Monday, February 7, 2011

Holy Mackerel...

As much as I've poked fun at YouTube over the years, I have to admit that I've found a lot of videos over there that have simply made my day. What follows are two of those videos, each featuring a Saturday afternoon candlepin bowling show out of Boston that I used to watch when I was a kid (explanatory link provided for anyone who has never heard of, never mind enjoyed, the candlepin experience). One thing I hate about Virginia: there are no candlepin lanes here. Nearly everything is ten pin (which is okay), with a duckpin place here and there (which I have no use for). I'm a candlepin guy to the bottom of my heart, and even if I never set foot in New England (or, for that matter, eastern Canada) again, that's the way I'm going to stay.

Having been raised on candlepin bowling, I'm obviously biased in its favor. But the fact is, it's a hell of a lot harder to play than ten pin. My personal best score for a single candlepin string is 144, and that was a fluke -- I was always happy whenever I managed to break 100, and I bowled in candlepin alleys for years before moving to Virginia and switching to ten pin. Man, ten pin was ridiculous -- my seventh or eighth string of that, I scored a 212. I ended up quitting it because I thought it was too easy. I miss candlepin, and the degree of difficulty it poses.

But Paul Berger made it look easy as pie in the two videos below. In "Candlepin Bowling" (the show I used to watch), two bowlers would bowl three strings apiece, and whoever had the higher total at the end would come back the next week and face a new opponent. After two strings, Berger stood at 307. In the third string, he bowled a 193, finishing up at 500 even. The 500 triple is totally impressive in its own right. But 193 is the highest I have ever seen anyone score in one candlepin string. You gotta watch this, it is un-fucking-real...









It's hard enough getting one strike in a string in this sport, let alone five.

Man, that was beautiful...

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