Sure, there’s a newspaper kiosque back there somewhere, but we got held up at the nougat kiosque this morning, near the Opéra Bastille.
Another dark day for the markets. Les Echos headlines on “Bourse: The Infernal Spiral,” above stark red graphs of key stock indexes over the past month. The CAC 40, it notes, is down 16 percent since the beginning of August. Ironically perhaps, Les Echos’s front page also points to a B section piece on Champagne, with the earliest harvest ever starting today after a hot, hot spring and a cool, rainy July. There are giddy rumblings about 2011 yielding a high-quality vintage. Reason to look harder for something to celebrate, then.
The other dailies are keenly aware of the ugly markets, but seem desperate to put something else on their front pages. Barack Obama dominates Libération’s “une” (page 1) in close-up, eating a soft-serve vanilla cone against the backdrop of a deep blue sky: “Un Parfum de Campagne,” A Campaign Flavor. The left-leaning daily says Obama has disappointed – “It’s the economy, species of idiot,” in Libé’s more evocative translation of the familiar phrase – but the paper seems fairly bullish on his chances for re-election, if only because of the “outrageousness” of his Republican opposition.
Le Figaro and Le Parisien page 1 photos are of Pope Benedict XVI visiting Madrid. Curiously, Le Parisien mentions the violent protests against the pontiff’s appearance on its cover, the mix of “anger and passion,” while Le Figaro’s front page notes only “Madrid: young people enthusiastically welcome the pope” (an editorial inside does take on the protesters, calling them “ridiculous”). Otherwise, above the fold, Le Figaro features “Terrorist Attacks in Israel: Eight Dead,” and notes IDF reprisals on Gaza last night.
Le Parisien, meanwhile, seems pleased with the debut of Paris Saint-Germain’s new, young, insanely expensive Argentine, Javier Pastore, showing promise in a 4-0 win last night over Luxembourg’s Differdange. That would be cause, perhaps, for a sip of that Champagne. Unless you’re a Differdange fan (and who isn’t?), and you’re off to console yourselves with some nougat. Mmmm, nougat.