Wednesday, November 12, 2008

I didn’t really miss Paris until I went to the American Library in Paris- sad I know, but that is one of the few places that tolerate me and I love the people. Several of us went to a Scottish bar in the Marias to play snooker. Snooker is essentially pool with only two colors and the balls are smaller than the pool I’m accustomed to- no reflection on the English, I’m sure.

As you may recall, my New Zealand friend and I were thoroughly trounced upon by the French in petanque- pool was a different story. We played like champions and just before we beat them into submission they all quit.

“Uhhh?” I exclaimed as they lay their cues on the table.
“This is a boring game” they replied and went off to eat some cheese or something.

I’d write a musical about it but the music left me that day.

I’m staying in New Zealand’s girlfriend’s room in the 8th while she is away on vacation. There is one stipulation to staying there- if the owner of the building or the concierge questions me I’m to tell them that I am her cousin- otherwise they will ask me to leave. It’s a Catholic thing I’m told- very strange. She pays rent, has lived there for years but she is not allowed to have a man stay in her room. I could understand it if it were a home for recovering crack-whores but, as far as I know, this is not the case.

HOT TIP- BIG NEWS: David Sedaris is speaking in Paris next Wednesday. It isn’t being advertised and it’s free. (This is what we call a cliffhanger in the biz.)

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

I’ve been pulled out of the security line at the International Kentucky Airport. There is a “situation” with some of the items discovered in my bag. The dentally challenged security lady pulls out two small jars of Jif Peanut butter.

“You can’t bring these on board.” She says, eyeing them with the same lust and greed that I viewed Caligula at the age of 14.

“You’re taking my peanut butter?”
“Sorry” she says, not sorry at all.
“They don’t sell peanut butter in Paris”
I am nervous; beads of sweat begin to glisten on my forehead. The withdrawal has already begun.
“But what about the change of which Obama spoke?”
“Not going to happen,” she says as she rifles through my bag some more.

An American needs peanut butter- it’s what makes us America. I try to see her point, I suppose I could force the pilot to eat a spoonful and overtake the plane while he tries to extricate it from the roof of his mouth. I should probably thank homeland security for battling peanut butter terrorism- but I’m feeling less than gracious.

“This is too big.” she says, taking a silver can out of my bag”
“Not my product!” I cry as she studies the can of hair gel.
“This” I say, pointing to my luxurious head of hair, “doesn’t just happen”
Unimpressed, she tosses it in the bucket with other illicit items that will undoubtedly make lovely Christmas gifts for her rather large Kentucky brood.

The rest of the trip is uneventful- I’m given the exit row by myself, God’s way of trying to make it right and I sleep for the entire trip thanks to raiding the medicine cabinet of my neighbors.

I’m sitting at Le Grand Corona near Pont Alma sipping an espresso and soaking in the atmosphere. But with all this beauty around me, I can’t help but imagine a toothless, Kentucky security guard with perfectly quaffed hair and the stink of peanut butter emanating from her rather large pores.