It is evening at the Brasserie Lipp, on the Boulevard Saint-Germain in Paris.
The fall after-theater crowd shrugs off furs and foulards, as waiters take balletic strides in ankle-length black-and-whites, balancing plates of choucroute, andouille, and Baltic herring Bismarck. Signs warn against feeding les chiens at the table, or expecting to pay by check. Painted angels on the ceiling, yellowed from ancient smoke, watch over Art Deco ceramic panels of cockatoos frolicking in palms and prickly pears. Flouting the rules, a lapdog pants on the red moleskin banquette. Everything is multiplied in wall-sized mirrors, such that among the thin columns and glass dividers, there is almost nowhere to look chez Lipp without seeing some version of yourself.
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Is This Story Real? is a Tablet special profile of Holocaust survivor Imré Kovács and his controversial epic memoir of wartime heroism. A mild-mannered Hungarian waiter at a café in Paris—was he also a Jewish resistance fighter who infiltrated the Waffen-SS and abetted the Avengers in their campaign to bring vigilante justice to Nazis after the war? To find out, read Is This Story Real? in its entirety, with multimedia, for free, by clicking here.