I’ve never been an avid bowler. But on the odd occasion when I’ve been coerced into bowling with friends, I always seem to have what some people might call “beginner’s luck.” (Other people might call it being an “idiot savant”) Whatever their explanation, once I stepped onto the bowling alley, I became a different person. A person with a mission, with a goal, with an unnatural desire to knock down a set of pins. And for what? Money? Fame? No. Just to waste some time on a Saturday night.
So without even trying, I’d start getting strikes or spares, quickly racking up points that would shoot me to the top of the leader board. The problem is, once I’d had a few rounds of “beginner’s luck,” I’d start getting cocky, stupidly believing that I’d somehow inherited a Golden Arm when it came to tossing a bowling ball. And inevitably, that’s when my winning streak began to falter. When I wasn’t paying attention to what I was doing, I’d perform like a Pro Bowler. But as soon as I put any thought into it, I become as awkward as Olive Oyl.
Nevertheless, bowling has always been somewhat amusing for me, as I always seemed to do well for at least the first four or five frames. After that, when I started throwing gutter balls like they were confetti, I toned down both my bravado and my swagger, often repeating to anyone who would listen “It’s just a game, you know. It’s just a game.” What a sad, sorry sack I was.
Anyway, I recently purchase a Wii (for some reason) even though I never play video games and find the whole gaming industry somewhat puzzling. (For more clarity on this topic, please refer an earlier posting of mine, “Why I Don’t Play Video Games.”) But I’d heard the Wii Fitness was a great way to work out, so I though I’d maybe integrate it into my regular routine of weight lifting and calisthenics. But the Wii system I purchased also had a free set of games inside that included skiing, boxing, archery, baseball, a bunch of other stuff…and bowling.
Naturally I wanted to try the bowling right away, to see if my video “beginner’s luck” would be anything like my bowling alley experiences. And sure enough, on my very first try, I got a strike. And that’s without even knowing how to work the Wii console properly. Still, my subsequent turns also rewarded me with similar results, and once again I started putting on the cocky attitude. Although at the time, the only ones to witness my pompous prancing were my two little kittens, Tipi and Tuck, who seemed confused by my constant strutting back and forth like an overzealous peacock. Eventually they both fell asleep, while I continued to not only bowl, but ski and go cart as well.
As a matter of fact, after an evening of playing with my Wii (no pun intended), I am completely over my aversion to video games. But it’s only because this kind of active play made me feel more a part of the experience, and therefore more worthy of my time. With games that you have to kill people or battle monsters to get to the next level, I never understood the point. But with these kinds of good old fashioned interactive sports and games, I am a new believer. Since purchasing the Wii, I’ve had a bowling party (in my basement) where I served Patty Melts, fries and milkshakes, and even wore my retro bowling shirt as host. It was a lot of fun, and much easier and less expensive than trotting down to the local bowling alley.
So in celebration of this new phenomenon, Basement Bowling, I offer you an older Cat Clips on the topic that has never yet appeared on this blog. So enjoy, and have a great weekend!