Acupuncture's Bang slig-backs
courtesy of Acupuncture
Spring fever
by Georgina Oliver

Hey, there! You've heard of disco fever"s comeback. You saw Spike Lee's "Jungle Fever." And Saturday night fever jerks memories too... Now, spring fever's on its way: an unnerving mix of "up" and "down" mood swings, typical of "Paris in the spring."
That's just it. Like an egg about to hatch. Like a bird about to burst into song... You're all set to spring into action in those irresistible running shoes featured on Nike's "boing" metro billboards. But, the question is: D'you have the energy to 'just do it"? Right now??

New Shoes
Everybody knows the best way to feel right at the onset of spring is to get new shoes. What could be worse than an old pair of sweaty sneakers, come that first ray of sunshine you've been daydreaming about for months? Brit "trainer" brand Acupuncture ( specializes in hyper-creative footwear. Among this season's styles: a laid-back sling-back named Bange (baby).

1, 2, 3...
Where are you headed, in those "springy" shoes? Probably to "1 2 3," Etam's three-story concept store at 146 rue de Rivoli (M° Louvre-Rivoli), that sent out bright pink "save the date" cards to announce its très funky flowers launch party. Nextdoor, a brand-new multilevel Adidas sports emporium lures Generation Y customers in with umpteen extras. A kiddies cinema. PlayStation consoles. CD earphones.

Or, how about sprinting to a hip springtime brunch? Yet another concept store... Résonances has what it takes to create the "basic breakfast" ambience: crockery and cutlery, pots and pans, tableware and bedclothes... Even aromatherapy products.
(Bercy Village branch: 9 cour St-Emilion, 12e, tel: 01 44 73 82 82)

Naturellement !
One of marketing's current quirks is the fact that certain everyday expressions can't be used in promotion material, because they're already "taken." Take "bonheur" (happiness). That's already patented. The organizers of an "alternative living" expo covering everything from biodynamic gardening and organic cuisine to holistic cosmetics, had to rename their event "Naturellement !," as the word "Naturel !" already "belongs" elsewhere,
(Mar 15-19, Espace Auteuil, place de la Porte d'Auteuil, 16e, tel: 01 45 56 09 09, 30F/15F)

Plastic Prototype
Ready to see life in a new light? Want a change of decor? How about reconsidering plastic? A French organization called Profession Plastique now promotes this oft scoffed material via a colorful tri-monthly magazine titled Entrée en Matière. On the cover of this spring's issue: François Azambourg, a 30-something designer, and his inflatable pouffe that doubles as a lamp. This award-winning prototype incorporates a luminous 3D fabric which also ensures the seat's rigidity.

Spring Chorus
Now you've bought those "sunny weather" togs. For instance, one of Gas' Riviera look shirts... You're no doubt in the mood to go out. The answer? Chorus! des Hauts-de-Seine. Each spring, this banlieues music fest turns Paris' western outskirts into a springboard for young talent. A combo of chanson and urban sounds, Chorus! schedules contests like Starting Rock, along with "big name" concerts, including Cesaria Evora's March 20 gig at Reuil-Malmaison's Théâtre André Malraux.
(Mar 13 to Apr 1, reservations: CNIT, 01 47 74 51 11)

From Mistinguett...
If you had something more foxy in mind, Jerôme Savary's "Mistinguett" revue is just the ticket. Starring Liliane Montevecchi, "alive and kicking" as France's quintessentially Parigot music-hall belle, this "evening of pure entertainment" opens at the equally legendary
Opéra Comique on March 1. (50-190F/Bookings: 0 825 00 00 58)

...To Virtual Elvis
On the '50s fever front, the bizarrest show in town has to be "Elvis the Concert" at the Porte de Versaille's Palais des Sports. Posthumous Presley on a giant screen, with his original musicians playing for real.
(8:30pm, Mar 20/Tickets: 0 825 038 039, 370F/295F/220F)

Picasso 'n Madonna
This spring, two sexually-empowered, millennium icons "give us fever." One with supremely exhibitionist artworks... Go see Picasso érotique at the Galerie nationale du Jeu de Paume (to May 20), and at the Patrice Trigano gallery (to Mar 17, 4 bis rue des Beaux-Arts, 6e, tel: 01 46 34 15 01). The other, with unabashedly horny and hype, relentlessly recurring... electronic syncopations. Madonna's latest release is a maxi CD comprising four "final" remixes of "Don't Tell Me." Dead sexy... I'm telling you!


Technology Frenzy
Hot on the heels of easyEverything's opening wingding, here comes another mega webcenter, where Parisians can log on and surf 24 hours-a-day. Near Saint-Lazare mainline station, Clicktown opens mid-March (15 rue de Rome, 8e). Eager-beaver technology freaks will also be zeroing in on Siemens' latest smart — MP3/dictaphone/multimedia card — mobile. Code name: SL45

Theater Tribute
In many ways... as moving as Charles Trénet's recent passing away, this documentary exhibition devoted to the Festival d'Avignon's founder is definitetly a theater buffs' "must-see."
(To Apr 1, "Jean Vilar, de Montparnasse au Palais des Papes," Musée du Montparnasse, 21 av du Maine, 15e, tel: 01 42 22 91 96)

Total Regression
Walking past "Zéro de conduite," a café with-a-doorbell, in the distinctly intello 6th arrondissement, you immediately sense something strange is afoot. Regulars are drinking their tutti-frutti cocktails (with names like "Peter Pan") out of babies bottles, in a disconcertingly dim kiddies cartoon setting.
(Tue-Thu 6pm to 1am, Fri-Sat 6pm to 2am, Sun 6pm to 1am, 14 rue Jacob, reservations: 01 46 34 26 35)

Saint Patrick's Treat
Throwing a party on March 17, going on pub crawl, or just staying in for a nostalgic Celtic soirée? Featuring traditional ballads and jigs, Sony Music's "Spirit of Ireland" compilation is just the treat for Saint Patrick's.

"Alternative living" expo

Spring music fest poster
courtesy of ADIAM92

Azambourg with his dual-purpose lamp

Gas' Spring / Summer 2001 look
© GAS 2001

courtesy of Succession Picasso 2001 / Jeu de Paume

Madonna's latest remix
courtesy of WEA

Jean Vilar, Avignon, 1953
courtesy of Maurice Atzinger

Siemens' latest smart mobile