Joanne and David Burke - "PARIS NOIR, African Americans in the City of Light"
In 2016 they launched in their comprehensive one-hour documentary film PARIS NOIR, African Americans in the City of Light, the culmination of a 15 year labor of love. In 2017, Joanne and David launched a book to go with PARIS NOIR with title When African Americans Came to Paris: A Film Companion.
Join us to view the film and hear about the making of!
Tuesday, December 12, 2017
...and the second Tuesday of every month 3 p.m. to 5 p.m.
What do I know? I've never had a Christmas tree in my house (my mother thought it totally sacrilegious) and wouldn't have a clue about how to buy or decorate one, but it still came as a big surprise when I saw FLAT trees for sale at a pop-up Christmas tree merchant on the corner of rues Vieille du Temple and Quatre-Fils in the Marais. It was a first for me.
How clever for small apartments! I almost wanted to buy one for myself, although I knew my mother would be turning over in her grave if I did. My daughter isn't as guilt-ridden as her mother and has installed a tree in her New York apartment on occasion (decorated with whatever she could find handy), but like most who live in small spaces, find it tough to fit in a real one with a broad expanse. What I learned is that not only are there totally flat trees like these, but half-wall trees, much like my "demi-lune" parasol on the balcony at Le Matisse, my apartment in Nice.
So, the question I ask you is: Does it make a difference to the meaning of the tradition if the tree isn't real or flattened like this? No one seems to know why having a Christmas tree is a tradition, anyway. It's just DONE without thinking why. There's all sorts of speculation, but it seems that the first person to have brought a tree into a house, in the way we know it today, may have been Martin Luther, the 16th-century German preacher. The story goes: "One night before Christmas, he was walking through the forest and looked up to see the stars shining through the tree branches. It was so beautiful, that he went home and told his children that it reminded him of Jesus, who left the stars of heaven to come to earth at Christmas."
Nonetheless, I am sure a fresh tree smells yummy and when decorated is quite pretty and festive, hence the true fun and spirit of the tradition. You must think I am a total alien for being so clueless about Christmas trees, but I'll bet you don't know as much about lighting Chanukah candles as I do! (Or maybe you know a whole lot more!) But, that's where I shine. I scored an 18th-or 19th-century eastern European Chanukiah (candelabra) in the "Shuk Hapishpishim" (flea market) in Tel Aviv in 1980 that gets my Chanukah candle-lighting business every year. Candles can be purchased in several of the markets in and around rue des Rosiers -- the multi-colored ones that burn fast and drip lots of wax. (You have to sing your songs and say your prayers over the candles before they melt before your very eyes.) Chanukah starts this coming December 12th, right after our Après Midi gathering, so perhaps we who attend should all light the candles together!?
FREEDOM TO RIDE
What's with the new bikes strewn all over the sidewalks? Offensively ugly green GoBee bikes are everywhere and anywhere. The city is already torn up all over town making way for new bike paths and at the same time, this new fleet of bikes has hit the streets: Gobee Bikes. I've tripped over a few already and while it's not as bad as stepping in dog doodie, it's a kind of littering (n'est-ce pas?) and quite frankly, very unpleasant to have to maneuver around them on the narrow Marais sidewalks. Fortunately, I'm not wielding a baby stroller! That could turn into a disaster!
Here's how it works: you download the app, find a bike anywhere you can, scan a QR code to unlock it, ride your heart out, park it in what they say is a "responsibly designated spot" (meaning anywhere), lock it up and then you pay 50 centimes for every 30 minutes.
It's competition to the city's Vélib system, with it being free the first 30 minutes, but you can literally drop one off anywhere and trust me, they do. So get ready Parisians, bikes are about to take over our lives and we could end up like Amsterdam with no room for us pedestrians! Help!
P.S. Be sure not to miss next Tuesday's Après Midi gathering, December 12th from 3 to 5 p.m., when Joanne and David Burke, authors, film writers/director-producer-editors, show their documentary "PARIS NOIR, African Americans in the City of Light."
ADRIAN LEEDS GROUP APARTMENTS
Welcome to your home in Paris. Home is how you will feel in a private apartment in Paris that has the "seal of approval" from Parler Paris Apartments, Paris Sharing and me, Adrian Leeds.
One of the best locations in Paris! This gorgeous two-bedroom haven is found on Ile de la Cité, one of the two islands that sit in the center of the Seine River in the heart of the city. It is just steps from the short pedestrian bridge leading to the other island, the Ile Saint-Louis, just behind Notre Dame, and the apartment offers a view of the towers of the world's most famous church.
This exquisite apartment is on the third floor (European) of a well-maintained 18th-century building. Its modern elevator makes it simple to access and you’ll be glad that you did! Beautifully decorated and fully-equipped with every comfort you could desire, this is the ideal home away from home in Paris.
Copyright 2017 Adrian Leeds® The Adrian Leeds Group® Adrian Leeds® is a registered trademark in France. INPI: March 10, 2006, #063416238. Adrian Leeds Group® is a registered trademark in France. INPI: December 22, 2014, # 14/4144068. Anyone using these brand names or any kind of advertising without permission may be prosecuted. AdrianLeeds.com, AdrianLeedsGroup.com and AdrianLeedsEnterprises.com are reserved domains for exclusive use of Adrian Leeds® and Adrian Leeds Group®.