Delish Pain Raisin

photo, group, sonia, terri, stanley, john Sonia, Terri, Stanley and John, Group of the Week.

Golden October

by Ric Erickson

Paris:– Thursday, 9. October:–  For reasons that will become clear I am not going to say anything about tonight's Turkish movie in German on Arte–TV tonight, mainly because it was a French movie that was so softdouce – that I couldn't understand a word of the dialogue, but the actress with the red hair was a stunner, if you like freckles. Given the times that we have the good luck to be living through – no Chinese pun intended – it occurred to me that readers and club fans might prefer to be entertained by tales of wild times at the club. Too bad then, that we were good, on best behavior, and nobody let off any outrageous gaffes.

However there was some good news on tonight's TV–news. Our French guy in DC who runs the IMF said that all that is necessary to set the world straight is 1400 billion dollars. I'll spell that. That's one thousand four hundred billion dollars. That, and DSK said, the ability, the will to do something all together! It means that Sarko has to get Angela to do what she thinks he should do, and everybody else has to do it too, all at the same time. With 200–plus countries in the world it will be difficult but I am sure that our supreme commander can pull it off. That reminds me that the terms of our Loto have changed. It costs more to play but they are supposed to pay out more, more often. It sounds like the beginning of inflation to me. Unless I win big.

photo, citron presse of the weekCitron pressé of the Week

After Sports and News, the Weather

Didn't I say the heat is on? I must have. While it's getting the strength to reach the third floor, the good news here is about the wind that has finally died and faded away to gentle wisps that fan our frozen brows. That was a big, long, wind. Today there were six clouds over Concorde in still air with the sun shining over everything, and gallons of sunshine blasted the club's café the whole time we were there this afternoon. Oh, it was so good! Basically true and scarcely believable weather details follow the club report.

The Delish Pain Raisin of the Week Club Report

Facing the prospect of being able to walk around outside without wearing my gloves, hat, sweater and scarf, I left for the club early, travelling by way of Concorde so that I could saunter through the Tuileries on the lookout for the perfect pile of freshly fallen golden leaves. A short lady who I never saw before pretended to drop a fake gold ring on the ground and pick it up, offering me my lost treasure. I laughed out loud. I haven't had a ring since my skull ring made out of krypton fell off in the Kitsilano tidal pool one night when I was at the submarine races.

photo, trio of glassTrio of Glass of the Week.

The short lady pressed the golden ring into my hand, and said it would bring me luck. She said that she herself had no rings or other jewelry, because she was too poor, from Korsovo, and had three tiny daughters to feed. Hearing this I immediately returned the ring, telling her it was her lucky day. Then she said she needed a sandwich and a cola desperately. For her daughters. Touched, I gave her all my change, about 78 cents. She began to complain about the cost of a sandwich and a cola and I suggested she sell her golden ring. The last I saw she was looking around for the next likely rube, for the next ring drop.

That's when I saw the tree house. What the dickens are tree houses doing in the Tuileries? From the looks of the one I saw they are intended for very small people – or could it be, big squirrels? Perplexed, I continued in an easterly direction, past the Carrousel and the Pyramid and into the Cour Carrée, which was almost completely filled with a big, tin barn. No doubt for the exposition of something more than faintly commercial, but there was no indication of what. Prevented from taking the sortie I intended, I took the direction of the Pont des Arts, which was festooned with red CGT flags. The bridge was on strike!

Fairly worn out by all this excitement I arrived at the club. No sooner had I placed my derriere on the club's banquette than new members Sonia and Stanley Porter were verifying that I was indeed the club's secretary, by seeing if I recognized a print–out of the club's About page. It reminded me I should update it, put in something about this being the 433rd meeting, close to the end of the 9th year of it.

photo, ratp cards, terrie, john New face of Orange cards.

The Porters said they called Annandale, Virginia, near Washington, DC, home. I said I called Annandale, Virginia the City of the Week. Five minutes into a club meeting and we had a City of the Week. Wasn't it a good thing I gave that gold ring back? Sonia and Stanley told me they were on their 13th visit to Paris. Stanley's first was in 1960, when he was here doing some government work for his uncle. In those days, he said, a lot of it was done around Pigalle .

He also remembered Les Halles and getting hotel reservations at the train station. That took me back. The days when you could do all sorts of useful things in train stations. Did I ever mention the Christmas dinner I had in the Munich Hauptbahnhof in 1969? It was like one of those mittel European movies in black and white, where sinister folks in strange hats with rabbit feet in the hatbands, were hanging around. Stasi guys I guess.

I didn't have a chance to explore this aspect of life with Stanley because members Terri Minami and John Lawton hove up, on yet another visit from their hometown in Mount Washington, California. John said they had just seen new chairs in the Tuileries. "They had lounge versions and numbers on them," he said. No doubt a result of just having had a load of chocolate at Angelina's. He said it was the seventh time there and the first to actually get in and have some goodies. Me, they have lineups they won't let me stand in, so I can only dream.

photo, wine glass and empty jug, pot Full glass, empty pot.

Although we weren't talking about it, Stanley said he failed French. He squeaked into class by memorizing the La Marseillaise phonetically, and reciting it, perfectly, according to the teacher. Then he went from the top of the class to the bottom faster than you can say alors! John also had a failed–French story and I added mine – failed three times, plus failed German and Spanish, once each.

Terri had to mention "little" sorbet balls at Angelina's, and bring up the chocolate again for Stanley. Then, Stanley said he had a choice between cigarettes and candy, and cigarettes didn't win. But he didn't know about our no smoking here. Not in public inside, not in cafés, not in restaurants, not in bars and not in jazz clubs. Like a neighbor said the other day, it's hard not to notice all the smoke out in the streets. Smokers get together regularly to discuss which are the best streets to smoke on.

Not that anybody cares but the economic situation came up. Stanley said not enough people got down on their hands and knees to read the little stickers that didn't say anything about Federal Insurance. They went ahead and bought it anyhow. And this was before he heard about the 1400 billion!

photo, patrick, waiter of the weekPatrick, our Waiter of the Week.

Okay, we talked about other stuff too, and Sonia said she loved the pain raisin more than anything, and John said there were faux French boulangeries in Tokyo and Las Vegas and everywhere, and there's Berthillon ice cream and sorbet too – which Stanley wanted to hear about. It went on, skipping around here and there, and we went out on the terrace for the Group Photo of the Week and Patrick was the Waiter of the Week, and the sun was shining and we missed it for two hours but there was no smoke where we were, was there?

Orange Kisses from Spain Weather

The weather on tonight's TV–news was highly upbeat. Young Tania on the TV–weather said it was going to be more like September than October. Does anybody remember what they say? Golden October. Here is the weekend prediction:

Friday is scheduled to have a morning and an afternoon and you might not be able to tell the difference because it is supposed to be mostly sunny except for morning fog in gulches – nearly no gulches in Paris – and tiny little white cloudlettes. Temperature foreseen is 19 degrees. Same everything for Saturday and Sunday, maybe even smaller clouds, and temperatures of 21 both days. Go out and smoke, if you must.

About the Café Metropole Club

Stride your fingers, slip your knuckle and slide your wrist to click up some astonishing past versions of club meeting reports hidden deep in this somewhere Web. No audio waves other than hearing actual members' frequencies during club meetings. No video at all. Real lame with words, just verbs, nouns, and filthy adjectives. Real blurry but vivid photos. A clue about what we might have been doing today may help and can be found on the About the Café Metropole Club webpage.

graphic, club location map

High Times In the Patazone

As unrehearsed as any day of the week and unusually, like today, a Thursday. Club meetings run from 15:00 to 17:00 on Thursdays. The metric times are equivalent to 3 to 5 pm around other unmetric places, while meetings are held right here. The next meeting will be on Thursday, 16. October in the afternoon. If you feel like saying something, it will be heard by the other members present if there are any and if they are listening, and sometimes they are, but not always.* Your other, absolutely true, stories are totally welcome too even if they are true.

Caution – should you have a personal desire 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. All you folks staying lost, come back!

*The above spell–checked report you may have just read has been encherished by a surprise reappearance of a genuine City of the Week, which is not to say that some of them have not been kosher because they weren't actually cities, but small towns or faceless suburbs, because they count as legit Cities of the Week just as if they were big time places like, like Fargo, ND for example.

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, 16. October.

A bientôt à Paris
signature, regards, ric

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