Category Archives: culture

La Cuisine

There’s a lot to be said about French food, but the south is not where the best dishes originated. So while Nice is not a culinary hotspot, it has its high points. Among them are soupe de poisson (fish soup), … Continue reading

Posted in culture, expat, expat life, food, France, Nice, France | 7 Comments

Les Fumeurs

You can’t be a non-smoker and not be shocked, saddened and sickened by the popularity of cigarettes in France. In some French minds, smoking cigarettes is one of many indicators of Gallic superiority to Americans, with their puritanically oppressive anti-smoking … Continue reading

Posted in culture, expat, expat life, France, Nice, France | 16 Comments


A few years ago, somewhere, I discovered the Breton photographer Guy Le Querrec. I was smitten. Splendidly observed for telling gesture and detail, often catching people being human in humorous ways, his photographs can be visited again and again. So … Continue reading

Posted in Brittany, culture, Photography | 1 Comment

Ozu’s “Late Spring”

Some time ago I watched Yasujiro Ozu’s “Late Spring” again, in part to examine the parallels between that beautiful film from 1949 and a French one released in 2008, “35 Shots of Rum” by Claire Denis. In the bonus section … Continue reading

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Reading Robert Calasso’s “Tiepolo Pink” this week, I was encouraged to give some thought to that very Italian quality, sprezzatura.  Calasso uses it as a conceit, or a prism through which to view the entire body of work by the … Continue reading

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The ending

One winter night among friends recently the unthinkable was spoken: it is quite possible the last 50 years or so in the West have been an anomaly in the history of humankind, not to be repeated in our or our … Continue reading

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Musings on Bloomsday

Today is Bloomsday, the date of Leopold Bloom’s meanderings and musings through Dublin as created by James Joyce in the great 20th century novel, “Ulysses.” I’ve been revisiting some of my youthful passions lately — France, European painting, foreign art … Continue reading

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