Don’t worry, ball yankers are just a part of bowling

imageAfter seven years weeks of attending our oldest son’s high school bowling tournaments, I’m passing along a few tips to parents who may find themselves in a similar situation. And by ‘”situation” I mean contemplating suffocating themselves with an empty bowling bag after listening to 24 lanes of crashing pins for five hours. Especially if, for personal reasons, you aren’t comfortable spending those hours drinking in front your child’s high school teammates.

First, invest in a tall folding chair. The taller the better. In fact, consider purchasing a portable lifeguard stand if possible. That’s because getting a prime seat to watch your child bowl depends on how willing you are to take the life of a complete stranger. Getting a good location is similar to the Oklahoma Land Rush. Once the doors open, parents stampede (some on actual horseback) to the most valuable territory: the mid-point between 1) the center of the bowling lanes, 2) the bar and 3) the restrooms.

Parents then frantically stake their claim by jamming giant folding chairs together until the result is something similar to how homes are wedged together in poor sections of Hong Kong. Should something unexpected cause a panic, such as an earthquake or 300-game, it’s doubtful anyone will survive a catastrophic folding-chair collapse. For this reason, I suggest avoiding the mayhem by investing in that portable lifeguard stand. Sure, it may draw some stares and grumbling. Especially as you arrive moments before the tournament and climb to your seat well above those who clamored for prime territory when the doors opened at 6:30 a.m. There may even be a few threats about speaking to the management. But as they’ll discover, the only rule about spectator chairs is that they be moveable.

So as they say in bowling: They can go wax their balls.  Continue reading

Full-contact bowling could get more men to yell at their TVs

Full-contact bowling could add a whole new meaning to the agony of defeat.

Full-contact bowling could add a whole new meaning to the agony of defeat.

Like millions of other red-blooded, unathletic men across America, I will spend a good portion of New Year’s Day sitting on the couch, eating handfuls of assorted snack foods, and whining every time a player from my team makes even the teeniest mistake.

It doesn’t matter that these men are performing feats of athletic skill I can only achieve in my dreams (after which I usually wake up with a pulled groin muscle.) And it doesn’t matter that each of these men possesses more muscle mass than my entire body weight plus a mid-sized SUV.

The reason these things don’t matter to us men is because we knew THOSE men can’t actually hear us. If they could, then football parties as we know them would cease to exist: Continue reading