Games of *cough* Interest

Parties d’intéret is the euphemism for games involving betting. Betting is of course banned under FFPJP rules but in the quieter corners of some towns and villages ‘games of interest’ can be found.

A lot are just a few euros among mates but there are cut throat (sometimes literally) games where big stakes change hands, including side betting.

Naturally where there is money there is skulduggery. A lot of it involves shooting contests, runs of hits, runs of carreaux etc. Naturally it pays to ensure that your boules are as predictably controllable as possible. Illegal alteration of boules is seriously interdit of course but some bizarre ploys are common.

Boules farcis. “Stuffed boules” aimed at altering rebound and run action. Some of the ploys involve:

‘Recuite’ or Softening.  Heat the boule to cherry red and leave it to air cool. What we old metal bashers call ‘normalising’.  This removes the temper and reduces rebound. However they don’t last long.

‘Stuffing’. Drilling a small hole and filling the hollow with mercury or cotton soaked in mercury giving effectively a liquid core which will keep spinning after the boule has struck to impart a braking or retro effect . Other bizarre ploys involve pushing a lot of small coil springs, ball bearings or even elastic bands into the core;I have heard of dry sand being used. The latest novel scam is said to be filling the core with pressurised gas . I have no idea how this would work but I would stand well clear!

​​​Of course, no member of LPC would ever be caught doing any of the above….


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