La bataille de l’Elysée

La 24eme bataille de l’Elysée est terminée et François Hollande sera officiellement investi des pouvoirs présidentiels le 15 mai 2012.

Cérémonie solennelle mais sobre (comme le demande un président anti-bling bling), gardes républicains, poignées de main, passation des pouvoirs.

Viendra ensuite, si ce n’est déjà fait, le partage du gâteau. L’on n’en parlera pas en public (ce serait indécent de montrer une curée), mais les chefs de file de la 24eme croisade sont en droit d’espérer quelques morceaux de choix.

Depuis des temps immémoriaux, le partage du butin a toujours été une affaire délicate et tout le monde se souvient encore du Vase de Soissons.

Les centurions qui se sont battus de taille et d’estoc entendent bien récolter leur poids en sel. Les autres de même.

Et une attention particulière doit être donnée a ceux (Marine le Pen : 17,90% et Jean-Luc Melenchon: 11, 10%) qui ont rassemblé un grand nombre de voix. Car comme a dit Le Parrain: « Sois proche de tes amis, et plus proche encore de tes ennemis »

L’on pourra se permettre de négliger sans trop de risques Eva Joly (2,31%) et les deux “Trotskyists” Philippe Poutou (1,15%) et Nathalie Arnaud (0,56%)

Tous les chefs de file brigueront des postes de ministre et comme il n’y a seulement que 32 postes (autant que d’ânes dans un pré) a octroyer, il va falloir jouer serré.

Les fidèles qui seront adoubés parleront évidemment de leur devoir de servir la patrie, mais ne vous méprenez pas. L’ambition personnelle prime toujours le bien de la nation.
L’on ne devient pas ministre par amour de la patrie, mais plutôt pour paver un éventuel chemin vers l’Elysée.

Pour DSK le partage du butin aurait été plus facile. Si il avait été élu, il aurait probablement offert a ses mignons quelques parties fines et tout aurait été dit.

En attendant, toute la France est suspendue aux lèvres du Président qui est dans la position peu enviable d’avoir promis beaucoup et de ne pouvoir offrir que peu.



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Mais la vie sépare…

Mais la vie sépare ceux qui s’aiment
Tout doucement, sans faire de bruit…

But life separates those who love each other
Very slowly, very quietly …

In 1945 Jacques Prévert wrote a beautiful poem called “les feuilles mortes”  (the dead leaves) in which he laments the passage of time and the pain of lost love.

In life, this is a recurring theme. With the advent of globalization, people are more prone to leave friends and lovers behind to resettle in another state or even another country.

Those that were once close to you are suddenly living in the foggy beyond of the universe and you might not hear from them for a long time. Out of sight, out of heart, goes a French saying, and it is sadly true.

You tend to dismiss people you don’t see on a regular basis.

But should old friends be disposable items? I think not.

New friends are good, but old friends, like old sweaters, are more comfortable to wear. You know their qualities and their flaws, and you are less likely to be offended by their antics, for it is often the memory of youthful stunts that binds you together. A little bit like cellmates or army buddies.

But at the core of any friendship, there has got to be a mutual desire to keep memories and old bonds alive. And this requires work, and very often a “locomotive”, a dedicated individual who can put into motion and propel forward a group or a project.

One needs to remember that most friendships are made during our formative years. The older you get and the less likely you are to find kindred spirits. This is why you should nurture comradeships like old vine stocks.

Properly cared for, they will keep producing enjoyable clarets that will delight you and keep you warm in your advancing age.




August 12 tournament

Yesterday, La Pétanque Marinière hosted the FPUSA NW Regional tournament and I am happy to report that everything went swimmingly well.

The weather (nobody ever does anything about it) was picture perfect and absolutely ideal for a pétanque contest.

People who came early couldn’t help but notice the clearly marked and perfectly groomed field. You can thank Charlie Davantes, Christine Cragg, Claudie Chourré and David Riffo for that. I tip my hat to you, you beautiful people.

54 contestants (18 triplettes), elected to participate in this event, and they are as follows:
Team 1: Steve Jones/Jean-Michel Poulnot/Simone Furlan

Team 2: Gilles Karpowicz/Jurgen Weisse/Denyse Haney
Team 3: Bee Moua/Carolina Jones/Caryl Putman
Team 4: David Riffo/Bleys Rose/Gustave Foucher
Team 5: Paul Moua/Pierre Bremont/Christine Cragg
Team 6: Jean-Claude Bunand/Teri Sirico/Liv Kraf
Team 7: Dan Feaster/Holly Sammons/Robert Belfore
Team 8: Alain Gusella/Antonia Paulsen/Nan Walker
Team 9: Etienne Rijkheer/Alain Efron/Phyllis Mosher
Team 10: Yor Lee/Larry Cragg/Christine Jones
Team 11: John Morris/Greg Putman/Carin Paulsen
Team 12: Mike Cooper/Clausie Chourre/Frank Haney
Team 13: Kao Lee/Bernard Passmar/Mary Albright
Team 14: Phominok Lee/Colette Van Der Meulen/Peggy Silversides
Team 15: Kevin Evoy/Phim Nielsen/Tamara Efron
Team 16: Steven Paulsen/Patick Vaslet/Helen McGill
Team 17: Chang Xiong/David Katz/Linda Evans
Team 18: Ed Porto/Barbara Howard/Donna Yates

It is to be noted that, for sake of efficiency and timeliness, teams were configured the day before the tournament and this allowed the organizers to start the games at 10:00 a.m.

Croissants (albeit a little late) and coffee were offered to the contestants to help them sustain the arduous journey ahead.

Three 13 points “timed” games were played before lunch.

Timing games is a good idea, but I resent players who take an inordinate amount of time before finally parting with their boules.

Pacing the field back and forth might look good wise, but to me it is a real nuisance.

This often means that a game will be cut short before it reaches its natural 13 points completion. This procrastination can affect the final outcome of a game, for a leading team is not always assured of victory.

In my (always partial) opinion, in a timed game, contestants should be allowed to inspect the field only once. On their second shot they should have 30 seconds to play or desist. Period!

Before I forget, let’s give a hand to Verena, Bart and David for running a tight tournament, and to Antoine Lofaro (umpire) whose decisions are godlike.

After lunch, contestants (according to their morning scores) started to play either in the Concours or either in the Consolante and all the games were eliminatory.

At 7:00 p.m. it was all over. Apéritifs were served and medals awarded.

The final results are as follows:

1st place: Kevin Evoy/Phim Nielsen/Tamara Efron: $73.00 each
2nd place: Paul Moua/Pierre Bremont/Christine Cragg: $41.00 ea
3rd place: Steve Jones/Jean-Michel Poulnot/Simone Furlan: $31:00 ea

1st place: Steven Paulsen/Patick Vaslet/Helen McGill: $31:00 ea
2nd place: Yor Lee/Larry Cragg/Christine Jones: $20.00 ea
3rd place: Alain Gusella/Antonia Paulsen/Nan Walker: $13.00 ea

Before I put my pen to rest, I would like to beg for sympathy.

Because of my mate’s (annoying) prowess on the field, I am now in the unenviable position of playing second fiddle to somebody I taught how to drink wine, eat snails, and play Pétanque.

This is humiliating and has got to cease! I need your support to help me find ways to regain my previously unchallenged macho man status.

All suggestions are welcome and I will publish the 10 best ideas.

Thank you for your understanding and cooperation.



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