Gentlemen, a topic of the utmost importance and one sometimes difficult to deal with: the making of balanced teams for the game so that all the players are satisfied. It’s very difficult, moreover, it’s difficult to do. The game mustn’t be broken by latecomers who aren’t of equal ability.
If players believe they’ve a right to come in on a game they find going on, with most players it’s a courtesy to let them join the game. But there are days when most of the time is taken up with making up and remaking the teams which is very annoying for the group. If there are players who, when the teams are chosen, refuse to play, they lose the right to join the game. If there aren’t enough players for another game they’re out of luck.
If there are players who can’t agree to play, there’s no problem taking in someone else who is present. That’s not to say that the one who had refused to play can present himself as a replacement to make up the game. In all clubs they accept games of ten or eight players. That’s acceptable during the good weather of Summer, with regard to the heat. But in Winter when it’s cool, games are made of six or eight players, and four is the number accepted by a great number of players. In the pursuit of amusement one mustn’t freeze. Players who play four or six to a game shall each give nineteen centimes to the boule-keeper. I believe those gentlemen will find it a small price for their pleasure.
For those boule enthusiasts who wish to join the club, under the rules of the club, they may not be brought in except by the majority of the members. In cases of expedience we must bear in mind that we play in public and are there by the public’s assent, and are responsible for one another. On closer examination, we have a limited playground, which can hold only two games. We number perhaps forty and could scarcely be more.
Is there not room for everyone? Enthusiasts who ask to join the club must be presented by three members who well know the individual whom they put forward. The player shall be accepted by vote of the general meeting.
The last obligation of friendship is that of taking one’s friends to their last resting place. I believe that all friends should gather for this most moral of life’s duties, to place one’s friend in the grave. After the customary ceremony, two members of the club who know all the players, shall be stationed at the cemetery gate with a list of all the members’ names to note their attendance in the procession. Absentees shall be fined one franc each to go in the club treasury. You may say “I was away on a trip” another “I was in the country”, another was ill, another that he missed the notice, yet another that he’d moved. One franc, and you’re excused, it’s only he who has died that doesn’t pay. Those friends who are to rest under the ramparts cannot ask this of us themselves. Old players may enjoy the benefits of the society by keeping the rules of friendship. Every year there is a banquet, the treasury shall do the honours for the assembled friends. The treasury must never accumulate more than ninety francs in reserve, for things useful to the club.
The boule-keepers who participate in funeral processions shall receive two francs each for the day. The two francs will come from the treasury, if they don’t come they have no claim. Boule-keepers who are a bit careless concerning boules lost or stolen shall be punished by one day’s work, or one franc for a lost boule. This franc shall be placed in the club treasury. As long as the boule remains lost it’s up to the keeper to keep looking for it.
The club may name three members to ensure that the rules of the club are well kept and who may judge the facts for themselves. However, to expel a member shall require a general meeting.
Transcription: Jac Verheul, 1999
Translation Frank Pipal, 2000
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