I absolutely cannot bowl… at all! I have never stopped trying, though. In high school I would go bowling with my friends. I did not get to do this for long as the owner asked me to not bowl there any longer. I am sure others bowl how I do, but I never improved. Sometimes I would release the ball as it was heading backward and it would go sailing behind me. I had a knack for releasing the ball at the wrong time and it would rise high into the air and hit the lanes with a terrible crash. I could never keep my wrist straight. I have the same problem throwing a frisbee. Being a baby boomer, frisbees were a big thing. I could only watch. Try as I might, it always went to the left or right and never straight. When you curve like this while throwing a bowling ball, your ball will jump two to three lanes over. This is the reason the owner had the unpleasant task of asking me to please not bowl any longer. I complied and just would watch my friends bowl. Much later in life, I mentioned that to the owner who was always a very, very sweet man. He questioned me that he did it and said he felt absolutely terrible and he was so sorry. I laughed and laughed and told him not to feel terrible at all, he really had no choice. It is fortunate that I never injured anyone with my wild tosses. He thought that felt so mean of him to do. He was so sweet!
I remember that you would write your scores yourself on a sheet of paper, but I feel like I have a memory of that paper being able to be projected on to the screen at the top. I am not certain about this, but I feel like you could see the scores up there and it was not yet all electronic. Anyone can correct me below or tell me your memories, I would appreciate knowing. I am not sure, but I feel like somehow you could see the scores and I feel like there was someone writing them on paper. I think it was the case as I never liked for anyone to see my scores!
When I was older, I would go bowling with my sister, her husband and her two sons. The sons were so young and so much better than me. My sister could never understand why I could not do something simple like bowling. She would coach me on how to hold my wrist straight. She would tell me different ways to try, complete with walking up to the lane and rolling it. One time when we were bowling, it was like a light bulb went off for her. I am left handed but do most sports with my right hand. I am not too great at any sport, however. She told me to bowl with my left hand, and that she was sure that was my problem. I assured her that this was not the case but she persisted in having me try it. I did and I swung back my arm with the ball in tow and brought the ball forward straight into the side of my knee. I am not sure I have felt pain like that in my knee ever. It turns out there was no damage, but it sure did hurt. At least, everyone had a good laugh over that one! One time my ball got stuck back with the pins and the owner’s son had to get back there and remove the ball. My sister whispered to him to stay back there and the next time I bowled, for him to be sure and knock them down. Well, I bowled and missed them all on the first try, the second try I missed them all as well. Out comes this hand, very obvious, and he knocks them all down. What a great laugh we had! Again, no pictures captured that!
I then went bowling with my husband (who happens to still have his trophy from back in the day) and with my children. I was no better, but I wonder why I thought I would just improve with age and no practice? I was happy when we found they had bumper guards and I could bowl a little better. I found a spot that I could hit that bumper and knock several down. I am surprised I could hit that same spot, but I should not have been because after all, it was the gutter. That is where most of my balls went! My children, however, did not “need” those and really did not want to bowl in those lanes so my “great” bowling days were over. I think the lowest I have bowled a game was an 11 and the highest was a 110. I am not sure how I got this high score, it must have been the bumpers or people taking a turn for me. I am certain that others have these same types of stories to tell about bowlers they know. I cannot be the only one. These tidbits of my bowling experience, or rather lack of, is just a prelude to the story below.
The story about bowling that tops them all, is one about my Aunt. She was a great bowler and was on bowling leagues for years. They wore those cute league shirts that came in different colors. Each league had their own color with the team name on the back and their name on the front of them. I remember that I was always impressed with the fact that she even owned her own ball! We went to some of her games when I was a child and I can remember the atmosphere. It was so lively with all of the different leagues bowling at once. You could hear the balls hitting the floor and rolling down the lanes. I loved that noise as well as the pins slapping to the ground. The bowlers were all smiling, having such fun and excited to be there. They had a soda fountain and grill. The hamburgers smelled so good and the sodas were great. There were a few pool tables and pinball machines. This was just a fun experience and good memory for me.
My cousin, Scottie, however has a great story to tell and he shared it with me. He and his little brother, Timmy, were taken to the bowling alley with her, their grandmother. She was bowling and as she was approaching the lane, she sneezed. Guess what happened??? She rolled the ball at the same as her sneeze and she spit her teeth, the top plate, out right down the lane!!! I bet that tops all of the stories! Probably not a lot of people know anyone who has done that! Again, oh for a cell phone with a video camera!!! Scottie said she ran and grabbed her teeth quickly and about busted her behind doing it! He said she turned five shades of red and ordered him and Timmy to get out of there quickly! I am told that she was so mad all of the way home and was cussing fixodent!
People that knew my aunt, their grandmother, knew that she was a hummer. She hummed at different times, but actually quite a lot of times. We learned that she hummed at different things, happiness, her favorite songs, nerves, anger, excitement, etc. and in different manners for different emotions. Scottie said that on the way home, there was an awful lot of humming going on. Haha! I know just what hum that was as I have heard it before! Story has it that when she got home, she was on the phone for about three hours doing damage control. Even though he was eight or so at the time Scottie says he can see it clear as can be to this day and it is still just as funny! He said she was getting mad at them for laughing about it so much. When they got to her house he and Timmy went behind her garage and relived what they had just witnessed and laughed for hours!!! I wish I would have seen this, but being told the story was just as good. I can just picture it all! She was such a great, fun woman. My mother and her had so many wonderful adventures. There were three of the sisters. There will never be any like them again. They were such fun! I am sure there will be many, more stories of them and their antics.
Speaking of fixodent, if that were on film, what a great commercial it could have been for fixodent! Don’t let this happen to you, get fixodent today! I realize she used fixodent, but they could still use it, no one had to know that she did. Hahaha!!!!