The Royal Socialist and the Son of an Immigrant

Twelve Candidates Vie to Preside Over La Vie Française

The Royal Socialist and the Son of an Immigrant

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Monday, April 23, 2007
Paris, France

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Dear Parler Paris Reader,

The absolutely stunning warm sun continued to shine on Paris and in through the windows onto the table tops at La Pierre du Marais on Saturday afternoon at the three-hour workshop given by Judith Merians — “The Screenplay Pitch that Really Sells!” A large and eager group learned how to write a good “logline” (a one sentence description of a story) and construct a pitch that would really sell a script idea. Merians is a formidable instructor whose series of scriptwriting technique workshops is growing in popularity among those who “wannabe” and those who already are.

The unseasonably warm sunny weather held up for Sunday’s momentous event — the first round of the 2007 French Election. It all boiled down to a woman socialist with a contrarian name (26%) and the son of a Hungarian immigrant who takes a tough stand on immigration (31%). Go figure! The French will never cease to amaze me.

The whole world watched as almost 85% of the French voting population stood in long lines to cast their ballots compared with 58% of American registered voters who came to the polls in the 2004 November presidential race.

In my district (3rd), almost 87% came out to vote and Ségolène (“Ségo”) Royal beat Nicolas Sarkozy (“Sarko”) with 37% compared to his 29%. This district is an eclectic mix governed by a Socialist Party mayor, so it’s not surprising. When looking at the more conservative 16th, Sarkozy overwhelmingly took the lead with 64% compared to Royal’s 11% and Bayrou had a respectable showing with 16%. On the other side of town, where immigrant populations flourish, the 20th, Royal took the lead with 42% of the vote compared to Sarkozy’s 23%.

Earlier in the week, I attended a “MeetUp” at Joe Allen Restaurant to learn more about the U.S. presidential candidate, Senator Barack Obama, whose name presents (for me) a constant confusion with “Osama bin Laden.” “Quelle horreur!” The Democratic Party contest between the son of an immigrant (Obama) and a woman (Hilary Clinton) who once held court in the White House seems like a mirror image of the French presidential election.

The upcoming May 6th final vote between Ségo and Sarko is sure to rock the nation either way. At least this time around there is a choice worth considering between two underdogs — a woman and an immigrant. In the last election, when Jacques Chirac’s opponent was National Front’s Jean-Marie Le Pen, it was hardly a contest and more a vote of the lesser of two evils.

As a woman, if I could vote (permanent residency does not decree citizenship), it would be awfully tempting to cast a

ballot to help put the gender in the Elysée Palace, but drowning the state in more social programs and higher taxes goes against my capitalist nature. On the other hand, the son of an immigrant who has become “plus royal que le roi” (more Royalist than the king) scares an immigrant like me. I have this fantasy of taking Ségo’s pretty face and genitalia, combining it with Sarko’s determination for change and economic prosperity to create one brilliant force against French nature…but all I get is a drag queen with a big nose in bad fashion.

In the case of Obama and Clinton, my fantasy is reversed…should I tell you or let you use your imagination?

A la prochaine…

Adrian Leeds
Editor, Parler Paris

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Are We Contributing to the “Muséification” of Paris?
By Adrian Leeds


This Week in French Property Insider…

A recent study by the Chambre de Notaires showed that 8.1% of the Paris apartments put on the market between June 2005 and June 2006 were sold to non-resident foreigners compared with 5.7% ten years ago...FPI Subscribers Read On…

Learn how to buy property in France. French Property Insider is an e-mail newsletter from the editors of Parler Paris. Learn all the insights, recommendations, and discoveries about buying and investing in real estate in Paris and France that French Property Insider readers get every week.

For more information visit /frenchproperty/insider

Or click here to subscribe now! frenchproperty/insider/members/signup.php

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Not an FPI subscriber? You can attend the Group Consultation in Paris for 50€…or subscribe now for $49.50 and attend for free!

For more information visit: /frenchproperty/conference/

We wanted better guides.
So we wrote them.

Insider Paris Guides are a series of electronically published, downloadable guides about Paris and France written by journalists and writers who live and work in, and love, Paris.

We cover specific, niche-interest topics that are difficult to find anywhere else. Get an insider perspective on Restaurants… Making a Life… Black Culture… Expat Writers…

For more information, visit

7th Paris Poetry Workshop
May 13 – 18, 2007

Paris, France

This is your opportunity to spend five days in Paris as a poet among poets. Over the past five years, the Paris Poetry Workshop has become a tradition in the English-speaking Paris poetry community, offering poets from the U.S., Canada and Europe the opportunity to come together for a week of intensive workshops, lectures and readings led by poet Cecilia Woloch. For more information visit /frenchproperty/conference/writing/poetry_paris_2007.html or contact Cecilia Woloch at

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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 and me, Adrian Leeds.

Parler Paris Apartments offers high quality accommodations to make your stay in the City of Light as enjoyable and memorable as possible. We at Parler Paris know each and every apartment owner or manager personally, and stand behind the quality of those we represent. We understand your needs and desires, all the small details that make a rental apartment a warm and welcoming home – and a much better alternative to an impersonal hotel!

Parler Paris Apartments is administered and serviced by the same great team as Parler Paris, French Property Insider and French Property Consultation. You can trust that Parler Paris Apartments and all those with whom it is associated will do their best for your 100% guaranteed satisfaction.

Ask about our lowest rates on last-minute rentals in May on Le Provençal, Attic Lumière, Panthéon, Burgundy and more! Email:

Parler Paris Après Midi

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

The next gathering is May 15, 2007, due to the holidays, and every second Tuesday of the month.

So mark your calendars to be sure not to miss it! See /parlerparis/apresmidi.html for more details.

Parler Parlor French-English Conversation Group

Practice speaking French and English. Make friends, discuss interesting topics, learn about other cultures, progress in understanding and speaking, naturally and easily. Meets three times a week — come as often as you like!

Tuesdays 6:30 to 8 p.m.

Upstairs at La Pierre du Marais
96, rue des Archives at the corner of rue de Bretagne, 75003
3rd arrondissement, Paris
Métro Temple, République or Arts et Métier

Wednesdays 2:30 p.m. to 4 p.m.
13 passage Dauphine (entrance between rue Dauphine and rue Mazarine), 6th arrondissement
Métro Odéon, Saint-Michel, Pont Neuf

Don’t Miss a Single Session…
Meet Up at the Temporary Saturday Location (TFN)
10:30 a.m.
La Croissanterie
168 boulevard St Germain
between the garden of the Eglise St germain des Prés
and passage de la Petite Boucherie next to La Rhumerie

To Be Announced! Watch your emails or visit for the new Saturday location coming soon.


Parler Parlor is open all year long except for national and religious holidays and the week between Christmas and New Year’s

Closed May 1 for Labor Day.
Closed May 8 for Victory Day.

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