Julie Barrett is a freelance writer and photographer based in Plano, TX.

Monday mumblings

Fresh (almost) daily from Julie Barrett

It was a long weekend indeed. On top of the bowling tournament thing I got hit by a bug of some sort. I thought it might have been a rebound illness from my flu shot, but Paul wasn't feeling well either.

Chris had an interesting day yesterday, full of ups and downs. In the end he and his partner bowled over their averages - their current averages, not whatever average they went in on. I suspect it was the book average from last spring, before Chris got his new ball and upped his average by almost twenty-five pins. Still, that's no guarantee of doing well on unfamiliar lanes. Saturday he just barely made his book, but yesterday he averaged a good ten pins over his current average. Not bad. As in any tournament, a little over your average doesn't cut it. You've got to bowl out of your head to have a chance at placing. Chris and his doubles partner did that one year and he has a nice plaque on the wall for his efforts.

On the other hand, I could have hit a few parents and bowlers with a clue stick had I had one. A bowling center is already a noisy place, so when spectators start to hold conversations they naturally try to be heard over the din. Between the people sitting nearby and the people right behind us, it got bac. They got into one of those loops where one person can't hear so they talk louder, which means someone in the next group can't hear so THEY talk louder, and it goes into a death spiral of noise. Take it elsewhere.

Then there was the overly obnoxious teenage girl on the next pair of lanes. She couldn't let anything pass without talking about it at the top of her lungs. During the squad there was a drawing for a bowling ball. They sell tickets for a buck each and the money goes to youth scholarships. Saturday one of the coaches won. Yesterday a youth bowler won and this girl started whining loudly that it wasn't very fair because the kid who won wasn't even bowling. Excuse me?

In other news, the saga of the Xbox 360 continues. We, along with half the country, are trying to find one. We can live if we don't get one until January, but there is still some frustration. All along it seemed that Microsoft has been saying that oh, they learned their lessson from the original Xbox release and there would be plenty of the new one to go around. Ha, ha, and ha. Second shipments are starting to trickle into stores, but most stores are getting 1-4. And frankly, we have to wonder how many go into employees hands. What really kills me is the companies selling "bundles" at inflated prices. Well, that's capitalism at work, but it's also capitalism if I don't buy at their price. So there.

Paul did find one core system for sale on the way to work this morning, but we're holding out for the system system, or whatever they're calling it. By the time we buy a core and add on all the necessaries to make it a regular system we'll spend $100 more than the bundle. We can wait.

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