Category Archives: Bowling

The 69th PBA US Open: Squirmy Kids In The Audience

In a dramatic finish to the championship match yesterday, the legendary PDW (Pete Weber) captured his 5th US Open title in a one-pin victory over Mike “The King of Swing” Fagan, with a clutch strike on the final ball to propel him to the 215-214 victory. For those who missed it, here’s the title match courtesy The PBA Rebroadcast YouTube Channel:

So why am I talking about a bowling event on a childfree blog? Well, truth be told it fits here, because of something that happened during the entire TV finals.

A number of times PDW blew up on someone in the audience for moving around during his approach. For those of you who aren’t bowlers, you have no idea how distracting that is. That’s why you’re not supposed to begin your approach until after the bowlers on the neighboring lanes have completed their shots. Even a little bit of motion out of the corner of your eye can really throw you off, and when a $60,000 check was on the line, I think he had every right to get angry over it.

Come to find out later (reading the comments of one individual who was in the gallery on another blog) that the culprit was a little kid that was in like the front row of the gallery, right in the peripheral vision of the bowlers. I think it goes without saying that little kids are squirmy and can’t sit still for more than about 2 minutes. So why the HELL would you bring a little kid to the US Open? Do you seriously think they’re interested in professional bowling? Unless they’re just a bowling prodigy or come from a family of professional/serious recreational bowlers, I highly doubt they’d be remotely interested in watching a bunch of old guys bowl. Bowling isn’t a “spectator sport” so to speak, it’s a “genteman’s sport.” Not super exciting to watch unless you’re REALLY into bowling, like me or other hardcore bowlers/fans.

I think this is a prime example of parents bringing their kids to a place that’s inappropriate. If anything, there was a whole space behind the bowlers that they could have gone where they would have been out of view of the competitors. What’s so hard about that? Why couldn’t they have acknowledged PDW and just moved somewhere that it wouldn’t be an issue. It’s not that big of a deal, well, if you think a little kid has any place in the audience at a pro bowling tournament.

I don’t know. I have mixed feelings about this. Parents should know kids can’t sit still. I think the appropriate course of action would have been to move, but that’s just me. I guess I blame the parent as much as the kid in this case, the same way I blame parents for not teaching their kids bowling etiquette (like I’ve complained about on this blog before). Whatever the case, I might be one of the few siding with PDW on this matter, but I am.

What do you think?

Parents/Children At The Bowling Alley (Again)

So last Friday my team for my recreational league (consisting of me, my mother, and my youngest sister) went for preliminary bowling to establish our handicaps and such for week one. I of course got no handicap because of my 200+ average (and in fact bowled my best series to date of 844, with a painful 299 third game – SO CLOSE!!!), but that’s beside the point. We were put on a lane next to a mother and her two young kids who were bowling together as a team, and the entire night was hellish.

As is typical of little kids, they just ran up and fired when we were on our approach and in full concentration. A lot of people don’t realize just how distracting that really is! When I’m on the approach I’m in full concentration mode, my focus is entirely on my target spot on the lane and getting the right ball speed and rev rate for the lane conditions. Even so, there’s still something called peripheral vision and when you see someone walking up on the neighboring approach from your peripheral vision it’s distracting as all hell. This is why common bowling etiquette says to wait until the person on the neighboring lane finishes his/her shot before you begin your approach.

Of course, the mother of the two kids did NOTHING to stop them from doing this very distracting behavior. I was getting more and more irritated at the situation and I finally took things into my own hands and stared them down and said very sternly the Spanish equivalent of “DON’T GO WHEN I’M GOING!!!!”

The mother uncorked on me for correcting her kids, but she wasn’t doing a damn thing about it so of course I was going to take matters into my own hands. As a hardcore bowler I take bowling etiquette very seriously. I won’t even take my place on the approach until my neighbors are done, much less start my shot. Of course, it could be that I just take the game way too seriously for an amateur (but trying to go professional) bowler. Who knows.

Alas, I love my PBA experience league (yes, I bowl in two different leagues) ┬ábecause there’s not a kid in sight at that one and everyone observes proper etiquette because it’s actually enforced by league officials. I’d still like to see adult-only bowling centers, though I think those are a bit of a stretch. I understand the appeal of bowling as a family activity and strongly support it as such, but please teach your kids proper bowling etiquette. It’ll make the game more enjoyable for all of us. Thank you.