And so it was. The lovely Stephanie and I found ourselves driving around Maynard on Saturday night, fresh off a sub-par dinner at the Sit N’ Bull Pub. I had the ribs, she had the chicken. If you’ve never eaten there, let me do you a favor – don’t. It’s 47 minutes you will never get back. The food was about as generic as those new-fangled housing developments that are sprouting up everywhere. At least they put barbque sauce on the ribs – you don’t get barbeque sauce on your generic housing development house. What?

There we were, at 7:30 pm, wondering what to do with the rest of our night, when it hit me. Bowling! Dammit, we’ll go bowling! She agreed! Bowling it is! Bowling! Pressing the gas to the floor out of sheer excitement, we pulled into FastLanes Bowling, situated in the center of nearby Stow, Massachusetts. FastLanes only offers candlepins, which is a bit of a bummer, but hell, at least it’s something. In we go.

Upon walking in, I knew we were in for an interesting night. Oh, lemme tell you. It was one of those “bowl in the dark” nights. I can’t even say it was “glow-in-the-dark” bowling, although that very well might have been the event they were half-heartedly attempting to achieve. It was more like “let’s put some blinking christmas-type lights in the lanes, shine a few flashlights on the disco ball and turn off the lights in the alley and see what gives.”

What happened was the ultimate 30 minutes of candlepin bowling. Let’s put it this way, as I stepped up to the alley to bowl my very first ball, Quiet Riot was the musical selection over the crappy PA, one of those sound systems that was just plain embarassing where any remotely deep bass was fuzzed out. I remember the lyrics so clearly as I made my initial approach to bowl:

I’m frustrated and out-dated

I really wanna be over-rated

I’m a finder and I’m a keeper

I’m not a loser, and I ain’t no weeper

I got the boys to make the noise

Won’t ever let up, hope it annoys you

Join the pack fee the crack

Well now you’re here, there’s no way back!!!!!!

For the record, that’s Quiet Riot’s “Metal Health (Bang Your Head).” I just started laughing as I bowled my first ball. I mean, really laughing. We just couldn’t stop telling each other how ridiculous it all was. We were also treated to Ratt’s “Round and Round,” Rick Derringer’s “Rock and Roll (Hootchie Koo),” and Poison’s “Every Rose Has It’s Thorn.” It was pure bliss and pure cheese all rolled into one. Chiss? Bleeze? I dunno. Suburban bowling, you just can’t beat it.

Song now playing: Elton John – “Burn Down The Mission”