Volume 2, Issue 1, The 53rd Edition
By Angel Zobel-Rodriguez
Put a fork in me, I'm done. Another bowling season is in the books. History. And like every year before it, I race through the season, waiting for the light at the end of the tunnel, but when that last week arrives, I border on manic. I don't know if it's human nature, or just me, but I've never been very good at the goodbyes at the end of the season. When the league resumes next fall, no doubt we will have lost a few familiar faces, and hopefully added a few new ones to the mix. I always want to hold on to the way things are right now.
My league sweeper was my last week, since I'll miss the travel circuit banquet for my next bowling road trip with friends to Indy for WIBC Nationals. We're making a detour to the Hoinke before we bowl WIBC. We have no delusions of winning, we're going just to say we've "been there, done that." I wonder if they have a T-shirt...
My travel league doesn't bowl summer, so I'm on my own. Luckily we've nearly convinced our year-long sub to take the spot if our teammate decides she can't come back next year. It can be a sober reminder to appreciate my health when I bowl with people who are much older than I am. When an injury sidelines a league member, the league seems to hold their collective breath until that bowler comes back. There's that unspoken notion that one day, there will be an injury and someone might not be able to come back. When we finally got our team healthy, we made a run toward the top, but settled back happily to the middle of the pack. Trust me, it's not a competitive league, and the difference between first and fourth was a mere $40 a person. I finished with high average, which was the only real goal I had for myself, anyway.
This summer, I'm actually doubling my league bowling from one league to two. It's going to be old home week for me, because I'm bowling with friends from when I first started bowling. The center we started at is just a memory, and the whole group of us haven't bowled together in more than 10 years. But aside from a few more grey hairs (or, in some cases, less hair), we should be the same group. Maybe instead of being the Wild Ones, we'll name ourselves, Wild Once.
The only one missing from the "good ol' days" will be my husband. As his achilles tendon slowly heals, he's been given the go-ahead to start putting pressure on it again. Of course, there's a fine line between walking around on it and using a five-step approach and power slide to hurl a sixteen-pound orb down a lane. So most of his presence will be felt from behind the lanes, hurling one liners at us while we bowl.
My son, despite having a season's pass to a local amusement park, and a swimming pool in the backyard has agreed to bowl league again this summer. Lest anyone thinks that that first place trophy went to his head, he's opting to bowl a glow bowling/rock and bowl league. His only request is that they don't play that Titanic theme music. Actually, I can appreciate that. I don't want to equate my bowling with a sinking ship either. And at eight, you shouldn't have to listen to mushy music when you bowl. It pretty much gives me the summer off, since there's not too much coaching you can do when the Beastie Boys are blaring over the speakers. He'll also be hitting two Pro Ams, a regional women's tournament and the PBA stop when they come to Southern California in late June, so he'll get his chance at hero worship while I work the camera in the role of Proud Mom.
So for people who think bowlers should take the summer off, maybe. Maybe take a mental break, and just try something new. Or if you're lucky, you can go back and rediscover something old (although I prefer the term retro), and recapture a bit of the past.