I have mixed feelings concerning what I’m about to say. And I think what I’m about to say my have solved some of my “finding friends in your 20’s sucks ass once you’re out of school” problems.
I bought a bowling ball.
Me. A bowling ball! I’m really excited. It’s in Pennsylvania right now getting drilled. To fit my fingers. I guess I’m so excited about this because I’ve never had a personalized piece of sporting equipment. I played softball and tennis, but I just bought off-the-rack. Besides the chintzy t-shirts given to us by the recreational leagues, nothing ever had my name on it–and it wasn’t personalized for me.
The bowling ball is both.
Let’s go back to the beginning of my career with bowling.
We all did the bowling thing in Junior High and High school–the GLOW BOWLING THING. You know…farm kids hanging out in neon lights laughing at the fact that our teeth were blue, embarrassed by the fact that we had so much lint on our clothes. Couples thought it might be more fun to make out in black light.
The rest of us tried to perfect our kick, to get the attention of that guy or gal that we were interested in, and to happen to fall into their lap on the fiberglass chairs by the end of the night.
And then we’d stand outside in the parking lot, rejoicing in the night, all hopped up on Mountain Dew, laughing at the snow, planning to do it again.
The score wasn’t important then. We still thought it was fun to get a strike, but in the end, we got to laugh in the black light for a few hours, and that was enough.
And then we got to college, and the competition became the more important thing…but in a different way. It became about who could sneak the most beers off the tables from the drunk regular bowlers. It became about the “sex pin,” although most of us never held up on our word. (((For those of you wondering, the “sex pin” is the bowling pin in the very middle of the triangle. The opportunity to use the “sex pin” happens when you knock down all the pins but leave the middle one standing. If you pick up that pin on a spare, you’re supposedly going to get laid that night.)))
I remember bowling with my cousin Heidi when I visited Ashland University before I attended. She sneaked me a couple beers, taught me about the sex pin, and let me hang out with her now-husband’s little brother. I felt freaking cool. Tim McGraw’s “Red Rag Top” was the big song that year, and they played it so loud over the speakers that something about it made me anxious to get to AU for my own college career.
And then there was bowling here and there in grad school. Mostly I just played along, not actually wanting to be there. And then the night of Christmas 2009, all of my cousins, Heidi excluded, went out to Plaza Lanes off of Route 20 in Fremont, and we bowled. BOY did we bowl. I got my high score that night. 176.
You may not know this about Mike (boyfriend Mike), but he’s an avid bowler. I bought him a bowling shirt for his birthday with “Big Ern” embroidered on the shoulder–as it is his bowling name. He has the shoes, the ball, the bag, the nifty little thing that cleans oil of the bowling ball. He’s hardcore.
And this weekend, after he made me tacos, bought me Skinny Girl margarita mix (it’s so good!), and let me watch Ghost Hunters, we took off on Saturday to do some shopping. We ended up at Seneca Lanes and bowled a couple of games. I realized how much I love it–and that we could do it together, and often. But I also realized how much I freaking hate finding a ball to fit my hands.
So we went and bought one. It looks like a peacock! I’ll post pics when it’s done being drilled.
BUT the solution to THIS PROBLEM: I can go bowling in Brunswick! I can make bowling friends! And if…WHEN, Mike gets here, we could join a league! I’m super psyched about this.
Bowling. The joy of it all. 😉