Let Them Eat Cake

Marie-Antoinette at the Grand Palais

Let Them Eat Cake

Parler Paris…

Your taste of life in Paris and France
Monday, March 31, 2008
Paris, France

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Special One-Time Offer…
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March 31, 2008 and pay Dollars not Euros!

The experts at French Property Consultation can help you find your dream home in Paris or France. And now you can save!

Book any of our consultation services by March 31, 2008, and schedule them by June 30, 2008, and the charges will be in the U.S. dollar rates!

For example, if you book a one-on-one consultation, the fee of $290 is a savings of 55% off the rate of 290€ which was effective March 1* — a savings of $137.50! If you hire our team to help you find a property, that $290 you paid for the initial consultation will apply toward the advance search fee of 1,450€, a net amount of 1,160€…but if you book the search by March 31, 2008, and schedule it before June 30, 2008, you won’t pay 1,160€…you’ll pay only $1,160!!! Again, you’re going to save 55% of the rate of 1,160€ — a savings of $638!

To book your consultation, search, purchase or sales assistance or other property consultation service NOW, BEFORE IT’S TOO LATE, visit /frenchproperty/consultation/booking.html or email info@adrianleeds.com

*Effective March 1, 2008, all property consultation fees are charged in euro value and may be paid for by credit card in U.S. dollars based on the rate of exchange at Moneycorp Currency Convertor on the date of transaction.

Dear Parler Paris Reader,

She’s only been on display a couple of weeks — Marie-Antoinette, that is. And only fitting that the exhibition should be taking place at the ‘Grand Palais’ — for such a tiny, ruddy-faced woman who fills the space like a tank of helium fills a balloon about the burst.

The exhibit is brilliantly executed and curated, as is most art exhibits in the major museums, and plenty has been written about it (including an excellent article in the International Herald Tribune and another in Paris-Update), so we can leave the reviews to these more qualified critics.

What I want to talk about is ‘cake’ and who’s really eating it.

Marie is as famous a queen as Mona Lisa is a painting, in spite of the few years she reigned — only 19, and at a very young age. No, she didn’t REALLY say “Let them eat cake,” as ‘they’ (the starving commoners) and we would all like to have believed, since our image of her is of a spoiled child. No, “Qu’ils mangent de la brioche” is a phrase from Jean-Jacques Rousseau’s 12-volume autobiographical work “Confessions” written in 1770 BEFORE the little Austrian princess arrived at Versailles. It was later attributed to Marie-Thérèse (1638-83), the wife of Louis XIV, but in all honesty, given the laws governing the bakers at the time, it was a sensible thing to do so that the poor could eat the more unaffordable brioche for the same price as bread.

ize="2" face="Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif">Poor Marie was blamed for everything, including her husband’s ‘shortcomings’ — 15-year-old Louis is reported to have been fat, awkward, and shy, passionate for locks, hunting and harboring a medical condition known as “phimosis” which prevented him from fathering children for the first seven years of their marriage.

The exhibit reminds us that she was definitely eating cake while her royal subjects were starving in the streets. The lavishness of her wardrobe, furnishings, abodes and all their ‘accoutrements’ tell tales of the imbalance of wealth and its inevitable doom. It inspired us to pop into the DVD player Sophia Coppola’s rendition of “Marie-Antoinette” to get a glimpse at a modern-day view on a centuries-old royal tale.

Cake it is…and lots of it. ‘Eye candy’ is what this movie is all about and how it makes us wish we could live like a queen, but not to die as this one did.

In contrast to the opulence of pre-revolutionary royalist France swimming around in my head, I watched 3rd district Mayor Pierre Aidenbaum pace up and down at the corner of rue de Bretagne and rue Charlot Sunday morning. I was seated at “Café Charlot” having a “café crème” and “tartine” (baguette and butter, not brioche) one hour on the clock later than my stomach’s timetable (thanks to Daylight Savings Time). I wondered why and for whom he was waiting. Seeing me, he waved briefly, then I noticed M. Bertrand Delanoë stroll up carrying a navy blue umbrella, wearing a simple brown puff jacket. They shook hands. Just two doors down from the corner is an office for the “Parti Socialiste,” on the window of which sports a photo of the two Mayors, both of whom are affiliates of the party…representing the very commoners who were relegated to eating cake!

Aidenbaum is a fixture in the neighborhood, and while he shakes hands with his constituents regularly, he doesn’t draw ‘flies’ like Delanoë, so before long, there was a small circle of fans around the illustrious Mayor of Paris. Quickly swabbing my lips with a bright red lipstick and wearing Sunday morning grunge, I crossed the street and asked M. Aidenbaum sheepishly if I could say “Bonjour” to the man who has improved Paris more than anyone else ever in office.

He put his arm around me and introduced me as one of the 3rd’s most devoted residents. I shook M. Delanoë’s hand and blubbered like an idiot in terrible French — words that probably had no real meaning in French…except for what I was thinking, which was…

“Let them eat cake.”

Special Notes:

March 15, 2008- June 30, 2008
Grand Palais

A la prochaine…

Adrian Leeds
Editor, Parler Paris

P.S. Next Tuesday we’ll be gathering from 3 to 5 p.m. at La Pierre du Marais for our monthly Parler Paris Après Midi! Be there if you can! It’s free and it’s fun. Visit /parlerparis/apresmidi.html for more information.

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Visit /frenchproperty/loan or contact Mortgage Manager John Rule at loan@adrianleeds.com

This Week in French Property Insider…

French Property SharesThe Zero Plus Loan Option
From Banque Patrimoine et Immobilier
By Adrian Leeds

Banque Patrimoine et Immobilier (BPI), a wholly owned subsidiary of CIF Group Credit Immobilier de France, one of France’s largest mortgage lenders, has taken a very creative approach to eliminating the rate of exchange risk for international customers, and in particular, for Americans who are faced with a weakening U.S. dollar…Subscribers Read On…

Learn how to buy property in France!

French Property Insider is a weekly e-zine, sharing insights, recommendations, tips, and discoveries about Paris real estate and French property. Each information-packed issue is devoted to educating its readers on how to effectively, efficiently and profitably purchase property in France.

For more information visit /frenchproperty/insider or email info@adrianleeds.com

Judith MeriansScreenwriters: “Plot the Perfect Crime and Find Fame and Fortune” with Judith Merians
April 12, 2008, 3 p.m. to 6 p.m.
La Pierre du Marais

Throughout film history crime films have provided some of the most successful movies ever made from Rififi to present day American Gangster. Learn how to write and sell a script that encompasses the conventions of three of the most popular sub-genres of crime stories: the detective tale, the crime saga, and the heist.

Led by Judith Merians, who has been an entertainment lawyer and studio executive, literary agent, and film school professor in Los Angeles for over 25 years.

Join us for this 3-hour workshop session sponsored by Adrian Leeds and Parler Paris Upstairs at La Pierre du Marais in Le Marais. Only 30€ per person!

Places are limited. For more information visit /frenchproperty/conference and to register email judithmerians@aol.com

“The Ultimate Travel Writer’s Workshop”
W with Lori Allen and the AWAI
July 24-26, 2008
San Francisco, CA

This summer, spend three fun days with the folks from the American Writers and Artists, Inc. in San Francisco and discover the secrets to traveling the world, potentially for free by getting paid as a travel writer.

It’s true. Lots of writers do it. This is your chance to rub shoulders with some of the best writers and editors in the business and discover first-hand how to turn your traveling into royalties or paychecks, and see the world in a different way than as an ordinary tourist.

Register by June 24, 2008, and save $300!

To register for the Ultimate Travel Writer’s Workshop call Terry Frank at (202) 370-6459 EST or toll-free at (866) 415-1425 or email her at: terry@thetravelwriterslife.com

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Parler Paris Après Midi

Come for a drink and to meet and chat with other readers in Paris…

The next gathering is April 8, 2008 and every second Tuesday of the month.

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