Friday, September 25, 2009

Struggling to find our team MOJO

It was only one week that the new and improved revamped lime up was in play before a change had to be made. While it may appear to an outside observer that Brian took the night off to try to get his mind right after last week's sub 400 series, the team knew(did we?) that he had a business trip planned. I do recall how manly he told us how he laid down the law at home and had scheduled his trip on Wednesday morning. "Oh, so you don't miss bowling?" his wife sarcastically inquired. "Yes, Damn it, Tuesday is my night with the boys!" Way to man-up bowling is Tuesday and the trip was, interesting.

In Brian's absence Dan took over the lead off spot and actually preformed for the first time this year progressively improving each game on the way to a 533 series ( 161, 176, 196). The team welcomed back founding team member Mark (not to be confused with FNG Mark) to take over the #2 spot in the lineup. Mark was all excited as he cast aside the old 8 pounder and displayed his newly acquired black beauty. At times Mark looked like a seasoned pro, the pins exploding as his ball hooked skillfully into the pocket. At other times Mark struggled, unsure what was going to happen as he released the ball. It was at these times I recalled the old joke about Adam getting his first erection. Not knowing exactly what was happening he looked over to Eve and said: "Stand back, I'm not sure how big this thing is going to get!" Mark had a 400 series, finishing nicely with a 153 (128, 119, 153)

Pat was pumped over last week's nice performance and started out OK with a 162. The 2nd game 148 really was not all that bad either (Jim has had 3 games in the 140's in 3 weeks and is still maintaining a 172 average). Unfortunately, these 2 games were as good as it got for Pat as he rode a string of 5 mark less frames to finish the 3rd game with a 117. While falling short of the girly 120's it did exceed Brian 's low water mark from last week of 107. To make things worse, he actually did a "Brooklyn point" while he threw his 2nd ball. The fact that he had a whole rack (actually 9 pins) may have confused him. As he dug in his pockets for the non existent remaining quarters, he declared: "Looks like it is back to practice 3 days a week."

In the battle for the team's top average, Jim out dueled JD 523 to 458 (not much of a battle anchorman!). As is his norm this year, Jim tossed in a 149 just to keep his average from spiking too high or too early. Is it strategy, or is he trying to give JD a fighting chance? Much like last year's explanations (scab on leg and clenched butt cheeks to avoid a bowel blowout), Jim produced a new one for this year......"I have a pain in my ass, don't you know?"

Not much to be said about JD's 458 other than a girly 121 is always going to keep you short of the 525 series he is capable of achieving. Like Pat earlier, JD acknowledged it may be time for a practice session.

We went 2-5 and now sit at 12-9 for the year.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Taking us to the next level

In the past few seasons the lineup has typically included Brian leading off (nothing intimidates an opponent like an erratic straight ball knocking over 5 random pins), Pat and Muck in the middle and Dan bringing up the year (easy fellas, you'll need to get your gay porn references at another site). While this lineup has produced moderately successful results a change was necessary to get to the next level (without actually gaining any real bowling skill of course). Hoping this modification would have the same results as the Doug Collins to Phil Jackson change, the team went the free agency route and was able to lure JD off the golf course a month early (you may ask yourself: "who golfs at 9:00 on a Tuesday night?" but that was the reason provided in the past for not making the commitment to the team). When advised of the preseason mandatory training sessions, JD indignantly rolled his eyes and said "The season starts in September, I'll practice then!"

It was the confidence of a Tiger Woods and the "who needs preseason practice?" attitude of a Brett Favre that convinced the brothers that JD was the man to take over the anchor spot in the lineup. The 2009-2010 lineup was now set: Brian (the team's most improved player PNB*), Dan, Pat, Jim M. and JD. While this line up produced the same results as week one's 5-2, it does have the feel of much greater potential.

In the interest of unbiased reporting I will simply list each bowler's scores. In the interest of "its my blog" I will comment upon those scores. Brian: 107, 140, 151. Really, a 107? Where is the PNB Brian that we saw at the end of last year and has a 175 average potential? Maybe a little practice would help. Dan: 148, 158, 145. Ouch. Second consecutive week of all games hovering around 150. House ball and rental shoes anyone? Pat: 145, 216, 172. A lukewarm start after last week's anemic 392 series (yes, that is for THREE games) but a very nice rebound to 2 solid finishing games. I guess the nightly practice does pay off. Jim M.: 191, 147, 149 and JD: 188, 160, 140. I list these together since it is the battle the team wants to see. Who will emerge as the team's top bowler? If the first game is any indication (191 to 188) we are on our way to two 180+ average bowlers. If the 2nd two games (Jim 148 avg) and JD (150) are any indicator, we will have five 150 bowlers.

After 2 weeks we are 10-4 and in 1st place. If there is any question why some of the good teams hate us try to digest these facts. There are 83 bowlers that have bowled this year. We have 3 of the bottom 15 (Pat at 68, Dan at 74 and Brian 77 ...tied with a Mini ME!!) . JD is 53 and our top bowler is 50th!!!!! We have no one higher than the 60th percentile. Thank goodness for handicaps.

*PNB post new ball

Saturday, September 12, 2009

An Evening of firsts

For the third consecutive off season, the team spent considerable time and energy searching for the elusive 5th man to round out the roster. First it was Mark P. who jumped ship in search of the American dream. Mark will be remembered for the famous gutter / spare combo which will forever be affectionatley referred to as a "Prybel". Next it was Ass-pan who fell pray to the pressures of being a dad (do I hear a whip?). Do we not all contemplate removing our shoes every time we stand in a urine puddle as some sort of preverse way of paying homage to Rick's bizarre behavior? Finally, there was Mark the II, also giving the same "I am so important to the company I just can't be spared for one everning of the week" reason. Three letters sums this up......"F" "N" "G".

Speaking of FNG's...Los Diablos welcomes its fourth 5th man in as many years. Clearly the core four has done a respectable job in the past considering the overall lack of bowling skill relative to the rest of the league. Could JD's presence propel the team to its first ever plus 800 average? It did look promising when the team achieved its first beer frame of the season on the first night...could this be the start of something that occurs on a regular basis?

Over the years, this blog has taken some criticism for a bias for and against certain team members. While I continue to threaten to provide "editor" authority to all team members, I have yet to pull the trigger, gong with the "if you want to write a blog, create your own" philosphy. In the following paragraph, I will try to present unbiased facts only (supplied by the new Villa Park Men's league website).

We won the evening 5-2. Misfits went 0-7. JD's 283 one game handicap puts him on the front page as the 2nd high handicap game of the evening. Los Diablos' 1137 handicap series was the 3rd highest, also getting a spot on the front page. There were results of 75 bowlers listed. Jim's 182 average was 30th place. JD's 175 average was 39th place. Brian's 158 was 55th place. Dan's 143 was good for 68th (tied with Dean Corn!) and Pat's 130 was good for 75th place.

Enough said about biased reporting, the facts speak for themselves.