GETTING A TURKEY

“Inhale, exhale

Think…

Simplify and breathe…hit the lanes”

The first time I discovered bowling was ages ago in some country club in the summer capital of the Philippines, Baguio. It was also the first time I heard of duckpin bowling, which I thought, at that time, was meant for diminutive people like me. I had fun playing duckpin bowling. It would be quite some time before I went into a bowling alley again. But this time it wasn’t duckpin bowling anymore – it was tenpin bowling where, naturally, the ball was heavier, the shiny wooden (or synthetic) lanes wider and seemingly slippery, and the chances of my ball going into the gutter were much higher. Still, I persevered. I’d pick up my 8-lb ball, stick in the three fingers and imagine myself as one of the top bowlers in the world. Thankfully, I had the skill – or foresight – not to lob the ball while taking my turn at the lane although getting a strike or turkey wasn’t always a given.

Concentrate and get that strike or turkey

Without consulting any rule book or pro bowler, lobbing the ball is obviously a no-no. The wooden floor will surely crack in time from the repeated lobbing of the 8- 15 lb balls by the bowlers. Aside from destroying the lane, which I’m guessing will cost a lot of money to repair, it’s really distracting. Picture yourself – eyes on the lane, mind free of disturbing thoughts, you take the first two steps and finally the “curtsey” step and ka-blam! The bowler on your left lobs the ball as she takes her turn causing you to jerk your elbow and your aim to go askew. Instead of scoring even a point, your bowl trundles nicely along the gutter – no thanks to Ms. Lobber.

I doubt if I’ll ever reach the pro level like some of the colleagues I used to play with. There was one who had his own bowling ball, bag and a wrist supporter that somehow reminded me of the Terminator’s dismembered forearm. He was very good – his shots would spin and ka-pow! He’d always get a strike and a turkey every now and then. Sadly, he didn’t have the patience to play with the non-amateurs, shaking his head in disappointment when his team mate did badly.

Pro or not, I like to bowl. It is a wonderful stress-relieving activity. Your mind focuses on perfecting your technique, in getting that elbow neatly tucked to your side not to swing out but to swing straight when you release the bowl to let it slide strong and smooth on the lane. I completely forget about whatever has had a hold on my mind – person, place or thing. At times, when I’m really miffed, I imagine the pins lined up as the people who shouldn’t be breathing my air as I let my ball rip down the lane. But my thoughts usually run two ways at where I play which is at PS Bowling Lounge: not having my ball slide to the gutter during the game and eating at Marché and having a cup of ice cream from Cold Stone after the match.

Pretty cool and colourful bowling shoes

PS Bowling Lounge is a bit expensive compared to the lanes at Kelapa Gading but it all boils down to the bowling shoes. The smallest pair of bowling shoes-for-rent at Kelapa Gading is still way too big for me that I feel they’d fly off any minute when I bowl aside from looking too decrepit for my taste. The ones at PS Bowling Lounge are very colourful and fit perfectly.

Cool bowling shoes – checked. Socks – checked. Sweater- checked. Shall we go get a turkey then?

PS Bowling Lounge

CP516, 5F

Plaza Senayan

Hours: 11:00 – 24:00

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