by Randy Ooney
My Nickel’s Worth by Randy Ooney
Manner’s the Butler was a prominent figure in TV ads 20 or 30 years ago. Funny thing, although I remember him, I can’t remember what he sold. Judith somebody now writes a column as Miss Manners. She will tell you how many forks you need at a formal dinner, or when to send wedding invitations, but I have never seen advice on manners protocol during league bowling.
Unfortunately, during sporting events we see hometown biased cheering when the other team suffers a misfortune. A crucial error by the shortstop, a fumble or interception at the goal line, a missed free throw, etc. What the average person knows in the back of his mind, but keeps it there, is that unless you are Secretariat or the New York Yankees, you can expect to lose 50% of the time. Walter Ray Williams Jr. has won more PBA tournaments than any other bowler, but he also has more second place finishes than others. Phil Mickelson is consistently in the top five among world rankings, but is famous also for his many failures. And even if you’re proficient in one sport, you may have failings in another. If I were to challenge President Obama to a bowling match and a free throw shooting contest, I can reasonably predict the outcome, 1-1.
Bowling centers by nature, have quite a din during league battles. But in a league session last week, one of the teams a couple of pairs over seemed unreasonably loud while cheering for their teammates. Alcohol sometimes has that effect on people, and as I said before, the centers can be loud by nature, so let the steam blow off. But then into game 2, a respected bowler from the team opposing the blowhards left a pocket 7-10 in the tenth frame causing the outcome of the game to lean toward the foghorns. The cheering was louder than if AP took one 90 yards for a TD against the Packers.
The moral of the story: It’s okay to cheer at Target Field if Miguel Cabrera or AROD strikes out. It’s okay to cheer at Mall of America Dome if Aaron Rodgers throws an interception. It’s okay to cheer at Target Center for anything because the Wolves need it. But if you’re bowling, and your opponent leaves a 7-10 or misses a 5 pin, it’s NOT okay to cheer.