Last night the firm held its bowling tournament, the 2011 version of the Carmen Salvino Akron-Canton Invitational, at Sawmill Lanes in northwest Columbus. From that one experience, it appears that Friday night kegling is alive and well in Columbus, Ohio.
This is not bowling as Grampa Neal would recognize it. The only common touchstones are a ball hurled toward pins and the propensity of bowlers to consume frosty adult beverages. But now the balls are brightly colored, flashing lights line the lanes, a mirrored disco ball is located overhead about every 10 lanes, and spotlight images of stars and moons roam across the darkened alleys. Loud music pumps out of the sound system, and music videos play constantly on large screens erected over the pin area. When Michael Jackson’s Billie Jean is played, don’t be surprised to see every bowler in the place bust a move or two.
Last night, the music video selections were a pretty eclectic mix. In addition to Billie Jean we heard Led Zeppelin, Peter Frampton, and AC DC, as well as a song by a woman who wore a bikini top that sprayed whipped cream and a song by a somewhat vulgar, heavily mascaraed woman who made it clear that she liked “the bass down low.” I also managed to confirm my cluelessness by asking someone the name of the woman singing the song that was playing and learning that it was teen idol Justin Bieber.
Unfortunately, my annual attempt at bowling last night was a pathetic failure. I do think my cultural horizons were broadened, however.