Hot and cold

What do you do when your mate is afflicted by a disorder known as “the hotties”? The symptoms: she is getting uncomfortably hot when I am shivering, and insists on keeping all windows open, regardless of the weather conditions. It has been a Homeric struggle between the Bushwoman and the Eskimo.

Would you believe that she is also prone to frolic “au naturel” when I am quivering in flannel shirts and long johns? Well, Your Honor, this is my predicament… my Way of the Cross… and I hope that you will show some sympathy for my kettle of fish.

There can be a snowstorm or a blizzard raging outside, and she will still insist on letting some “fresh air” in. Her internal thermostat is obviously out of kilter and needs to be fixed… But she does not think so. She would rather believe that I am a weakling who needs to be toughened up… and molded into her own image.

Well, my friends, I’ll have you know that I am no namby-pamby and capable of extraordinary feats. My extreme modesty prevents me from enumerating all my past accomplishments here, but take my storyteller word for it.

It is said that opposites attract, and that’s probably what happened to us. She is hot and I am cool, and we both agreed to disagree on that subject. But attraction has its limits… especially in the hotness department. The question is “Can a hot lady be cool?”

Thinking of it, this might be the wrong way to express my concerns since hot babes usually parade in micro-bikinis. The problem is that they are hot and cool at the same time. It is very confusing for men, especially for a slow-witted guy like me.

To my defense, I should also say that I was born and raised in a temperate, civilized, climate… not in some desolate snow-covered acres where the temperature hovers between 26 and 16 degrees in winter. When you are used to live in freezing climate, you are naturally hot anywhere else…

“I don’t like to commit myself about heaven and hell – you see, I have friends in both places.” ~ Mark Twain

 Like Mark Twain, I am sure that I also have friends in both places. Probaly more in Hell… But since I am always cold, Hell might be more tolerable to me; for her though, the heat is going to be “hellish”. And I don’t think that you can haggle with the Prince of Darkness…

I understand that Hell might be a bit uncomfortable, but socially speaking, you meet much more interesting people there than among the stuck-up do-gooders of Heaven.

That’s all for today folks. I hope that you empathize with my predicament and side with me regarding this hot issue.


PS: I discovered a few lost photos on my little Canon camera. Check the last event to see them.

A family affair

With a grand total of 23 participants, last Sunday’s tournament in San Rafael felt more like a family affair than an FPUSA sanctioned competition; it was nevertheless spirited and fun.

The event was billed a “mêlée », and partners were semi-randomly assigned. I inherited a friendly young fellow named Quintin Mecke (who oddly enough reminded me of Herge’s Tintin) and proved to be quite an accurate pointer. We didn’t do particularly well (2 wins and 3 losses) but we had fun and that’s what counts.

Shama and her dog Tchai (?) kept track of the scores and we are grateful for their cooperation.

Two games were played before lunch, and three after. Among the competitors were 3 members of the Danielson family and judging by the results, they did very well. Thank you, Abby, by the way for pressuring your relatives into play with us.

The number of players might have been small, but the quality proved to be above average. On our first game, we had the (mitigated) pleasure of playing against Richard Bell and Loël McPhee, and they murdered us 0/13. I understand that Richard spent the last 3 weeks practicing his shooting 10 hours a day with only 2 hours of sleep per night… and it paid off.

We also played against Joe Danielson who (as a newcomer) had the impertinence to clobber us 5/13. Abby, I hold you responsible for your brother’s cheeky behavior.

On our 5th game, Tintin and I faced Liza and Liv and they also had their way with us. Liv pointed extremely well, and Liza acted as the merciless executioner. They shamelessly beat us 13/5.

This tournament did not have a Concours and a Consolante per se, and the results were tabulated according to the number of wins and the minimum number of points accumulated during the event.

This also meant that unfortunately, I didn’t get a chance to take any pictures during this event. It is difficult to wear two different hats during any proceeding and I should have stayed on the sidelines instead of playing, but the cochonnet (piglet) always exercises a strong pull and I could not resist its appeal… And my aching back is paying the price this morning…

Here are the final results:

Joe Danielson & Stephanie Wilkinson

1st place: Joe Danielson & Stephanie Wilkinson      $52.00 each
2nd place: Richard Bell & Loël McPhee                           $38.00 each
3rd place: Eddy Pay & Abby Danielson                            $25.00 each


PS: A very few pictures at the usual place.

Blogging your little heart away

“Don’t procrastinate. If you want to blog, then blog.” ― Fritz Chery

The other day, somebody asked me how long I had been producing my blog… Looking back, I was surprised to suddenly realize that I had been doing this for at least 15 years… Because what else, besides drinking Pernod and playing pétanque was I going to do in my retirement? Some people are so miserable after stopping work that they will do anything to get out of the house and break the monotony of their newly found “farniente”.

But not me. I never regretted leaving my 8 to 5 routine. Like many of the working stiffs, I didn’t choose my previous occupation… it chose me  and I simply put up with it. So, leaving a large corporation where I was just a small cog in the machine meant very little to me.

To be happy in retirement, you need a hobby and luckily, I have always been fond of writing. In elementary and middle school, we had to regularly pen some essay (une rédaction) about a certain topic. Most of the kids dreaded this, but I loved it. The words came easily to me… probably because of all the swashbuckling stories I had devoured in my younger years.

What French kid doesn’t remember the famous line from Paul Féval’s novel Le Bossu (the Hunchback)Si tu ne viens pas à Lagardère, Lagardère ira à toi! » It is part of the French catechism, and you could be banned from eating croissants for life if you don’t memorize this.

Blogging is strictly a labor of love because it is hard, time-consuming, and not remunerated. But I don’t care because “I cannot afford to waste my time making money.”  Louis Agassiz

Most magazines stories are written by entities totally unknown to you. As far as you know, the story could have been written by a smart robot. But the reading becomes a little more interesting when you know the author. You have seen him, you have talked to him, and it is easier to form an opinion about that person.

“You can’t make a fan of everyone. Stay true to your story, characters, music, art, or whatever it is you do, and fuck everyone else who doesn’t like it. Life isn’t perfect.” ― Ann Marie Frohoff

 It sounds a little harsh, but to survive in the writing game, you need to have a thick skin and ignore naysayers. Fortunately, after many years of hard labor, it seems that Le Cochonnet Marin (The Flying Piglet) is finally taking off. I am getting more readers and more subscribers every day, and this warms the cockles of my little heart.

Keep up the good work and help me give Time magazine a serious run for its money.