Le Chat Noir

March 20, 2002

Earlier the song "Roxanne" was playing on the radio here, and across the street I can see a trio of stores with red neon near their doorways; their names are "Sexy Lingerie Erotic Shop", "Sex Shop", and "Porno Shop".

My chair wobbles, but it's a cool chair, tarnished metal with a blue seat cushion; somehow the frame has a futuristic quality in kind of a 50's way. The tables are nice, real wood, the surface scratched up a bit. There's a plastic green Heineken ashtray, and the coffee came with a three cube sugar packet. The ashtray sits on a large rectangular coaster/advertisement featuring Desperados, a tequila-flavored beer. A red curtain hangs on the wall in front of me, adjacent to a small raised dining area that consists of two long tables. There are images of black cats everywhere, including hommages to the famous Chat Noir poster that can be found in every souvenir shop in Paris. A column near the center of the place is covered with turn of the century poster, and a tan sofa surrounds the base.

For a while the TV was turned on and everyone listened to the news before the volume was lowered and pop hits from the past 30 years reigned once again. In fact, when I came into the place, "Hotel California" was playing. The glass doors near me have been open a little bit the whole time, but just now the waiter acknowledged the sun outside (it turned out to be fleeting) by opening the doors wide, letting in a slightly chilly breeze. A German-sounding tourist asked me if I knew english and then pointed to a photo of the Arch de Triomph on the edge of his map and asked how to get there. Matted and framed drawings of people I don't recognize from this distance hang above the bar. In the back of the place is an unused flippers machine, not even turned on.

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Le Chat Noir

68 Boulevard de Clichy

75018 Paris

Metro: Pigalle

Phone: 01 46 06 94 28

 

Price of an expresso: 2 euros

Sugar: packet of three cubes

 

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Copyright © 2002 David Sadegh.
Please send your questions or comments to: david@undergroundparis.com