I really try not to talk about work, sports, and/or politics so much in this here blog…I mean, who really cares what goes on in an independent record store, I hate sports, and I’m not the political type of blogger. This is a little different though…
I was talking with a few employees about the Democratic Primary and someone jokingly said, “Why don’t Hilary and Obama just have a bowl-off already?”
So I say, “Oh no, Obama can’t bowl. Didn’t you see that “news” story about his lack of skills?”
Employee #1: “What? What are you talking about?”
Me: “God, it was all over the news, like it was some big fucking deal. I mean, he’s Black…”
That’s right…I went there. It did not go unnoticed.
Employee #2: (Kind of aggro) “Are you saying black people can’t bowl?”
Me: “Well, let’s see, the last time I watched professional bowling, in like the 80s, I didn’t notice many brothers on the pro circuit.”
Employee #2: “I’ll take you to THUG BOWL and you’ll see how good Black people can bowl!”
Me: “Hey man, I’m sorry about making a sweeping generalization about Blacks and bowling but let’s not turn this into a race issue…it was a joke.”
And it all kind of ended there with everyone looking kind of uncomfortable and me wondering, “Do Black people bowl? Have there been any Black pro bowlers? I did really just assume that they didn’t…am I a dick…or even worse, a racist for thinking Blacks don’t bowl or can’t be good at bowling?”
Hey, Canacorn, what does this look like to you?!
Well, I decided to do some research and educate my ignorant ass.
First up: According to my pal, Wiki, “There are many forms of bowling, with the earliest dating back to ancient Egypt.” And where in the world is that, my little Carmen Sandiegos? In eastern NORTH AFRICA!
Second: The National Negro Bowling Association (NNBA) formed on August 20, 1939, in Detroit, Michigan. The TNBA Story.
Third: William Pierson Bowling Alley…the first African-American owned and operated bowling alley in the United States in 1940.
Fourth: American Bowling Congress National Championships; Professional Bowling, May 24, 1951
The 1951 ABC championship was the first integrated bowling event for African-American “keglers,” as bowlers are called.
Hey, asshole, look again! Are you some kind of racist?!
Man oh man…Who knew? Not me. So, are there any Black pro bowlers? You bet!
Fuller Gordy – of the Motown Record family became the first African-American professional bowler in 1960.
Louise Fulton – the first African-American woman to win the championship for professional women in bowling. In 2000, she was posthumously elected to the International Women’s Bowling Congress Hall of Fame, the first African American to receive this honor.
George Braham III – In 1986, Indiana-born George Braham III became the first African-American national champion in professional bowling.
Cheryl Daniels – won the U.S. open bowling championship in 1995 to become the first African American to hold the national championship in women’s professional bowling.
Wow…I’m a dick.
My apologies to all the Black bowlers and non-bowlers out there.
Black History Month’s Tribute to George Branham III
Much thanks to this site for all the information.