Alright, I’ll admit, the title is a little misleading. If you’re thinking about “professional bowler” in the conventional sense and are similarly looking to pursue a career in the bowling field, then I concede you will be slightly disappointed with the rest of this blog. On the other hand, if you are thinking about the word “professional” as one who earns money and or compensation for their skills and pure talent as a bowler, then you will not be disappointed in the slightest bit. Instead, you may be intrigued as to how this ingenue bowler could accomplish such a feat in one afternoon’s time.
Let me set the scene:
The Month: March.
The Day: A perfectly sunny and tempered Saturday afternoon. On such a beautiful day I chose, ney, was gifted the opportunity to spend the rare sunny Michigan day inside in a dark, yet festive, bowling alley.
The Location: The historic Garden Bowl in Detroit. (Fun fact, the Garden Bowl, located in the Majestic Theater, was built in 1913 and remains one of America’s oldest, active bowling lanes.)
The Mission: To support The Build Institute in their Bag It & Bowl It fundraiser, by supporting The Center for Financial Planning, my host company, who was a supporter of the event…yeah so lots of support was at play here.
Throughout my youth I would frequent bowling alleys with friends because they are fun, relatively cheap, and welcome all ages. Despite the consistently pleasant visits to the alley, my skill level never promised to be anything above mediocre, which was fine by me! I wasn’t entering any competitions, nor was I putting so much effort into my practice that lack of improvement was devastating to my self esteem.
Fast forward 10 years to the present. It’s the day of, the event and my arm is in rare, but fine, form. I’m seeing strikes and spares for the first time in years! Without bumpers! It’s what you might call a Christmas miracle in March. I was with three other coworkers and we were all astounded by the talent each of us was finding within ourselves. My nickname soon became “Clare The Spare,” after the strikes I was bowling seemed to elude me but I could still get that last tricky pin every time. I have to say, it was better then the nickname I gave my coworker: One Pin Jim, for that devilish, last pin that remained at the end of each frame.
We had bowled for so long that by the end of the day my old age had kicked in and my arm was starting to get quite tired. The scores were in, and despite our newbie status, my coworker and I WON (second place)! We each received gift cards to the local shop City Bird, aka we were paid for our bowling talents and are now professionals. That’s how that works, right?
It was a great day for more than just the fact that I am now a star bowler. It was a fun and meaningful event to support Build Institute, an amazing organization that provides valuable resources and training for a wide range of entrepreneurs in the city of Detroit. Even though the event was in my own backyard, I wouldn’t have participated without the help of my host company, Center for Financial Planning. I am always surprised and pleased when my host company in Southfield and can bring me closer to different communities within the city.
As for my future aspirations as a bowler, I think I should step off my second place podium and become an average Jane again. Just your regular, old bowler who goes for the fun and friends, and not for the trophies. It’s a life with less flash, cash, and gold, but I think I’ll manage.