Paris/France and… colors

Per our May 4, 2019, post, “Paris/France and…” is a new series wherein “and” leads us to categories (such as food groups, the classical elements, etc.) whose subcategories link to the city/country we know and love. Today’s entry focuses on Paris/France and Colors, per the spectrum that might have hung in your high-school physics class back in Blue Ash, Idaho or Yellow Pine, Alabama or Red Lick, Texas.


If you have not visited the legendary Moulin Rouge (“Red Windmill”) cabaret in person (or even if you have), certainly do so via their website. By the time you’ve clicked on absolutely everything--that’s: absolutely everything--that’s clickable on, you’ll feel as if you’ve just been treated to a whirlwind masterclass on Parisian history, culture, cuisine, facts, and figures (the latter in the numerical and, appropriately, corporeal sense). Whew!

And from author Dale Gershwin:

“On her way to the stairs Leslie …

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French Economics: an industrial rebirth?

Factories are timidly returning to the French landscape. In the first six months of 2018 thirty five of them cropped up! While this doesn’t constitute a full-fledged dawning of a bold new day, it does offers a few encouraging rays of light. The Hexagon (that’s France to the French) lost more than 600 factories in the past ten years. In 2009 alone 224 were abandoned. Neighboring Germany is a completely different story. In this same period, 2008 to 2018, Germany’s industrial production increased by 25%, while France’s industrial activity declined by 3 % according to Trendeo, a firm which monitors French employment and investments. But now with these new factories we have a a promise of better days ahead. A further indication of this renaissance can be seen by taking a look at the annual trade fair Made in France. MIF, the brainchild of Fabienne Delahaye, launched its first edition in 2012 with 80 stands and 15,000 visitors. The 2018 edition held in November at the Porte de V…

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The traffic report for highways in France is called Bison Futé

Traffic report for Highways in France or Bison Futé

Bison Futé or the "Clever Bison", is the national traffic website for Highways in France and now also available as a phone app. The Bison gives the current incident reports (accidents, closures, construction) for all highways in France as well as predictions of traffic volume for holiday weekends. It is a very helpful site for avoiding notorious traffic jams on French roads. But why on Earth is the traffic reporting system called "Bison Futé"? The "clever" part makes sense as the clever traveler avoids traffic, but why the "bison"? Well apparently the alternative suggestions for a mascot were a dolphin, giraffe, bird, and rat, so why not a bison? Bison Futé is an eye-catching, smart, affable American Indian, invented by the publicity man named Daniel Robert in 1976 as a gimic to get people's attention as France rolled out a campaign to encourage people to use alternative routes and depart at different times…

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Paris/France and Body Parts

Welcome to a new series, which we’re calling “Paris/France and…” --the “and” being categories (such as colors, food groups, the classical elements, and more) whose subcategories we are going to link to the city/country we know and love. And given their reputation for gratification (physical and intellectual), where better to start than with…Paris/France and Body Parts (top down, of course)?

head: Say “head” and you think (with your brain) of “brain.” Say “brain” and you think of “intellect.” Say “intellect” and you have to have been living in a (non-Internet-enabled) cave for the past at least 300 years not to think of the stereotypical Parisian intellectual spending hours at a café, cigarette dangling from wine-kissed lips (this would have to be on the café’s terrasse [outside area] nowadays, as smoking inside cafés, places of business, the métro, etc. has been banned), rambling on and on and on and on and on in intense, profound, arm-gesture-enhance…

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Why are the European election panels empty of posters?

The European Election is the second biggest election in the world in terms of number of voters, only India has more. The objective is to elect the 751 members of the European parliament, thus it concerns 28 countries. There are 2686 candidates in France alone. Each list from all of the 34 parties presenting candidates must have 79 members alternating strictly between men and women. The lists are organized vertically following their leader. This is a proportional election, so according to the percentage of the vote won by the party the first X candidates of the list will go to parliament. In France a party must have at least 5% in order to win any seats; other countries do not have minimums or have lower minimum percentages. The French lists are required to have 79 members each just in case one list sweeps the vote and thus wins all of France seats (hard to imagine!). There is a complication (not just one) this year stemming from the Brexit. France currently has 75 seats, b…

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Paris Churches of Expat Communities

Paris Churches of Expat Communities - Paris and the region Joining the social fabric in your new home is part of settling in. Of course you want to integrate into France and meet French people, but it is always pleasant, and some would say important, to join fellow expats or folks from your own country to pursue your favorite activities as well. Just like sometimes you need comfort food you also need comfort time in your own language, activities and customs. Churches and synagogues in Paris and the region are great resources providing community, study and discussions, lunches, youth groups, fairs, choirs and volunteer opportunities just like at home. Many schools and universities have alumni clubs in Paris. Here below is a non-exhaustive list of Paris churches of the expat community in the area. For a list of clubs associations see this article  Other ideas and activities for meeting people in this article Worship in your own language: St. George's Anglican Churc…
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French Entrepreneur Families

French entrepreneur families

Some of the most famous brands in France were initially and often still are family businesses. A few even headed by women! Meet five historic French entrepreneur families.

The Haviland family: Haviland Porcelain

This family is a real franco-american immigration tale! A Norman family since the time of the English invasion, they left France for the US in 1648 to join the Quaker colony in Providence, RI, then generations later a certain David returned to France to start producing and exporting porcelain. David's son, Theodore, whose name was backstamped in on the early Haviland porcelain, was born in France in 1842. David was 100% American by several generations and knew no French, nor how to make porcelain. First he exported some porcelain pieces he purchased in France to his brother's shops in NYC. It sold well, so he began actual production in styles that were more adapted to American tastes. Then the US Civi…

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Finding a job: Work papers France

Work papers France Finding a job in France most often requires a work permit if you are from an non-EU country. There are several ways to go about this task and none of them are easy or straight forward (rest assured France isn’t picking on you, it is just as difficult for a French person to go to a non-EU country). But here are a few suggestions for the persistent to obtain work papers for France. See our Glossary of French-English Employment terminology For Americans Founded in 1896, the French-American Chamber of Commerce (FACC) is the country’s premier organization for promoting trade and investment between the United States and France. In the spirit of reciprocity and international understanding, the FACC training program for Americans in France brings together qualified young Americans aspiring to work in France, and companies interested in hosting them. The FACC has a visa program for 18-35 year olds who are currently in university studies or have just graduated. …
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