No Curtains, No Lights

photo, marche, rue daguerre, rain, fruits, moules You need vitamins in this weather.

Orange In November

by Ric Erickson

Paris:– Monday, 10. November:–  I am thinking of becoming a professional blogger. I had a nice apartment with a good view over a famous cemetery but I let my landlord push me out in winter – what was I thinking? – was I thinking? – and now I live in a hotel while I look for another apartment, just as nice, near something equally famous. If you call that a plan then you are just not a clear thinker, like I am not.

So, here I am, in my little room that hasn't much heat, with a tiny TV with poor sound, and there's nothing on Arte–TV that I want to watch tonight. Tomorrow we are supposed to remember WWI and we've been given a holiday for it, which means that folks won't be advertising their beautiful apartments, which they aren't anyway on account of the terrible situation. Did you hear that General Motors is going bust? When the General gets sick what is there for the rest of us?

photo, cafe terrace, rain A terrace for winter seasons.

Anyway, I am sans domicile fixe without much between me and lying around on a sidewalk with my fist gripping a wine bottle. You know, just like George Orwell and that's why I was thinking of becoming a blogger. I mean, George blogged, and look at where he is today. Yes I know he's dead but he's more famous than ever, partly thanks to all that crazy stuff in America, but that's been fixed now that our guy Barack Obama got elected last Tuesday. I can almost see the Big Rock Candy Mountain already.

Meanwhile there's the weather to consider. It became November recently. This doesn't automatically mean that it will be dark, gray, wet, windy and damp but this year has it in for us, for me. That is exactly what it is, all of those, but thankfully not all that cold yet. It was windy today and 13 degrees. For what it's worth, details of the coming weather:

Orange Autumn Weather

According to tonight's TV–weather news and sports the habitual depression that hangs over Ireland is in place. This creates a counter–clockwise swirl that passes through France like the rear wheel of a bicycle without a fender, shooting spray straight up our backsides. On the weather map it looks thick and horrible. On the ground in places it might be worse because there has been a lot of rain, mostly elsewhere, but tonight it is we who have been given the dreaded Orange warning.

photo, wine shop, umbrella, scooter, rain Times for wine thicker than beaujolais.

I don't know it it's for wind, rain, high tides, snow or high winds. I think it may be a general umbrella alert. For Tuesday expect southwest winds of 60 kph and overcast, rain, and a temperature of 13 degrees. There may be some clearing on Wednesday, maybe to semi sunny, but only 11 for the high. Demi or half sunny might be our lot on Thursday, with the high failing to reach 10 degrees. It probably won't even be trying.

Our man Météo Jim, bless his humble house, offered to send the weather for New York but I wasn't certain to do the same for Paris. So while I am only a thin hair from Down and Out Météo Jim is taking a bit of time off from his onerous duties, even though the weatherman never sleeps.

photo, sign, tarte aux fruits

Café Life

What I Do, Walk Around

This is where I intended to begin blogging. There was another time I intended to begin blogging and that was called GoodBlogWeek. After thinking up the name I took a couple of stabs at it but somehow I felt that I wasn't connecting with blogging. It's such a silly term that you would think it's right up my alley. Hell, blogging, what is it?

I guess I don't know. Looking for an apartment I have a lot of things on my mind, like what am I going to eat tonight. I go out and walk around all over in the 14th arrondissement, dropping in at real estate agent boutiques. Last Monday I almost fell over when one told me he actually had an apartment to show me. It was a fourth floor walkup, but a real apartment with a bedroom and a small kitchen and a living room with a window facing where the sun will set in summer. I put in a bid for it and I'm waiting.

photo, horse butcher, roast chickens, rain For a chicken in every pot.

Part of the time I spend online. Many agents use a Website named SeLoger and private–to–private listings are on PAP. There are some others too but not as active. For strange offers I look at Fusac and Craigslist but most of these are for short term furnished digs. They are somewhat more expensive too.

There was an item on the TV news about some dude in Ohio or Indiana who was trying to sell a house for a dollar. Some poor folks lived there and were buying the place but they couldn't keep up with the interest rates, so they were evicted. Now nobody can afford to buy the place, and the owner is worried about the taxes, so it's for sale for a buck. I don't understand why he doesn't find the folks who were evicted and give them the house for a dollar. What's wrong with us?

photo, seine quay, boats, pont des arts, louvre Colors, seen darkly.

Looking in a window I saw an ad for a house in the country, on sale for a price so low even I could afford it. There are parts of France where nobody wants to live. There are parts of France where it is hard to live – where is was always hard and despite everything modern, it won't get any easier. For all that it isn't the Northwest Territories or Siberia. Try and tell that to anybody who lives in either place.

I walk around and I look at windows. Do they have curtains? At night are all the lights out? There are supposed to be a hundred thousand empty apartments here because landlords are terrified by tenants. We are an evil, greedy bunch. We wear places out by living in them. We wear ourselves out by living. Polls here say that if Obama were a candidate here the French would give him a 85% majority. What's he say? Change...

photo, sign, tennis cafeteria

The Café Metropole Club That Was

I don't know when the club secretary will be able to host the next club meeting. Check Metropole's front page for updates. All members in any shape, class, form, hue, any standing, of any type or creed, will be offered a chair. If you feel like sitting at a table on the terrace, pretending to not be at the meeting, you will not be able to use a club table to hold up your drink.

photo, sign, quai des orfevres

The rusty old rumor that repetition will end someday is creaky. One false fact and four–thirds of a fake rumor about the club are on a page called the About the Club Webpage. Readers who have read it in person, and one or two have, may already be club members for life without exorbitant risk or fees. Refunds can be refunded on principle. Make your deposit soon.

The Ex–Question of Schleswig–Holstein

photo, sign, hotel henri IV

Some alert readers might have considered that it is apt to remember that it was today in 1619 that René Descartes woke from the dreams that inspired his Meditations on First Philosophy. However I was unable to nail this date for this event so let us merely note that he said, "Cogito ergo sum." Old René is also famous for the Cartesian Theory of Fallacies, such as, "This statement is a lie." It was today in 1799 that Napoléon ended the French Revolution by staging a tricky but successful coup within a coup. Exactly 72 years later Henry Morton Stanley found Dr. David Livingstone near Lake Tanganyika. He is reported to have said, "What's up, Doc?" The Wall fell in Berlin in 1989 and a day later the Commies threw in the red towel in Bulgaria when Todor Zhivkov was booted out of the Politburo. Today is also the anniversary of the Battle of Varna, way back in 1444. Birthdays of the famous remind us of Martin Luther's in 1483, and in 1940 of Screaming Lord Sutch, some kind of pop musician and founder of the Official Monster Raving Loony Party. A Quote of the Week always closes this part of our program. This week we call on Kurt Vonnegut who once said, apropos of I know not what, "A purpose of human life, no matter who is controlling it, is to love whoever is around to be loved." There are 51 days left of this year. That's our little world, folks!

A bientôt à Paris
signature, regards, ric

Send email concerning the
contents to: Ric Erickson, Editor.
Metropole Midi © 2014
– unless stated otherwise.
logo, metropole sml midi logo No matter how good it tastes,
there is no such thing
as a free lunch.
Waldo Bini