Bowling a 73.
Last weekend, I went bowling for the first time in at least 15 years.
It was loud with Ariana Grande, there were strobe lights at three in the afternoon, and people still go bowling. That was perhaps the most shocking thing; it was so crowded with people actually having a good time! Crazy.
My mom and sister and I entered our fake names into the computer and set off. I did not hit a single pin the first two frames; apparently bowling is not like riding a bike. I said to myself, Just knock down something! My goal was "something."
Then I started to get the hang of it and got a strike. Now we're talking! I knocked down nine pins in the next frame and was super bummed that all ten didn't go down. My goal of "something" quickly became "get a strike every time" because I had already done it. Of course I should be able to do it again!
And of course I kept trying to replicate that strike - how many steps I took, when I swung my arm back, if I gave myself a pep talk or not, and whether it helped to walk in sync to N*Sync.
Conclusion: I'm a replicator.
The kids get through an afternoon without fighting, Annie naps without screaming, my cheesecake bakes without cracking, my jeans button without wincing, that conversation ends without tears, a day ends without too much wine... when things go "right," I try and replicate every detail to make it happen again, like a situational color-by-numbers.
It never works. Plus it makes me discontent with cracked cheesecake. Ridiculous.
Sure, I got a strike. A few times. But those strikes didn't negate gutter balls. It all counted, it was all fun, and I don't need to be a genius about something that doesn't really matter.
We're content with Regular until Excellent happens, and then Excellent feels like the only way. But it doesn't have to be. It shouldn't be. Let's be regular and cool with bowling a 73.