King for a day

Last Sunday (January 6) the Friends of Sarafian Society met at the Villa Inn in San Rafael to celebrate Jacques’ 90th birthday.
I would like at this time to thank Mireille and René Di Maio for, first offering this locale for our little gathering, and second for doing such an excellent job behind the bar, in the kitchen and in the dining room.

Although Jacques’ actual birth date is December 23, we had to postpone this celebration twice due to a series of conflicting events.
But it is not the date that matters, but the intent. And the intent was always there.

We wanted to show Jacques that we care, and that he is an important member of our pétanque family. And people came from far and wide (Sonoma, Petaluma, Glen Ellen, Vacaville) to show their esteem and affection.

Pétanque is very important to Jacques. Rain or shine he is on the field and despite his respectable age, he is still a formidable player. Last week I saw him execute a masterly “carreau” that should put many of us to shame. I am much younger than Jacques and I still cannot match his prowess.

At 90, Hagop is a veteran of the Pétanque Wars and a shining example to us all.
He told me: I will never be an old man. To me, old age is always 15 years older than I am.

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As a token of our affection, about 30 of us (bearing gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh) came to pay homage to one of our most resilient senior citizen.
I want to thank all those people for bringing such a great variety of foods and beverages and I can assure you that nobody went hungry or thirsty.

Among the guests, I noticed Isabelle Sarafian naturally, Bart Zachofsky, Antonia and Stephen Paulsen, Sabine Mattei, Claudie Chourre, Tina Petitou, Gillian Summers, Bill Raffanti, Teri Sirico, Jacques Gautier, Mireille and René, Alain and Evelyne Marchand, Antoine Lofaro, Verena Rytter, Liv Kraft, Jean-Claude and Catherine Bunand, Helga Facchini, Genevieve and Jean-Claude Etallaz and Jacques Lecouturier.

January 6 being the Epiphany (and also my birthday) I thought appropriate to bring the traditional Galette des Rois (Kings’ cake) to share with everybody.

“In France people eat the “Galette des Rois” (puff pastry with almond paste). This is the Kings’ (Melchior, Caspar and Balthazar) cake, with a bean hidden inside. The person who gets the piece of cake with the bean becomes “king” for a day.”

That Sunday, there was no bean to be found but, under the cheering of the crowd, Jacques Hagop Sarafian was chosen to be our King for the day.
Long live the King!

As far as I can tell, a good time was held by all.

Thank you all for coming and honoring a guy who taught many of us the finer points of Pétanque and still can beat the pants off of most of us.

Tsnudat Shnorhavor Hagop!
Happy birthday Hagop!

And many more to come.


PS: To look at pictures of this event, turn the sound on, click on the “Home” link at the top of the page, and click again on “My photos” located on the right side of the page.


Wardrobe malfunction

It happens with a tiresome regularity.
A woman’s precarious chest scaffolding gives way, and out pops a boob.
This happened on New Year’s Eve to voluptuous Colombian star Sofia Margarita Vergara.

Malfunction, malfunction, screamed the delighted entourage. The victim of the accident looked appropriately embarrassed and, surrounded by bodyguards, beat a hasty retreat. But not before the paparazzi laying in wait took a few good shots.
If they didn’t, I believe that another unfortunate malfunction could be arranged.

Malfunctions are accidents waiting to happen and are often engineered by the “victims” or their handlers. And in showbiz there is not such thing as bad publicity.
The Wardrobe Malfunction Victims (they are always women) often wear gravity-defying outfits, and the odds are that eventually gravity will prevail.

It is to be noted that malfunctions always happen to well-endowed celebrities, and that it is often the quickest way to the evening news or the next movie contract.

Malfunctions seldom happen to male celebrities though. I wonder why?
Personally I wish that it would happen more frequently to our smug, self-serving male politicians.
These impotent SOB’s are permanently holding the country hostage and love nothing better than to parade in front of the cameras to declare that no deal can be reached with the opposition.

These people deserve a real Wardrobe Malfunction.

I wish that it would happen in particular to the smug, permanently tanned Sartorial Prince of the Republican Party.
I would be delighted to see him inadvertently drop his pants during a press conference and flee for cover under the flashes of the paparazzi.
This is the kind of malfunction I would not mind seeing or hearing about. It would truly make my day.

In France they say that ridicule kills and I wish it did. This way we could replace the entire Congress and House of Representatives with one-term Doers instead of entrenched, self-serving, do-nothing Talkers.


Vade Retro Satana

Everybody knows that a crucifix or a garlic lei will keep the Devil at bay.
But sometimes you don’t have these reliable tools handy when you most need protection from the Prince of Darkness.

devilSingle women I have been told, are especially vulnerable to Satan’s ploys. They have relied since time immemorial on the male of the specie for protection; but when widowed or divorced, they become highly susceptible to attacks.

You ought to know that Satan doesn’t work alone and relies on many surrogates to do his nefarious work. And they come under all kinds of guises.
They could look like car mechanics, plumbers, pest-control guys, financial advisers… but trained eyes can see through their cover and shoo them away.

A divorced acquaintance of mine told me that she knows what to do when under attack by the Wicked One.

When confronted or pressured by unscrupulous Satan’s henchmen, she flashes a wedding ring and quickly recites the magic formula:  Vade Retro Satana (Go back Satan). She repeats it three times and the Evil One is forced to beat an angry retreat.

These magic words also imply that if the Devil doesn’t back off, she will call her big brawny husband to deal with the matter. And when disturbed, he is not a pleasant man.

This woman told me that the ring combined with the magic incantation works wonders, and that Satan’s helpers always back away. So even though she is not technically wedded anymore, she wears the gold amulet for protection.
She doesn’t wear it all the time for fear of wearing off its magic powers, but she keeps it handy for emergencies.

I was not aware of the Golden Ring’s magic capabilities, but now that I am cognizant of the facts, I will make sure to always display it prominently.
The problem though is that when I go to sleep I always remove my wedding ring and sometimes, I forget to put it back.

I should be more careful because I am a weak person, and without my ring to protect me I could easily fall prey to the Devil’s sweet talking propositions.
So wear your ring, and to make double sure that nothing regrettable happens to you, eat and bathe in a garlic scented concoction as often as you can.

You can thank me later.