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Entries Tagged as 'France'

Taking the Ikea Test

June 17th, 2017 · No Comments · France

Ikea exists to test me. The Swedish masters of flat-pack furniture seem to have been designated by the universe to ask hard questions of me. “We know you are not a home-improvement guy. Not mechanical at all. Ignorant of electrical workings. Not to be trusted with anything plumbing-oriented, aside from (perhaps) a plunger. “But can […]

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Not All Awful Mugshots Are Taken in Police Stations

May 31st, 2017 · No Comments · France, Golf

No one looks good in the “booking” mugshot. Well, except for this guy. The booking photo taken at the police station is the one you do not want anyone to see. As Tiger Woods can attest to, this week, after his arrest for “driving under the influence”, in Florida. It looks like he is having […]

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U.S. Soccer and an Age-Group Success?

May 26th, 2017 · No Comments · Arsenal, Fifa, Football, France, Italy, London 2012, Rio Olympics, soccer, Spain, UAE

In 1999, a U.S. team led by Landon Donovan got to the semifinals of the Fifa Under 17 Championship, in New Zealand. The young Americans played Australia to a 2-2 draw but lost the shootout 7-6 when Kenny Cutler missed his penalty and Oz’s Joshua Kennedy converted. Brazil won the tournament and the Yanks finished […]

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The Cattle Egret and Other Freaks of Nature

May 24th, 2017 · No Comments · France

What we do not know about the natural world around us is an extensive body of information. Quite. In the past decade, for the first time in human history more people live in urban than in rural areas, according to the UN. And we City Kids often don’t know what to make of our surroundings […]

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Arsene and Arsenal: Time for a Breakup

May 22nd, 2017 · No Comments · Arsenal, English Premier League, Football, France, soccer

For as long as I have been a quasi-fan of Arsenal FC, which is about seven years now, the debate has raged, fomented by placard-waving fans or banners pulled along in the sky by small airplanes. Sometimes the argument is loud. Sometimes louder. Is it time for Arsene Wenger, the coach since 1996 of English […]

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When a Storeroom Became a Garage

May 20th, 2017 · No Comments · France

The place where we live, in the south of France, has a large room on the ground level. However, it was not necessarily a garage. Until the other day, when we slowly backed a dinky Toyota into a space that offers no more than 10 inches of extra room. Ta-da! Our place has a garage, […]

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‘A Green Worm Is Going toward a Green Glass’ and Other French Nightmares

May 2nd, 2017 · No Comments · France

I have lived in France for about 15 months now and I am sometimes asked: “How is your French coming along?” The answer? It ain’t. As I told a fellow Yank, a few weeks ago: “My French is nonexistent.” He chuckled at that. “Nonexistent. Ha.” It would help if I were trying harder than “puzzling […]

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Frost on Vines a Disaster, Here in Rural France

April 30th, 2017 · No Comments · France, Languedoc

Sometimes we forget that this part of France is not just thinly populated … it is rural. It is farmland. Vines, mostly, acres and acres of them, in every direction. Towns are small and grew up here as places to support working in the vines. In our town, population 600, many of the garages we […]

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Catching Up on Super Bowl Commercials and Other American Cultural Touchstones

April 28th, 2017 · No Comments · Abu Dhabi, France

Geez. You spend most of 7.5 years out of the country … and homeland cultural references just blow right past. Until two days ago, I did not know that Bill Simmons‘s new website, The Ringer, had launched. As of June 2016. Which means it is not new at all but somehow had gone unnoticed by […]

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Winter Clothes? Yes, Really

April 25th, 2017 · No Comments · Abu Dhabi, France, Long Beach, Olympics, Travel

I’ve never really had winter clothes. Because I always lived in places that either were temperate or Just Plain Hot. Long Beach, then the Inland Empire, then Abu Dhabi. But here in Europe, in France, we can go weeks (!) without a single minute in the 60-degree (Fahrenheit) range in December, January, February. Granted, it’s […]

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