August 11, tournament

Yesterday, La Pétanque Marinière hosted the 2013 Northwest Regional Select Triples tournament.
This tournament was sanctioned by the FPUSA and carried very generous purses.
As the name indicates, participating players were allowed to pick their teammates and the outcome of the tournament hinged largely on the caliber of the selected players.
And yesterday there was an abundance of very good players.

Fifteen (15) triplettes registered to compete and were as follows:

  1. Ed Porto/Mike Cooper/Bleys Rose
  2. Jean-Michel Poulnot/Bernard Passmar/Paul Koss
  3. Jean-Claude Etallaz/Carolina Jones/Etienne Rijkheer
  4. Henry Wessel/Calvert Barton/Hendrik Idzerda
  5. Paul Moua/Ly Pao Nhia Yi/Poe Lee
  6. Alain Efron/Francois Moser/Christine Cragg
  7. Pao Lee/Chan Yiong/Kue Lee
  8. Narin Garrett/Erin Mc/Barbara Hall
  9. Mickey Coughlin/Nicole Coughlin/Holly Sammons
  10. Alain Gusella/J-C Bunand/Mireille Di Maio
  11. Gilles Karpowicz/Carlos Couto/Pierre Palaneado
  12. John Morris/Marie-Ann Curley/Pierre Bremont
  13. Mona Lee/Bee Moua/Phominik Lee
  14. Yor Lee/Lee Lee/Kao Lee
  15. Patrick Vaslet/Hans Kurz/Kevin Evoy

The tournament was run by Verena Rytter.

Three thirteen points (mercifully timed) games were played before lunch to separate the hotshots from the average players.

Eight teams qualified for the Concours, and seven teams for the Consolante.

My own team was composed of Christine Cragg, Francois Moser and myself and I am sorry to say that we didn’t do very well.

We lost our 1st game 8/13 against Yor Lee/Lee Lee/Kao Lee
We ignominiously lost our 2nd game 2/13 against Alain Gusella/J-C Bunand/Mireille Di Maio. Such a miserable score is always difficult to swallow.
We barely lost our 3rd (timed) game 11/12 against Gilles Karpowicz/Carlos Couto/Pierre Palaneado after leading 11/9

We ended up in the Consolante.

On our first (and last) Consolante game we barely lost (11/13) against Paul Moua/Ly Pao Nhia Yi/Poe Lee and we were out of the tournament.

We played better (or were luckier) in our last 2 games, but losing four consecutive games in a row is a rather demoralizing experience and I never pretended to be a good loser.
Losing also tends to emphasize fatigue and after our last defeat I decided to go home and like Achilles, brood in my tent.

I left the field around 3:30 p.m. and didn’t bother to take any pictures. Sorry about that.

FINAL RESULTS provide by Verena Rytter


115_1598 - Version 2

1st place: Gilles Karpowicz/Carlos Couto/Pierre Palaneado – $70 for each player
2nd place: Pao Lee/Chan Yiong/Kue Lee – $50 for each player
3rd place: Mickey Coughlin/Nicole Coughlin/Holly Sammons – $30 for each player


1st place: Paul Moua/Ly Pao Nhia Yi/Poe Lee – $30 for each player
2nd place: Jean-Claude Etallaz/Carolina Jones/Etienne Rijkheer – $20 for each player

Please excuse my uncertain spelling of all the Asian names.




Every year, comes August 1st, millions of French city dwellers engage in an ancient pagan ritual.
At the height of the summer season, they jump in their cars and head for sacred sites (the beaches) to worship Ra, the God of the Sun.

French Riviera

Like great animal migrations, they all depart at the exact same time to trek to overcrowded, overbooked and overpriced locations.
I said, “trek” because getting there is a long and arduous journey that should be planned like a military operation.

At the height of that period, French freeways are choked with cars, and after being trapped in traffic jams for a few hours, would-be vacationers are often reaching their breaking point. Like live grenades they are ready to explode.
On the Great Summer Exodus, human and mechanical wrecks litter the pilgrimage roads.

Watching this mess on television, I still wonder why everybody feels compelled to leave at the same time to go to places that are swarming with humanity.
Isn’t the whole purpose of a vacation to escape the madding crowds? To go to a quiet little place and decompress?

But the French (ah the Cultural Exception…) seem to delight gathering in overcrowded beaches and overpopulated restaurants.
There, the head of a family, finally reaching his breaking point will probably blow his top and make a scene.
Because the French are innate complainers. No matter what, they have to complain.
They cannot help it; it is in their genes.

But the nagging question remains: why don’t these fools take a vacation in April or September when resorts are less crowded and prices more reasonable?

The answer is likely to be “because of the kids”. During the summer the little darlings are granted a leave of absence from juvenile hall, and their parents (like it or not) feel obligated to spend a few days with them.

Personally I don’t think that none of the parties involved care much about this arrangement.
The kids resent their parents for preventing them from having a good time (smoking and drinking) and vice-versa. At least that was the way it was when I was a young lad.

The reasonable alternative to this dilemma could be summer camps.
You unload the kids to a summer camp and take a separate vacation. Jailbirds and jailers alike both need a reprieve.

But this solution might seem too simplistic for overwrought French thinkers.
To make life worthwhile, they occasionally need to atone for their innumerable sins, and family summer vacations are exactly the kind of penance they know they deserve.

Hence, the annual, immutable nerve-racking Great Summer Exodus!



Beaux discours et ronds de jambe

Après avoir passé plus de 40 ans dans les tranchées de la Grande Guerre du Travail, je suis maintenant béatement au vert.
Je ne travaille plus et du haut de ma tour d’ivoire je peux observer a loisir les fourmis ouvrières qui se hâtent mélancoliquement vers leurs travaux.

Je me lève généralement à l’aube, prépare mon petit-déjeuner et prend ensuite le pouls du monde sur mon ordinateur.
Je lis d’abord les nouvelles locales en anglais et après cela je jette un coup d’œil sur les informations françaises.
Le Parisien, Le Monde, Le Point, Le Figaro, Libération, tout le monde y va de son édito.

En France, j’ai l’impression que l’on fait beaucoup de beaux discours mais que  peu de choses (à part les grèves évidemment) se produisent; les parlementaires ont dû faire des voyages d’études aux Etats-Unis où le sénat est depuis longtemps immobilisé dans une impasse fratricide.

Mais en France cependant, il y a plus de partis politiques qu’aux Etats-Unis et évidemment plus de porte-paroles et plus d’opinions.
Sur 60 millions de français, il doit y avoir au moins 30 millions d’opinions différentes et les gens ne se gênent pas pour les exprimer.
En France on s’indigne beaucoup et souvent, mais concrètement il ne se passe pas grand-chose.
Un peu comme en 1936 ou les français s’indignaient beaucoup au sujet de la guerre d’Espagne pendant que les Allemands s’indignaient peu et réarmaient a outrance.

En France, on parle beaucoup du chômage et de l’insécurité (qui vont d’ailleurs main dans la main) mais personne n’a le courage d’instaurer des mesures énergiques pour résoudre ces gros problèmes.
Les Français se veulent intellectuels et au lieu d’agir ils préfèrent palabrer.

GulliverL’industrie française me fait penser à Gulliver. Un géant maintenu a terre, entravé par une multitude de liens et de règles déraisonnables.
J’ai vu récemment à la télé François Bayrou comparant le code du travail français au code du travail suisse.

Code du travail Suisse : environ une centaine de pages.
Code du travail Français : 2691 pages.
Chômage en suisse : inférieur a 3%
Chômage en France : environ 11%

Comment voulez-vous abaisser le cout du travail (et réduire le chômage) quand les industriels français sont astreints a des règles absurdes (non valables dans d’autres pays)?

L’insécurité ?
Evidemment, les prisons étant pleines on n’arrête plus personne.
Solution ? Construire de nouvelles prisons avec les profits d’une économie nouvellement dynamique et enfermer immédiatement tous les voyous (quels qu’ils soient) qui commettent la moindre infraction.
Le chômage maitrisé et les voyous sous les verrous, la sécurité reviendra.



PS: To look at pictures of recent events, 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.