle 60 kph breezes, which will keep the wave of rain on the move towards the east, where it belongs.

The weather map for Wednesday plots the rain as being mainly on the Riviera and the northern slopes of the Pyrenees for a change, possibly on account of the drought. Around here semi–sunny has been predicted – actually it is my interpretation of it – and the high temperature might be 12 degrees, like Tuesday, like Thursday.

photo, wonton wrapped salmonSalmon mousse something.

Pretty much the same is foreseen for Thursday except that the foul patches will be scrunched into smaller areas down south. Around here, because we are good, the day might be calm and semi–sunny and demi–great for an 8th of March, just a week before the Ides, whatever they are.

Counter–Atlantic, where winter has ceased to happen, we are encouraged. Wave our arms and hands, shout hola! and turn to Météo Jim, with the latest... menagerie?

Capricious Animal Crackers

As the season leaves the month of the Groundhog and enters the climes of the Leprechaun, the awakenings of the Easter Bunny and March Madness – the stuporbowls of high school and college basketball – the weather becomes ever more fickle and capricious.

A dry Feeblewary departed and replaced by a rain–soaked March with over 2 a–inches falling in most of Pommeland. Whether this was a lamb or a lion is hard to tell. The temperatures were mild but the wind was blowing and sometimes the rain came down horizontally.

As for the days to come, the Groundhog will revisit the scene with high temperatures in the mid–20s on Tuesday. He will then be forced back into his hole with highs at the end of the week expected to be in the low 50s a–grad. No rain or snow is predicted until it arrives.

photo, dessert, cafe rendez vous A corner café dessert.

A la prochaine , Météo Jim

Timely Reminder

Daylight Saving begins in the United States next weekend, three weeks earlier than usual. There is nothing so unusual with this other than the change being two weeks before we will get around to it over here in the old, funky country. Make your plans accordingly.

Café Life

Summit of Stromboli

When one is really poor the only way to live sanely in Paris is to keep the gaze on the straight and narrow and off the food displays which abound. It's bad enough that delicious smells get through averted eyes, but who knows if memory is true? It could be that roasting chicken smells like a used tire dump if you haven't had one on a plate near you for a couple of years.

Continued... on this week's Au Bistro page.

The Café Metropole Club Crosses the Hump

Last Thursday two club members helped the club's secretary with the 365th meeting, remembered only in retrospect. Many other members, far and wide, many of them, remained absent, more or less as unexpected. On this next Thursday there will be a brand new Café Metropole Club meeting, without fail on Thursday.

photo, salmon baguette Another kind of baguette.

The coming meeting of the Café Metropole Club will be on 8. March, also on Thursday. The Saint of the Day is a somewhat famous one. Welcome Saint–Jean de Dieu, born in 1495 in Portugal. For the internationals he is also known as Juan de Dios or João de Deus. He founded the Brothers Hospitallers of St. John of God and this unit looks after the Pope's medical welfare these days.

Far less legendary, all about the club and its honest truths are on an fat page called, without wit, the About the Club Webpage. Some readers who possess an active notion of English won't fail to glean the few and astonishing facts about it, and should not hesitate to view the club's um–zonked hand–crafted membership card before its renewal, pending now for the last 139 weeks.

This Was Metropole Ten Years Ago

Few other Internet magazines claim to have been online for 11 years, for various undefined reasons. The other important item that was to be here this week has been cancelled. It was actually true. Coming soon is the explanation of Ten Years Later, as soon as I make it up. Don't whine about it later if you don't feel like waiting for it now.

Café Life Légère 90.9

Cheer for Crooks

photo, scappalo, pates Instead of pizza.

The Quote of the Week is boring again this week but at least it's exciting, a situation that has altered little since last week when it was claimed to be less boring for two weeks in a row. "Since when do we celebrate our commander in chief for violating our most basic freedoms, and misleading the American people in the process? When did we start to stand up and cheer for breaking the law?" Let us all salute Russell Feingold, who seems to spend some time in Washington asking questions no one will answer, and then telling the answers to the folks who elected him back home.

The Sloppy Wobble–W

There are as many as 301 days left of this year, the same number that 1886 had when Charles Gallo threw a vial of some prussic acid into the centre of the Bourse de Paris. When this had no effect Gallo pulled out a pistol and fired blindly five times, causing no victims. Without interrupting the session of trading, Gallo was arrested, convicted and sentenced to 20 years of forced labor. He was, of course, an Anarchist, and like most of them he couldn't shoot straight.

photo, sign, rue du cherche midi

No–Look–Back Pataphysics

This is totally unconnected to the fact that this year has used up 64 days, the same number that 1558 had when Dr. Francisco Fernandez presented some tobacco to Philippe II, King of Spain. The tobacco was from America where it was cultivated and consumed by local peoples who used to be known as Indians. Used for religious ceremonies, reputed to have healing powers, the evil weed turned out to be exactly what dirty old Europe wanted. By 1560 ambassador Jean Nicot was peddling it in France and nobody has looked back, not until five weeks ago.

Hammerless Laughing Gas

photo, sign, grignon srs, decors, baths, tiles

It's unnecessary to thank Metropole for reminding you of the invention of the repeating pistol on this date in 1836. This marvel was dreamed up, mostly, by Samuel Colt, a former peddler of laughing gas. But he had other ideas too and when he was 18 he had some gunsmiths in Baltimore make up models based on his plans. Colt didn't claim the invention, but his were a more practical variation of Elisha H. Collier's revolving Flintlock, patented in Britain. Initial models, manufactured for the US Army, had shrouded hammers but the soldiers didn't know it until they took them apart and couldn't put them back together again. Colt should really be remembered for his notions of mass production which he was the first to formulate in detail. He also added outside hammers to reduce the confusion.

The Ex–Question of Schleswig–Holstein

Some folks might be unaware that today is the anniversary of the impeachment in the US Senate of President Andrew Johnson in 1868. Despite having forced the French to get out of Mexico in 1867 and having a Secretary of State named Seward smart enough to buy Alaska from the Russians for the pittance of $7.2 million, Johnson was nearly the first US president to be impeached, but was acquitted by a single vote. This was, of course, unrelated to Shefqet Verlaci becoming Prime Minister of Albania in 1924 and of Paul Okalik being elected as the first Premier of Nunavut in 1999 and then getting reelected in 2004. Finally, for true history buffs, let us not forget that Joseph Vissarionovich Djougachvili died today in 1953, aged 73. His nickname was Stalin.

A bientôt à Paris
signature, regards, ric

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