by Carol Mancini

NORWALK — Over the years I have heard of strange happenings in a number of bowling centers but never experienced the unexplainable – – – – – – – – – – until last week.

I arrived at Cal Bowl on Thursday around 8:30 a.m. As usual, the lane machine was automatically running the length of each lane – – – – – pushing the pins off the back of the pin decks, cleaning and dressing for the day. When all the lanes were done, the lane machine was put away. About an hour later the mechanic arrived and immediately called my attention to lane 15. A single pin was sitting on the pin deck. All other 53 pin decks were bare!

As the day went on, employees came one by one to tell of other unexplainables.

* The arcade manager finds pennys on the carpet quite often. The vacuum is run at closing and pennys are there at opening.

* The arcade manager — that Thursday morning — relayed to me around 10 a.m., that the DVD player in his car hadn’t worked in 2 years, but on his way in IT START ED TO PLAY! (That’s 2 in 2 hours.)

* The mechanic who noticed the pin on #15 went to the back to investigate. As he walked towards #15 the “dead pin retrieving stick” jumped from its hook and landed in front of the machine. His retreat to my office would have broken a record.

* In the five years that I have been at Cal Bowl many employees and customers have testified to seeing a dark figure pacing back and forth on lanes 1 thru 4.

* After closing and all the lights are turned off a ball of light is seen running back and forth on the wall next to lane 55.

* But the strangest sight of all was on a Friday night about a month ago. The bar and snack bar were closed. Only one lane was finishing up. A single deskman was on duty. A noise from lane 54 attracted his attention. A ball was rolling ACROSS THE APPROACHES towards lane one. He left the desk and caught the ball enroute. After looking around, seeing no one, he called the mechanic. He was in the shop! Maybe we’ll leave the lights on later!

If you have experienced similar incidents or have a good story – – – -call me, E-Mail me, or make contact (any way!)

Carol Mancini
California Bowling News