Le François Coppee

July 12, 2002 - 1:00 p.m.

The waiter cannot seem to control his facial expressions, unless he is deliberately grimacing at everyone he serves. The place is big, spacious, and mostly empty even at this lunchtime hour. The man sitting in front of me has finished his ham sandwich and is now drinking a coffee into which he has dropped the small bar of dark chocolate that comes with the coffee here. The coffee also comes with a packet of sugar cubes, and the coffee cup and saucer have matching black stripes around the edges. The cup also has a bit of a black stripe on the handle and "Le François Coppee" written on the side, the words forming in a slight arch. The chairs are wooden with plush green seat cushions, and the tables have light wood tops with fake wood in the center.

Down the main aisle of the café hang giant drooping flower petal lights with large spherical illuminated centers. Smaller versions of these lights are above the bar, fastened to long sheets of metal that looks oxidized in parts. The man in front of me has left and now I see a woman he was obscuring who is eating from a plate that consists mostly of french fries, which she is finishing off steadily with her knife and fork. No wonder the place doesn't seem to be crowded, the food here doesn't look very appetizing at all. But the atmosphere is nice. There is a large plant or amalgamation of plants nearby -- to match the chair cushions, no doubt. Otherwise the rest of the café is mostly light brown. There is green in the umbrellas interspersed among the outside tables and green in the plastic caning of the accompanying outside wicker chairs. But light browns overall, the pleasing color of wood and sand.

The place seems to think itself important enough to have a website, hanging from the awning is the address: "www.francois-coppee.com." It seems newspapers are available here as well, for those without. I see a man with a newspaper that is stuck on a stick like a collection of flimsy, typeset-laden flags.

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Le François Coppee
Metro: Duroc
Website: www.francois-coppee.com

Price of an espresso: 2.10 euros
Sugar: packet of sugar cubes

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Copyright © 2002 David Sadegh.
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