10th anniversary post

It all started on a lark.

Ten years ago today, my brother offered to take me bowling, which I’d only done once in the previous seven years coming off of heel fractures. I took my brother up on the offer, however, and, while I wasn’t having much success knocking down pins, I at least found I was able to get the ball down the lane better than the previous time. It planted a seed that I could come back, and I started working on getting my bowling legs back, hopeful that I could become a league bowler again. A summer league came the following year, and, since then, all of my highs pre-injury had been bested, and I have been a league bowler continuously longer in my second bowling life than when I was originally one.

At the time, I’d been a computer user for more than ten years, and had had personal websites before, but I’d wanted an efficient way to keep my chat friends updated on my bowling progress. Some of my friends had blogs about their hobbies, so one of my own seemed to be the answer, and I started this one four days after my bowling outing. I was starting to see the possibilities, one of which was being able to link different bowling sites in the sidebar, so the concept of a bowling portal as part of the blog was the fruit, later adding the RSS feeds for national and international bowling news sites in order to stay connected to the latest bowling news. My Westgate Lanes home was not forgotten, and I found that I was able to convey the Westgate tournament schedule in the sidebar, as well. However, back to the bowling portal concept, it was noted by the founder of BowlingSeriously.com, who linked the blog on her site for the benefit of getting new bowlers started, which was really the point of it. If this has helped even one new bowler, it’s been a success.

Another thing I noted was that the local newspaper was no longer running a bowling column, so, seeing an opportunity to give something back to bowling for getting a second chance in the sport, I started posting local bowling news, and my regular readers know the result. It led to me offering to start a Facebook page for the Brockton Bowling Association in an effort to become involved on a larger scale. The late Bob Young, seeing my potential, recruited me for the board, and I’ve been able to help out at association events since, including the state tournament at Westgate two years ago. As a side note to this, I recently gave the blog its own Facebook page, which, in the last year, I’ve also been using to share bowling news in the larger New England region.

I didn’t want to write this post without noting how harmoniously my bowling and computing interests have merged, and I’ve told more than one person that I love being a bowler in the information age. Part of that also was becoming a user of bowling software, starting with Perfect Secretary when I offered to become the secretary of the online league on the BowlingCommunity forums. When the opportunity presented itself, I started using bracket software, first for association events, and, eventually, the Coke league. I need to mention, as well, that my media involvement also included becoming an amateur digital photographer and videographer, which has come into play both for this blog and on Facebook.

It is a happy coincidence that my half-sister came into my life at this time five years ago, and even that has had an impact on my bowling life, as her daughter is a Special Olympics bowler, and I’ve been able to cheer her on since Westgate Lanes started hosting the qualifier for the state games.

Looking ahead, my bowling world is in a state of transition right now, but hopefully to something good, and it is my hope that I’ll be able to continue to serve bowling in the area for at least another 10 years.

Finally, I want to thank everyone who’s been part of my bowling life, both in my real life and online. Knowing all of you has made my decision to make a comeback worth it. 🙂

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