Thirty-One (28 of 31)

Stef and I drove down to Chelmsford on Wednesday and met up with Dad and John for an afternoon of duckpin bowling. We had a great time, the four of us. I don’t think I’d ever done duckpin bowling before, and the place we went, in Vinyl Square, was in the basement of a building I’ve driven by many, many times without ever really realizing there was a bowling alley there. That leant to this feeling that we had discovered something truly special and our own. Sure, there were other folks there, but it felt like we were all part of some exclusive club; we were in the know, as it were, and it was really something.

Dad and John did better than Stef and I, but that was okay. There was very little competing against each other. It was more about seeing if we could do better than ourselves, frame after frame. Anyway, as I said, it was a good time, and I don’t really feel equipped to describe it in any greater detail.

So, with bowling on the brain, let’s dig into Wednesday’s throwback of the day. Exactly three years ago, to the day, Stephanie and I were to be found bowling with a few friends of ours. Strange, these little coincidences…

Bowling & Billy Joel

We were supposed to go see Stef’s Dad today but things didn’t pan out because of the flu. Instead, Stef spent most of the day cleaning, (with a little help from me,) and I spent most of the day working on the new version of the Bastad. When all that was said and done we took some time out this evening to hang out with Stacey, Monica, and “Bob”. It was a fun evening, but like all evenings spent in smoky bars it has left Stef and I with awful sore throats and wretched smelling clothes.

We started off eating at Pizza Hut, which wasn’t all that bad except for my eating way too much damn pizza. Stef and I had eaten pizza just last night, so I don’t know why I woofed it down so fast, but I just did. I was regretting it before I’d even finished chewing the last bit of the last slice.

After dinner we went to a candlepin bowling alley in Nashua and played two strings in between two separate gaggles of high-schoolers, which was quite fun in and of itself. I love being around younger people. It reminds me of my misspent youth. I spent a good deal studying the group sitting to the right of us, potentially for inclusion in an upcoming story. One girl, a cute and intelligent looking brunette named Emma, particularly enthralled me. She and her three girlfriends were out with this one guy and I spent a great amount of time in between my turns imagining what their group dynamic was.

After bowling we went next door to a Chinese food place to sing karaoke. Stacey sang “Blue,” which was very appropriate and carried a slightly more melancholy tune there her previous renditions, thanks in part to her recent breakup. A few songs later, I got up and sang “We Didn’t Start The Fire” by Billy Joel, and the crowd was really into it. Karaoke, it turns out, is the closest I can get to having a band again.

And now I’m home and it’s past midnight so I’ll have to futz with the date to get this to appear right. Thank God I won’t have to deal with the same problem once I switch over to the new system.