Sunday, March 23, 2008

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Note to self: do not bring short-shorts to Paris

Elaine Sciolino bids a fond farewell to one of the best sinecures in journalism -- the Paris desk of the New York Times. Sciolino is a fine reporter/observer, and is not afraid to reveal the following embarrassing anecdote:

Donít Wear Jogging Clothes to Buy a Pound of Butter

Rules govern even the smallest activities. I was making chocolate chip cookies one Saturday afternoon and ran out of butter. Dusted with flour, still in my morning jogging clothes, I dashed out to the convenience store up the street. The problem was that it is not just any street. Itís the Rue du Bac, one of the most chic places to see and be seen on Saturdays. I heard my name called and turned to face a senior Foreign Ministry official, dressed in pressed jeans and a soft-as-butter leather jacket, wearing an amused look, and carrying a small Nespresso shopping bag.

We went to a corner cafe for a drink. The Swedish ambassador and his wife stopped as they were riding by on their bikes. Both were in tailored tweed blazers, slim pants and loafers. Then Robert M. Kimmitt, the deputy treasury secretary, walked by.

He and my foreign ministry friend joked that my style didnít match the setting. I made the point that it was my neighborhood and I could dress however I wanted. But as my French women friends told me afterward, jogging clothes (shoes included) are to be removed as soon as oneís exercise is over.

[Memo from the staff: don't wear short-shorts, period!--ed.]

posted by Dan on 03.23.08 at 12:32 PM


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