Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Zombie Apocalypse and We're Still Playing Petanque

While the rest of the world succumbs to the zombie apocalypse, we'll be playing petanque safely inside

Careful footing at the indoor courts - foot-faults have serious penalties

Zombes watch as we play petanque

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Detroit Bouleodrome Heating Up

Alpha has been pointing in some very tricky boules

 The surface for the indoor petanque court has really presented some nice twists for the players.  We have to adapt our shooting (allowing for higer bounces) and our pointing throws: the center edging on the mats makes for some strategic cochonnet placement; but all of these factors make the game quite a challenge.  There's plenty of surface remarks to give advantage to those players "in the know" - but everyone has been open to offering advice on how the boule will travel.

Eight for petanque: (from left) Abu, Paul, Bob, Alpha, Maury, Tim, Fred, Jeff (out of camera)

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Tim and Alpha take the Win

Abu and I were fighting back, and gaining points, but we simply were not able to keep Tim/Alpha from getting that one last crucial 13th point for the win. 

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Fred is Unstoppable on the Indoor Courts

Smaller group today but the playing was tight and challenging
Fred took on Alpha and Jeff in the lunchtime indoor petanque.  It was a challenging match as Fred has been on a winning streak these past few games.  Edging ahead, Fred's lead was being whittled away point by point as Alpha and I seized any opportunity given to us.  We discovered a "lean" on one of the edges of the court which, if remembered, could present an advantage in later games.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Fred "Jimmy-Legs" K. Beats Pat Again

Fred shows off his special dancing technique of petanque playing

Pat and his partner lose again to Fred "Jimmy-Legs" K.
  Pat vows that he will not lose again to Team-Fred, even if he has stay 24 hours a day to practice.  Today's game was a foregone conclusion after Team-Fred logged 5 points in a single round when Team-Pat failed to keep any boules on the piste.  It was simply a matter of dropping the boules at our feet for the extra points!

Monday, November 12, 2012

Pat Offered Up Sensitive Encouragement in Today's Petanque Game

Sometimes we get visits from important intergalactic dignitaries likes Jabba the Hutt
 Appropriate leadership guidance for fellow team members is at the top of Pat's list as petanque team captain.  When a boule is thrown improperly, or a relatively easy point is missed, you can always count on Pat to offer up select words of encouragement.  Today, he gave Tim an emotional boost by calling him a "Pigeon-toed little bitch" after successively badly pointed boules.   Of course, Pat is the first one to admit when he's thrown a boule badly, yelling out "That was another Sh*tball - two sh*tballs thrown!"   All in an afternoon's amusement!  See you soon. 

Friday, November 09, 2012

Second Week of Indoor Petanque

The second week of Indoor Petanque has brought in some careful game play as the surface (terrain) has been plotted out and carefully mapped for trouble spots and lanes of opportunity.  Knowing the way the surface works in the bouledrome really offers up an advantage to a careful team.  The mats (4) are laid such that where they meet (the seams) and the under-surface (bare floor with some rocks) will give the careful player a bit of advantage in pointing and shooting.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Indoor Bouleodrome in Detroit, Michigan Fully Operational

 The indoor courts can provide three pistes of petanque playing, and includes amenities like bathrooms, heat, luncheonette nearby, and plenty of window views of people shivering on the street. 

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Pat and Fred Took the Win Today at Cadillac Square

a few distractions at Cadillac Square today, but nothing to keep us concentrating on our game.  That is, until we realized our pointing was off, then it was downhill from there.

Tim plays well when he's eating his lunch

Monday, October 22, 2012

Welcome Back Summer!

Tim's shot at the end of today's game (bringing the Pat/Tim combination 2 wins today) was just the icing on their cake as he was pointing great throughout.  We (Jeff/Fred/Alpha) just couldn't get a foothold on our opposition - we chalk it up to Tim's 4-ft sub-sandwich and bag of chips.

Friday, October 12, 2012

Hitesh and Nick Join the Campus Petanque Playing

 Hitesh stopped by at Campus Martius and that's when my team's pointing really took off.  He is a great pointer and though he hasn't been playing for a couple of years (not regularly that is) every point was close and in front.  This was devastating for the opposition which try as they might, just couldn't out point (nor shoot away) all of our close boules. 

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Five Points Lost on a Shot Cochonnet

Here is today's error made by Team Captain Jeff W.
 We have been playing petanque across the street in Campus Martius Park.  The piste is quite tricky as it has water features which moisten and soften the ground in spots, wile dramatic slopes in other areas.  You really have to know the ground in order to lay in a boule.  Sometimes, you'd need to point 6 feet to the left or right just to allow for the slope of the ground.  Of course, this is an opportunity for getting around obstacles, but only if you can read the terrain.  It reminds me of the importance of playng on different surfaces because when one travels to other clubs you're not always used to the type of ground encountered.  While the USA team was away in Marseille, I texted Ziggy and asked him what techniques they'd use and avoid.  He told me that the ground is tricky, and that the plombe (high arc) doesn't work on that sort of gsurface, but Tir au Fer does.  (see photo below form Juan)

Check out the large rocks mixed in with the pea gravel

Thursday, October 04, 2012

World Petanque Championships Start up in Marseilles

While we've been grooming our Detroit players for greatness, other players have ascended to the World Championships for Triplettes and Shooting in Marseilles, France.  48 countries (teams) compete in Shooting and Triplettes contests. Today begins the big world event for Juan Garcia, Ziggy Kessouagni, Pascal Corchia, and Peter Mathis.  They are guided by their coach: Didier Bloch and represented with a delegation head: Philippe Boets (of Petanque America).  Today (Oct 4th) is the shooting competition.  Pascal is listed for that competition and it involves various points awarded for hitting different boule/cochonnet set-ups.  
advance to about the 5 minute mark

Nick, back from Spain, has to re-learn the foot fault rules - else, stand on his toes
Sam, ever nimble, executes his high arc plombes

His Excellency, Fred, likes to drop his boules with a noisy clatter just as an opponent is pointing
Today's game was with a surprising result as we (Jeff/Nick/Abu/Sam) were pointing really great as compared with Fred/Pat/Tim/Maury - we thought we'd really cream our opponents.  But after the fourth round of excellent pointing - we really had nothing to show for it point-wise.  We didn't capitalize on our opponent's using up all of their boules and leaving openings for us to add to our tally.  By the fifth round, they were warmed up to the terrain and out pointing and out shooting us.  Really, it was our own fault for not grabbing those early points fast enough.

Wednesday, October 03, 2012

Don't Count Your Chickens Before They're Hatched

"Don't Count Your Chickens Before They're Hatched"
It is a good lesson to remember because Team-Tim (Tim/Jeff/Alpha/Rafael) were up 11 points to 2 before Team-Abu (Abu/Sam/Fred) began their ascent, 1 point per round, catching up and then winning 13/11 in a comeback upset.  Tim was already reporting the point disparity (at 11/2) to Pat, and he was planning to take his win and leave...  but the pointing from Team-Abu was fierce and we just couldn't compete.

Tuesday, October 02, 2012

Team Abu with Double Wins

It must be on account of Tim's Pretzel-bun sandwich that we took both games this afternoon at Detroit's Cadillac Square Park.  Dumbfounded, Team Pat shambled off the pistes.   While taking an early lead, Team-Pat's pointing fell apart like a weather-beathen shack in a hurricane after Abu laid in some nice starting boules, and they simply couldn't regain the point until their 6th boule.  By then we had a significant boule advantage and they just couldn't compete.

Friday, September 28, 2012

Came Back after a 9 to Zero Climb to Win

Things looked dire at the start of today's game, with four points lost in the first round, and another four in the second.  Down eight to zip, our opponent's gained another point to make it 9 to zero.  At this point, Maury (on the team with Zero points mind you) offered terms for his opponent's surrender - which were promptly ... rejected.  So be it, as the next few rounds whittled down that lead until we overtook and beat them 13 to 9.  A very satisfying victory.  The strategy laid out by Sam really aided in our come back as he carefully noted when to shoot, and most important, what path to take in pointing, which was expertly carried out by Maury for the win.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Alpha Traded in the Nick of Time for the 13/12 Win

After Fred received a "business-related" phone call (which we suspect is merely a message that the 2 for 1 donuts are being given out a the local Tim Hortons) and left, we picked up Alpha, which really helped in our pointing and for the win.  

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Lucky Cap - Not So Lucky - Double 1/13 Losses

I'm not going to attribute by twin 1/13 losses this afternoon to my stylish cap - it was just bad pointing from me and my team mates.  The lucky thing was that it wasn't a complete rout (13/0) - but not THAT lucky.  See you Thursday!

Monday, September 24, 2012

Pat and Alpha on a Winning Streak

These boulse look well used.  That is a magnet stuck on to his boule to retrieve it.

In the center of Paris is a park, Jardin Luxembourg, where Petanque is played daily.  The players keep their boules in their own numbered boxes, and that, in a kiosk that is locked/unlocked each day

Friday, September 21, 2012

Chilly Petanque Weather - Brings Out the Hardy Players

Definitely a chill in the air, with folks donning jackets and pullovers for petanque playing while we look for sunnier spots to play.  The courts at Cadillac Square offer some warmer pistes towards the east side of the park, and that's also thicker gravel - keep that in mind!