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photo, snack chalet in luxembourg garden A warm chalet in the Luxembourg.

No Issue At All – So Skip It

by Ric Erickson

Paris:– Monday, 21. January:–  I waited all week for a sunny day but there wasn't one, so I went out yesterday with what was available and I was surprised at the numbers of folks walking around – full of lunch and tired of television and video games – refusing to accept a dictated day of gloom.

You Can Bombard Folks

It just goes to show that you can bombard folks with new movies, 88 more TV channels half of them sports, endless music on the Internet, online gaming and all sorts of tube–vous, but they get full of it and just want to walk around where they've walked around thousands of times before gawking at the free sights, pushing bicycles, baby buggies, dragging reluctant dogs, arm–in–arm with bored mistresses in high heels, so because these won't stay home and buy something, anything, we are going to have a recession, because we believe everything that we're told.

photo, medici fountain in luxembourg Winter's black water.

Further off the subject I cannot get. France–2 had a wonderful weather map for Tuesday. There was a squeeze of gray–gloom bulging in from the northeast and a companion bulge pushing up from the southwest, and in a diagonal centre stretching from northwest to southeast there is to be some half–hearted semi–blue skies not filled 100% with overcast in the afternoon. The high might even be 10 degrees.

On Wednesday the bulgy lump will be all the way to the southeast and all the rest of France will be expecting crumminess, also with a temperature of 10 degrees. By Thursday the utter crumminess will have compressed itself into the northwest, and it will blank the Channel area as is right and proper. Around here it might be semi–okay, the temperature will bound up to 11 degrees, and we will be kicking our heels in the streets.

Just on time, a day early, Météo Jim our fearless predictor of heavenly phenoms, has posted yet another courageous prediction that includes that dreaded word, recession. His grip on the weather situation, in contrast, is solid:–

Ugh, Ugh, Ugly

The two biggest weather related events are the snow that fell in the Deep South. Some places received almost 3 a–inches of la neige. From the Midwest to the East, temperatures will rise to about 0 a–grad to the low 20s a–grad and wind chills from -20 a–grad to 0 a–grad. Once again, the European Temperature Translator Union is on strike, protesting the inhuman conditions.

photo, sign, pelouse interdit

As for Pommeland, the winter that sometimes continues to be still continues to sometimes be. There was about an inch of snow Thursday night which changed to rain followed by sun and temperatures in the mid 40s on Friday. A cold front will arrive this weekend and drop temperatures into the mid 20s during the day. Monday is Martin Luther King Day, a federal holiday which means that banks, federal, state and local government offices are closed. With the economy in a recession, nobody knows if the cold and lack of money and bargains will keep people from buying and end the recession that technically doesn't exist. Temperatures will rise into the mid 30s next week but as the thermometer rises, rain, snow and schnain will fall. That will be all.

A la prochaine, Météo Jim

Café Life

No Issue At All

I didn't ask him to but Uncle phoned today and commenced to rant and rave about the gray skies. I was standing in front of my big windows overlooking the dreary cemetery of Montparnasse pretending I was looking towards the mountains across the harbor from Vancouver, but of course they are shrouded in mist and fog, aren't they?

photo, angle building

He had a good answer for that. He said, "I'm going to Italy on Thursday." He said he is going to Genoa to sit by the dock of the bay. According to tonight's weather, if the Monte Carlo Rallye has been run, then it will be sunny down there. You can say what you want but I say he is not running away, but running towards decent spaghetti.

But don't pay any attention to me. I am keeping busy, doing my audio researches. I would be doing pool research if I had any place to put one. Instead I read all about one amplifier and then I read that it might not have enough horsepower, or about speakers that are wonderful, but they aren't sold here. You could pass weeks doing this.

A friend once said that you could have the best hifi setup in the world but only after your ears were too old to hear it. He said the same about cars – when you can afford a Porsche supercar you'll probably be too blind to drive. Good stuff is wasted on the prematurely rich.

photo, empty street

So, excuse me. I have to get up early to continue my researches. If this seems like a kind of skimpy issue, just consider that without this little bit to hold the photos together, there would be no issue at all. I wonder where the photos came from.

Soldes for You in Paris

Bring money for winter sales,, and in return Paris is going to give you a big discount. That's right! On Wednesday, 9. January the Soldes d'Hiver took off and continue until February, until the 16th, which is the Saturday following Valentine's Day, slightly before election day. Discounts will run to huge or more on some items. First–come first–served even if you aren't a shopper. Seeing Parisians in riot mode for something other than freebies will be something to remember.

photo, place and rue de l'odeon, christmas lights The place and the rue de l'Odéon.

ABC for You from Matt

Matthew Rose, a pal of Metropole, has written, painted, spindled, folded and printed a little book titled Mister Rose's ABC Book for folks who need reminding about their ABCs or are just learning. It is in full color with 28–odd pages, and simple words, and the publisher – who is none other that Matt himself – wants you to buy it today. I've seen it – it's certainly worth the 10€ he's asking. There's postage too, but it's still less than the book price. Matt will even hand–sign your copy. Buy lots a copies and Matt will give a nice discount. After you hit this buy Matt's ABC Book link , think of Matt carrying your new book to La Poste in person, as simple as ABC.

The Café Metropole Club

Any club meeting with two polite members is fine with me, such as the one last week. All other members and prospectals are still welcome. The next Thursday everything at the Café Metropole Club will be 101% new, on the 24. January, in the terrible month of January. Any members–in–good form, any standing, of any sort will be welcome, so long as you read this.

The next meeting of the Café Metropole Club will be on 24. January, exactly a paragraph after mentioning it already. The boring Saint of the Day is fini, over, banned to perdu. We will have instead famous days to forget, such as Thursday's Beer Can Day. Clever folks at Krueger's put some beer in tins and sold it for the first time in 1935. If that doesn't grab you, what about the first Macintosh being sold on Thursday's date in 1964? Not that either? How about Hadrian's birthday? He was born in 76.

photo, fiat 500 of the week A sad Fiat 500 of the Week.

Endless repeats forever, related to Paris by a long and invisible but strong thread. A sparkling fact plus one phoney rumor about the club and its lone RGB factoid are on a page called the About the Club Webpage. Readers who actually have read it, and two or three might have, need no longer be curious. If I am wrong as has happened, write your own version. The free membership card for real members is still free. Whatever is asked for it, it's copyrighted.

photo, sign, rue des grands augustins

This Was Metropole a Long Time Ago

What is this morbid fixation with the past? An ordinary decade is ten years, yet it was only 8 years ago that the Café column had Black and White All Over, Au Bistro raved about the 35–Hour Work Week Becomes Law, and there was a feature about Photography and Eugène Atget. There were four posters, and a cartoon, titled Where Is Libya? That was really enough in Issue 5.03:– Monday, 17. January 2000 and I'm still losing hair over it.

Café Life Légère 93.1

Incredible Issac

Here is an unique new Quote of the Week. It has a connection or relevance to today, but none to tomorrow or next week. Take one by good old Isaac Newton. He had several things to say, such as, "The main Business of natural Philosophy is to argue from Phenomena without feigning Hypotheses, and to deduce Causes from Effects, till we come to the very first Cause, which certainly is not mechanical." Yes, certainly, but what does it really mean?

photo, sign, rue suger

'Patahistory of Tonga

There are no more than 344 days left of this year, the same number that 1643 had when Abel Janszoon Tasman was the first man to reach Tonga, which anyone can find at 20° South, 175° West. In fact Tasman was preceded by Willem Schouten and Jacob Le Maire but not on this date, in 1616. Tongan ceramic plates have been dated to 2800–2750 years ago, and Tongans went all over the Pacific discovering things before they were found themselves. Tonga is still a monarchy, and owns itself. The average temperatures are between 23 and 32 degrees, but it rains a lot, especially around the northern islands, closer to the Equator.

Wobble–Winter Racing

This is totally unconnected to the fact that this year has used up 21 days, the same number that 1911 had when the first Monte Carlo Rally was raced. In the beginning competitors started at five different locations, all in winter, to arrive in Monaco, also in winter. The Rally, as it is laughingly called, tests the hardiness of cars and drivers, and is second only to the Gibraltar GP, where once all the drivers were Peter Ustinov. If interested, check on the 75th Monte Carlo Rallye right here.

photo, sign, bas relief, the scribe

The Ex–Question of Schleswig–Holstein

A few folks have might have been thinking that it is only right and proper to remember that it was today in 1908 that the Sullivan Ordinance was passed in New York City. If it hadn't been vetoed by the mayor it would have made it illegal for women to smoke in public. I always thought it was against women carrying pistols. Meanwhile in 1925 it was left up to Albania to declare itself a Republic because nobody else wanted to. Later in history, like in 2002, the Canadian dollar would only buy 61 US cents. Finally there was a birthday for Christian Dior in 1905 and popular music got a boost from the birth of Wolfman Jack, in 1938. Neither, alas, is with us today.

A bientôt à Paris
signature, regards, ric

Send email concerning the
contents to: Ric Erickson, Editor.
Metropole Midi © 2014
– unless stated otherwise.
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Waldo Bini