Bowling and toilet breaks.


The Sunday event of playing bowls with another club went smoothly. Most clubs don’t open before 10 am. This is probably linked to those strict license laws.  We can drink ourselves into a stupor but not before a certain time. We were told to arrive at 9.30am in Goulburn and naturally found the door closed. We walked around and found another door slightly ajar which allowed us to sneak in. It might well have been the door that the cleaners and staff used to prepare for the day.

No-one was at the desk and this will probably be our last and only time we entered a club without having to show proof of identity. Prince Frederick of Denmark; please note! After entering the bowling room upstairs, we noticed many of the Goulburn’s bowling members being present with most of our own club’s members. I was given a light green t-shirt with our club’s name  ‘The Berrima Social Bowling Club.’ emblazoned on it. It had a dark blue collar. The Goulburn club all wore a dark-blue outfit which included pants. All had name tags which was a great relief. I just hope the ladies did not think I was perving when staring at their chests trying to get to their names!

After a while we were all split into different teams. I was supposed to be a ‘lead’ in my team. I was unprepared for that role. I asked what this meant and was informed it meant my side would start the first bowl by tossing a coin.

‘Ok, I said,’ and dug out a coin, flipped it into the air and gravity did the rest. It fell onto the ground. ‘You have to call it,’ an opposing team-member said.  It turned out you have to say ‘heads or tails,.’ before flipping it. How does one know those things? I am a fast learner though, and  successfully flipped it the second time. I said ‘heads.’ It happened to land with the queen’s head showing. I bowled first. A giant leap forwards.

It turned out the two different teams were all playing together with each other and not against each other. Isn’t that a giant step forwards? This is social sport at its best. For me, a dream come true. I propose that when  Germany plays England next in soccer, that each team have a fifty- fifty mix of each others players. This will do away with all forms of violence and unnecessary competition. We play for the joy of the sport.

As I had put our own club’s t-shirt over my long sleeved shirt I was told that a T-shirt is not normally worn on top of a normal shirt. Panic struck. I wasn’t going to strip down to my singlet. The sight would have been so undignifying, some might have fainted. I have long passed the age of once perhaps being seen as the Prince of Passion, polar necked golden chained, God of the pounding surf. ( I never was.) A man over seventy should never be seen in his singlet, not even in the dark.

There were two games before lunch and one after. The lunch was ordered before hand and at 12.30 we all filed into a special dining room. Most of us went for the ‘Roast Pork with Vegetables. I had earlier inquired if this would include ‘Crackling.’ The answer was in the positive. Boundless enthusiasm followed after that bit of news. I am sure it improved my bowling.

After lunch we all filed back and took our positions behind the greens again. Of course with most of us full of the Roast Pork and apple sauce now queuing up in our intestines for digestion, it should not come a surprise that some sneaked in a hurried trip to the toilet. This happened to one of our own players. ‘I have to go to the loo’, John said. Fair enough, everyone understood and when it became his turn to bowl we all patiently waited his return. We looked to the floor and engaged in some chit-chat. However, it took a bit more time and after about ten minutes of waiting we were just about to suggest a rescue operation when, much to our relief, John re-appeared and took his turn bowling. His bowling was superb.

We had a great day.


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30 Responses to “Bowling and toilet breaks.”

  1. auntyuta Says:

    “We play for the joy of the sport.” Good point!! 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      Yes, Uta. The very verb to ‘play’ sport means it has to remain a game of ‘play.’
      Competitive sport when taken too seriously becomes almost like a war.
      Sometimes on the ABC when the news comes to an end one often hears a man shouting away commentating on rugby. He sounds way over the top, almost hysterical.

      It makes me anxious and Helvi switches it off often before the weather rapport. I prefer the weather rapport to come first so I don’t hear this man getting so over the top with his raucous shouting.

      Liked by 2 people

  2. berlioz1935 Says:

    German and English football players playing in mixed teams? That will never happen. The thought of it alone will bring out all the nastiness those misguided patriots on both sides are able too.

    Co-operation is the civilised flip-side of the brutality of individual conflict resolution.

    Liked by 1 person

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      Well, in bowling it happens and it works perfectly. Each player does his or her best and the fun is that we are all there for each others’ enjoyment and company.

      If nastiness appears in sport it might be it is because of the winning above all urge. Co-operation works, brutality does not.
      You are right again, Berlioz.


  3. leggypeggy Says:

    I’ve only been bowling twice but it was a lot of fun.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. petspeopleandlife Says:

    Sounds as if a good time was had by all. Heads and tails, funny how that got started and has been in use for a very long time.

    Pork and applesauce sounds great. Seems to have had a good effect on the bowler who played really well.

    Loved this post. Light humor is a very good thing.

    Liked by 1 person

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      Yes, Yvonne. I knew of head and tails but I was flummoxed with so much going on, Most have been playing for years and know all the rules.

      I thought that flicking the coin was just a preliminary to start the game. It really had to be called ‘head or tails’ in order for one of the two separate sides to start bowling. Not to call either heads or tails meant than we were not any further in starting up.

      This is of course in the booklet of rules which I did not read, I could not read. It was so boring.

      I mean does anyone ever read those pamphlets or rules that come with games or gadgets..?
      Our cordless vacuum cleaner came with a twenty-one page booklet.

      One needs to have the life endurance of Methuselah to read all the pamphlets.

      Liked by 1 person

      • petspeopleandlife Says:

        I’ve never read pamphlet and don’t intend to begin now. I have briefly looked at what came with mhy Canon 60D and I have kept those instructions. BUt I’m dense and can’t understand most of what has been writtem. They don’t write for someone of average intelligence.


  5. Yvonne Says:

    I’m glad you’re enjoying the gentle game of carpet bowls. Don’t get talked into lawn bowls, it’s a great game, but pretty darned competitive.

    Gerard, I’m desolate this winter, my poor bowling arm, which I carelessly broke in Naples, hasn’t healed properly, so I’m missing out on all the camaraderie, laughter and good cake. It’s a sad life. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      Well, Yvonne.
      Spring is almost here. I am sorry your arm is still not better but do hope it will improve. I bet you could be a good bowler with your other arm, especially if it is left oriented. 😉
      Carpet bowling is much lighter!

      Many of our players gave up lawn bowling because of arthritic hands or damaged arms. Some have a kind of prong with which they pick up the bowl because not able to bend down and pick the bowl up. Some pick up the bowl for those that have difficulty bending.

      I have watched lawn bowling and you are right, not much laughter and they are all dressed in white.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Dorothy Brett Says:

    Good on ya Gerard, maybe a new hobby for you.

    Liked by 1 person

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      Well, Dorothy.
      There are all those people all in the same boat wanting to enjoy life and foster friendship.

      The bowling is just perfect. The bending down to bowl is great exercise.

      People don’t bend down enough, and I suppose that might well be because bending down for no reason would look funny.

      I can’t imagine people bending down while on the way to the shops or work.



  7. Robert Parker Teel Says:

    Sounds fun and a nice companionable atmosphere.
    An alternative title “Bowing, Bowling & Toilet Bowling”

    Liked by 1 person

  8. kaytisweetlandrasmussen83 Says:

    It sounds like a lot of fun. I have watched a few games, and even did a painting once of a bowling group dressed in white clothes. I can see there are many benefits to the game. Good fun, good exercise. and a good way to make friends.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. shoreacres Says:

    I understand the coin flip, which is the usual way to begin a football game here in the States. This “crackling” is a mystery, though. Is that fried pork skins, as it is here? Or something else? Whatever it is, I’m glad it was good!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. kaytisweetlandrasmussen83 Says:

    Glad to see shoreacres. Good to see her onboard. I thought maybe her internet was down.

    Liked by 1 person

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      Yes, Kayti, The images on TV about the floods in Texas show calamitous situations. People sitting in their wheelchairs waist deep in water and more water on the way. A shelter meant for 4000 people now house 9000.

      Linda from shoreacres shows remarkable calm brushing up on British cooking.

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Andrew Says:

    A 50-50 soccer team will be interesting. I guess one person has to be dual nationality or perhaps an independent. And what happens with a penalty shoot out because the Germans always win. I think I would enjoy bowls. Anything that includes crackling gets my support.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Big M Says:

    Playing for fun, plus a roast from the bain-marie.


  13. doesitevenmatter3 Says:

    Your bowling fun makes me laugh out loud, Gerard! I’m glad you are having fun, and are sharing it with us! 🙂
    Yay for bowling! 🙂
    Roast pork and applesauce sound heavenly! I made a pork roast last weekend and used some of the pork to make Mexican Fajitas…with several kinds of peppers and onions. I will use the rest for sandwiches, etc. I will definitely add some applesauce to the menu now. 🙂
    HUGS!!! 🙂


  14. doesitevenmatter3 Says:

    PS…I put up a WP post that is silly. Might bring some laughs and smiles. 🙂


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