I've heard references to "conkers" and "playing conkers" but never known what they were. It turns out, they're chestnuts. And one plays them by banging them together. And according to this video, one can cheat at it. But no one seems to know how.
I can't say that playing conkers is stupid. I take such a dim view of sports that no one sport seems any worse than any other. That being said, this game reminds me very much of Calvin Ball, from the Calvin & Hobbes comic strip. It's a sport where everyone seems to be shouting and counter-shouting about arbitrary rules.
This video shows various ways that one can cheat at conkers by hardening one's conker. (I don't know why that's cheating. It seems like the whole point of the game, to me.) What intrigues me, after looking around, is that everyone has a different method for making the perfect conker, but those methods contradict each other. Some say you should cook the conkers at 250 degrees, and others say 120. Some say leave the conker in vinegar, while others believe that softens the meat. One blog even recommends Oil of Olay to make the conker malleable and ready to absorb impacts.
Surely someone has to have a good conker recipe. Are all of these just shots in the dark? Conkerers! Let me know your conker secrets, and why they work.
[Via The Best Way to Strengthen a Conker, How Strong is a Conker.]