In the Bayou Teche area, it's said that the players will bet on anything; even high school sports and which duck will first take off from the water. And players of Louisiana politics is not above playing by Chicago rules either! Even to the extent of bringing in outsiders to sweeten the deal. Now that's called Plaquemines Parish Rule: as many as you can import gets to vote!
However, this mania for gambling reached epic proportions when Badeaux's Bar and Recreation Center started offering a morning line on which young miss would win the title of Boudin Queen at the annual Boudin Festival. To be sure, this was a highly coveted title in Grand Teche, even exceeding Homecoming Queen at Grand Teche High School!
Now some of the same strategies that might be employed in beauty pageants, special hair tints, well-fitting dresses, bra inserts, heels, and other ways of enhancing the appeal of the various contestants. But since betting on the outcome and money changing hands was part of the process, some nefarious bettors tried stuffing the ballot box. Hence my comment about Plaquemines Parish rules.
The problem one years was that the competition for Boudin Queen was especially keen one year Tee Tina, Clotilde, Tee Suzette, Tee Marie, Marguerite, and others promised more viable choices and there was unusual interest in the process. Some of this was due to some long-term rivalries among the contestants; and some was due to a lot of Texas money being bet on the contestants.
Now the esteemed position of Boudin Queen was done ostensibly democratically: one person, one vote. But the ballot boxes were stuffed!
Or so the story went.
Part of it was also that Tee Tina's maman insisted that she wore her bra: "No, you are not to appear like that in front of the whole Parish including old Father Broussard!" And another part was that Tee Suzette kissed her way into getting some votes. These ploys split the local vote, so to speak.
Anyway, Barbara Jean, a fille recently moved in from Texas, won the title. The story came out about the voting irregularities and no one was especially fooled. No, Barbara Jean's campaign manager paid busloads of local bar patrons a beer apiece if they voted for Barbara Jean. Some greedy so-and-sos voted three or four times, getting a beer each time.
The crowd was unusually rowdy that evening in Grand Teche's Fair around the time the Boudin Queen's vote was announced! How much was due to beer bribes; and how much was utter surprise, one can only guess.
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