String Pinsetters

We often don’t notice the differences and changes until something very different comes along.

I’ve been competing in bowling leagues since I was a kid. I’ve bowled in different centers, with different approaches, different lane styles, different ball returns, different scoring systems and different pins. It all still felt like bowling.

Now, there is talk of allowing pinsetters that have strings attached to the top of the pins for faster and more efficient setting of the pins. All the string pinsetter has to do is pull the pin back to position. No dead pins in the gutter that have to be cleared manually. No pins getting stuck in the spinning mechanisms that put them back in place.

All of a sudden this feels like a BIG SHIFT.

It feels like a change that would make bowling, no longer bowling.

It feels like it would change the dynamics of the game too much with the way pins move around after a ball hits them.

Of course, all those other variables over time like ball technology, lane surfaces, and oil application techniques to the lane also changed the game, but the feeling was different somehow. There were always balls in the game. There was always oil or some other sort of lubricant for the lane surface in the game (since I started at least), and there was always a lane surface even if the material changed. Now, they are adding something that wasn’t there before. Something visible and it really does affect the psychology of recognizing a change.

The world is filled with changes happening all around, yet it often doesn’t feel like it because most are invisible to us in our daily life. Then the visible changes start to happen and human nature is to freak out a bit. To think this visible change is only going to be negative, that there is no positive that can come out of it. Of course, that is a possibility, but more often than not, things get better, but first they feel different before being accepted as better. Different isn’t easy to handle for the human brain, but with proper courage and leadership, people can be persuaded.

Perhaps the future of bowling is string pinsetters. That doesn’t feel right to me, but I could be persuaded. There are bigger issues than this all around the world, perhaps we should all take this same stance more often.

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