Archive for December, 2008


The Green and the Blue

The pharmacie, a distinctly French institution, bears little resemblance to a CVS or Walgreen’s. You go to the pharmacist when you want prescriptions filled but also to consult the pharmacist for the appropriate over the counter medications for whatever ails you and these they dispense with abundance. Seriously, I have friends who go in looking […]

Quick! To the Grand Palais!

Good news: There’s an amazing, must -see video installation at the Grand Palais. Bad news: It closes on December 31 at 9PM. “Dans la Nuit, des Images” fills the cavernous museum with 130 screens of videos and films from international artists and filmmakers including Robert Wilson, Bill Viola, Chris Marker, Rosemary Trockel, Christian Marclay, legendary […]

Delanoe Letter in NYT Was Fake

Let’s enjoy some holiday schadenfreude at the expense of the New York Times, who published a letter purportedly from Betrand Delanoë, the mayor of Paris, only to find that it was a fake. They had received it by email and never verified that it was from him. I think I will be bringing this up the next […]

From Trash to Art

I saw a stunning exhibit today: It’s called “Recup” (colloquial for saving old stuff to turn it into something else, like saving Styrofoam to insulate a room) and it is to be seen until Jaunary 4th, at L’Espace Blancs Manteaux in the heart of Le Marais. Most of the art pieces exhibited there are made […]

Deer 1

Walking along the Rue St Maur with my head bowed down against the freezing sleet, I look up and suddenly find myself eye to eye with a deer. In this modern, concrete environment next to an Atac supermarket, the deer is of course not a real one, but the effect is as the artist would […]

Deer 2

I’m just back from Normandy where I had a family gathering and I really enjoyed it, despite the obscene amount of food that was on the table! I don’t resist showing you the deer that sits in the art gallery next to my building entrance.

Book 'em

Last-minute Christmas shopping list for the Francophiles in your life:   For the one who longs for the South (of France, of course) Provençal Cooking: Savoring the Simple Life in France, by Mary Ann Caws A very sweet memoir of cabanon life in the Vaucluse, of Caws’s friendship with the poet René Char, of cave […]

Gift Wrapping Conundrum

Sometimes the differences in French and American ways of doing things just seem to pop out of nowhere and bite you where it counts. I really was not prepared for the fact that it is virtually impossible to purchase an empty gift box anywhere in Paris. (I am hedging a bit here because although I […]

Rewriting Les Miserables

For my eleventh or twelfth birthday, my parents gave me a cassette tape recording of the musical “Les Miserables.” One of the consequences was that I checked out Victor Hugo’s novel in English from the local library, and when I finished reading it, set about writing a sequel in which Gavroche didn’t really die, nor […]

Farewell, My Lovely

I happened to pass by the Eiffel Tower this evening and I could not help thinking this was probably the last time I would see it in its blue dress. If you remember, the reason why it turned blue 6 months ago, is because France took over the European Presidency. At the end of 2008 […]

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