The Demise of Bowling

Bowling is a popular pastime for Americans of ...
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Teambuilding yesterday with the crew from the day job.

Bowling.

Good old fashioned bowling.

If you haven’t been bowling in a while, dust off your shoes, pull out your ball and get ready for a surprise.

House Balls

They are now color coded – pink ones are 10 pounds, blue ones, 12 pounds and so on. Is this to prevent people from getting their balls mixed up?

Forget Form

Did you learn how to bowl with the slide (like the guy in the picture)? Too bad. You pay $3.95 for shoes that stick to the floor. Apparently the shoes are only for show.

Automatic Scoring

I remember when these machines came out. They seemed cool.

Twenty years later I wonder what percentage of the bowlers know how bowling is scored (hint: you don’t count how many total pins get knocked down).

Food?

Turkey brie sandwich on ciabatta with raspberry sauce? My Grams would roll in her grave!

And they let you eat in the lane area. They even serve it to you in the lane area!

Media Infusion

The beloved rumble of the ball, the falling of pins and the pinsetters scooping the pins away are drowned out by annoyingly loud pop music. To distract you further from your strike (that you don’t care about because you don’t know how it scores), there are TVs at the end of the lanes!

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Ghost Pins

Occasionally there will be a neon pin that shows up in the stand. Only then you notice the black light pointed at the pins. I can’t figure out if there is meaning to this.

Lights? What lights?

They spent so much money on fancying the place up that they can’t afford to turn on the overhead lights.

Beer

The one saving grace. Beer’s still around. You may be hard pressed to get a pitcher, but you can still get a nice glass (not plastic anymore) of crap light beer.

What did I miss? Please share in the comments.

4 Responses to The Demise of Bowling
  1. katie
    August 20, 2010 | 6:00 am

    Where did you go bowling? If you are still in Houston try Palace Lanes in Bellaire. Still old school. The place you speak of aounds like that high class place downtown, yuck!

    • Idearella
      August 20, 2010 | 8:22 pm

      You pegged it, Katie. It was that downtown place. I’ll definitely check out Palace. Thanks!

  2. Susannah
    August 21, 2010 | 10:09 pm

    When I bartended in Clear Lake we used to go to AMF’s Rock’n'Bowl – sort of an after hours kind of thing (it was still normal during the day). From what I remember it was industry only which meant you had to be a server/bartender or the like. I always thought it was a blast because they would play old school music like Young MC and Freaks of the Industry, dim the lights, and add some strobe and a fogger.

    I believe if you got a stike when a neon pin was in the mix you won a free game…or a free beer…or something.

    I don’t know about the newer places its been years since I’ve split…at least anywhere but on Wii. Beer and food in the lane!?! Perhaps that’s why you can’t slide.

    • Idearella
      August 24, 2010 | 8:25 am

      If we knew that the neon pin meant free beer, we certainly would have paid attention!

      Thank you Susannah, if we are forced to go there again, I’ll make sure to ask.

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