March 13, 2008

Parisian Observations

  • Paris is not London.
  • Paris sometimes wants to be London, but it ain’t cool enough.
  • If you wanna leave, get your stuff together, sort yourself out and look for a "Sortie".
  • Men and women share bathrooms in Paris and that’s okay. It makes for some interesting conversations about "American bastards" and "asking permission first".
  • Coffee is overpriced and undermilked in Paris.
  • The French definitely didn’t invent French kissing. Americans just call it that to make it sound fancy, like French Vanilla. In truth, either the Irish or the Scottish must have invented it. They are the most charming of people anyway.
  • You should always listen to friends when they tell you to watch your stuff in Paris.
  • You shouldn’t travel with your driver’s license, not to Paris or to anywhere else where you don’t plan to drive anyway.
  • A beer cannot be bought for less than 5€ in Paris.
  • In Paris history is omnipresent. Where else do you meet your friends in front of something like Notre Dame to go out for dinner?
  • Baguette is fast food in Paris, although I still believe you can eat a burger faster.
  • Paris has more pubs than you can count.
  • Numbering your underground lines like the Parisians do is definitely less effective than naming them like the Londoners do.
  • "Jardins" in Paris are gardens, not parks, so don’t you dare step on the grass! Stroll through them in a civilized manner, but don’t get comfortable or you will be promptly removed.
  • Parisian sidewalks are always wet in the mornings, courtesy of all the shops, bakeries, caf├ęs etc. washing down their strip of pavement with hoses.
  • The Eiffel Tower twinkles at night on the full hour for a few minutes.
  • James Dean is alive and fairly well in Paris, though he is working hard on returning to his deadened state.
  • It is highly recommendable to take an hour-long train ride out of Paris and see the beautiful countryside, complete with trumpet players who live with their geese and wear their hair long.
  • It’s great to be in Paris without speaking French. You can make up what people say to each other in your head. It’s funny if you’re me!!!
  • Paris isn’t any more love-inspiring or romantic than other cities, it’s just their tourism campaign.
  • It is possible though to find love in Paris. I have proof.
  • There is no panther anymore at the Jardin des Plantes, but some trees from Rilke’s time may have survived.
  • Some Japanese food in Paris may cause sudden onset of vertigo and lopsidedness.
  • Paris makes a lot of noise.
  • Paris wasn’t all good to me, but now I know there are some amazing people there. All of them not Parisians.

March 12, 2008

TOP II (Taming Our Present) [Part VII of my "Thinking In Acronyms" series]

The hurricane outside may very well have been summoned by the tornado inside the head.
Attempting to calm the winds with soothing strokes of a pen is nothing short of ludicrous.
The flakes of thoughts ought to be resting, so tread lightly in order not to stir them awake. If no one will listen, it's best to keep silent for now.
The flakes cover the secret that's meant to be kept, for sake of the unspoken promise that was made.
For the little I hold holy, my own word should be one such thing.
The once softly gliding kite now rigorously wrenches at the string, torpedoing between emotions and threatening a downward plunge. Its lifeline hopelessly tangled from all the indecision about the right direction, hope for smooth sailing is implausible.
Standing in the field, arms outstretched, I offer a landing place, a safe haven, and naivety paints the scene.
The winds I dared haven't knocked me down yet, the kite though bears alarming potential for success.
I lost my boots of principle running uphill to watch it fly.
I spent the contents of my pouch buying simple sentiments from strangers.
Now all my strength is focused on keeping my wisdom-stuffed hat and emotion-padded belt in place.
The newly-acquired coat of mystery doesn't fit me and bares a cold shoulder.
I close my eyes and let out a suppliant scream.

"Hush now, you're insane."