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Went to a kiddie’s birthday bowling party this weekend. Out in the suburbs. H.o.p. had a great time. I took photos. Of people bowling. Yes, you who were there who will never find your way here, I was the older lady squatting on her haunches with a camera or right down on the floor of bowling’s beach, between bowling’s counterpart to ocean waves and the sunbathers soaking up the UV rays on their towels. Thankfully, people ignore me.
Not as ignorable was H.o.p. I don’t know if he took his queue from me pretty much lying down on the bowling beach (how else was I to get this shot) or if it was just the natural rebellious performer in him (“I’ll show you and your paltry rules”), or whether he was overcome by the blue Cosmic Bowling lights, but at one point he went parading down the beach, blithely interrupting bowlers and their goals, taking in the sights, not very worried that one of them might irritably make a pin of him. Marty went running after because I was too incapacitated with laughter to do anything parental and useful at the moment.
I noticed the American flag (as seen in the above photo in larger versions, click thru for those). There were no people, of course, bowing to the flag or saluting or even acknowledging its presence. People were just bowling, intent on the ball and the pins and their form, except for those part of the numerous birthday parties and they were going to be focused on keeping the kids under control and not tearing up the place on Coca-cola and birthday cake sugar highs.
Though I take for granted that many probably don’t even register consciously the presence of the flag marking territory, it certainly is part of the scene and carries a message.
Americans still need their flags everywhere, only I wonder how many now need their American flag lording it over even hobbies and purchases for less gung-ho crowing than wistful reassurance. Though I may be wrong on that. I have some of the bowling photos up at Flickr and another one shows an enticement for bowlers was winning a World Wide Entertainment (wrestling) style summer bowling party. The near human-sized ad featured a WWE “Superstar” by the name of Mr. Kennedy, a “heel” who has risen to evil greatness. I’ve a photo here.
I was going to write about how I don’t think WWE and bowling worshipers would like to think of themselves as using the American flag as a wistful, sad comfort blanket reassuring them of greatness, but my mind went POP when I saw the avidly worshiped WWE superstar was a Mr. Kennedy, and an evil heel. Not knowing what to make of the minds that dream up worlds such as these, but certain they have reasons for what they piece together toward the creation of manic fandom, I thought I’d just give a nod to this cultural mash-up rather than attempt a dissection.
All I know about anything is that money rules all.