When I was a kid I used to do the candlepin bowling thing. It was very popular in Maine about two lifetimes ago. Candlepin balls are 4 1/2 inches in diameter and they have no holes, as nature intended. The pins are really skinny, hence the name candlepin.
Decades ago I was cajoled by a group of friends into bowling with the big balls. I wasn’t happy to be there. What did I know about 10-Pin bowling? I did the only thing, TOTALLY by accident, that would get me out of it for the rest of the night…and perhaps the rest of my life. This wasn’t planned, honestly, it wasn’t. The fact that no one died is a plus, but I’m not sorry it turned out the way it did.
There I was, being a hater, wearing those stupid shoes, wishing I could be playing with my little candlepin balls. Yes, I know that sounds bad, but it’s going to get worse. Instead of playing with the balls of my choice, I was cursing at the high probability that I was about to break fingernails. With a big sigh, I resigned myself to my fate.
I girded my loins (Google translate is going to love that one) and I threw my arm back to release the ball…only I didn’t wait for my arm to go forward. The ball went sailing behind me, right between two members of my group of friends. Apparently, launching a 10-pound projectile is frowned upon. Especially if it’s going in the wrong direction and it certainly was doing that!
As I said, this was not premeditated. I just want to make that clear. I bore no ill will toward my bowling companions, I DID bore ill will toward big-ball bowling. I’m sorry, there is no way to tell this story without sounding crass. It doesn’t help that I keep transposing letters and type “blowing” instead of bowling, but I digress…
I was never asked by that group to bowl again for fear that I might kill someone. That didn’t hurt my feelings one jot. I didn’t care about being embarrassed because that would have happened many times over if I’d actually played. This just got it over with quickly, and quite literally, with a big bang.
I did redeem myself during the drinking portion of the evening. I proved to be extremely proficient at that.