Rolling Along In My Own Lane

19611292 - red bowling ball is rolling on wooden lane. ten pins are waiting for the shot.

What’s all this stuff I keep reading about bowling alleys?

I’m talking about all the bowling alleys I see included as amenities in a bunch of high-end listings of late. For example, Petra Stunt’s $195 million dollar estate has a bowling alley. (It also has a beauty salon, a gym, a wine tasting room, and massage and tanning rooms. My question is: are all of these within walking distance to each other?  Perhaps,  one has to drive to each of them in the Formula One cars I like to imagine the racing heiress keeps on hand).

Many other high-end listings, as well as historic buildings, list bowling alleys as amenities. This begs the question: Who the heck is doing all of this bowling?
The last time I bowled with any consistency was when I was a kid, and that was only on rainy days (which is also when I would usually visit museums). As an adult, most of my bowling experiences have occurred after having a few drinks with a group of friends and someone would say, “Hey, why don’t we go bowling?”
Yes, yes, bowling is good clean family safe entertainment, and different professional bowling tours and tournaments used to get some prime television coverage. There was even what I’ll call a game show of sorts called “Bowling for Dollars.” My grandfather watched it.
But all of that has changed, and bowling has been on the decline since the mid-80s. Sure, it has a resurgence of popularity from time to time (its biggest bump coming with the release of “The Big Lebowski“), but then the surge eventually wanes.
My personal bowling experience, and those of my cohorts, is framed mostly by living in Los Angeles. Bowling is probably much more popular in the Midwest, where they have things like rain and snow…
A few years ago a survey discovered that having a balcony or patio was a big draw for people who were renting or buying condos. The same survey also found that patio use falls precipitously after the first three months of tenancy. Well, I guess you’ve got to have some place to keep your bicycle (which also gets used a lot for the first three months).
To be fair, Ms. Stunt’s bowling alley was installed by the previous owners, Aaron and Candy Spelling. I’d like to imagine that after a hard day on the set of “Beverly Hills 90210” they would all unwind, while  chucking a few frames (and having their personal chef serve up bowling alley style burgers). 
But then I can’t help but wonder if there was one night, maybe three months after moving in, the Spelling’s eventually tired of bowling.  And I think about that neglected bowling alley, the one they were so excited over when they first put it in…  Oh, well, I guess you gotta have some place to keep your bicycle.

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