token post from abroad

February 16, 2006 – 5:50 pm


thankfully, there are some in paris who share my view of the city’s espresso.

ahem. i’ve not proffered the postage i had anticipated … thanks to a wi-fi signal in our paris apartment that makes the beach boys’ career look steady and uninterrupted by comparison. on the ‘spresso front, things are as bad as people say. my newfound sheaf of insider coffee tips has netted me nothing so much as african hot chocolate to die for — coats the throat and suffices for breakfast, all by itself. but this blog is not about chocolate-jogged screeds or gargoyles or sweet-action book nooks. so, other than a few snide pictorial commments, i’ll spare you a week’s worth of noninstructive euro rambling.

token cultural jibe: this broadside, just outside the airport, is all too indicative of what parisians think of coffee:


yes, appropriations of italian-born alimentary items seem doomed to comic inadequacy. witness the french pizza joint:

mmmm, pizz. delicious pizz! warm pizz!

in the enchanting village of blois, there was this bifocaled and cheery bartender across from the town chapel (read: typical stunning and aged religious stonework) who unfortunately made espresso about was well as he brushed his teeth. voila the rancid skillet wash, apparently pressed through a shoeshiner’s rag using instaurator’s hydraulic principle!


the illy brew at the week’s seventeenth crepe joint was better only in the sense that scooping out your eye with a pallo tool is better than disembowelment.


still, some liked it well enough


as you, ah, might imagine, there are sundry french food aesthetics that always help take the edge off the espresso pangs.


annnnnd, that’s about it for this audience, since there must be other blogs where sweet volumes of aristotle and cowper, a 17-cheese dinner and the best string music known to mankind can be discussed.