Zen and the Art of Skee-Ball

9 Feb

Inside the miner’s Landing building, on the Seattle waterfront, is an arcade. The whole waterfront is one big tourist cheese trap, by and large, and out of town rubberneckers clutter up the flow but hey, live and let.

Joshy fact: I love arcades

Bridget and I drop quarters in “whack-a-rat” then move on to “stomp-a-spider”. Each kiddie machine spews a little tongue of blue tickets to collect and redeem for Chinese finger traps, parachute men and Snickers.

She has never played Skee-Ball, the perennial arcade/carnival classic game of balls and holes. A player rolls a ball up a ramp, over a jump and hopefully through a hole. Each hole is assigned a point value based on how difficult they are to land. A game is 9 throws.

Well it turns out that Skee-Ball is not only great marital glue (we were having a spat before we went to the arcade) but Bridget is some sort of freakish Skee-Ball master. She sinks the coveted 10,000 point hole each game… a feat! I have sank the 10k hole like twice in my life. She reels back and throws the ball, that bangs and leaps and POW she beats the high score on the machine…

We high five, we cheer, we collect out tickets and play game after game.
We have 94 tickets but the dude behind the prize counter tells B she has 100…what should we get?
20 tootsie rolls? 3 plastic penguins? 5 brand new pencils?

Then we see the fake jade Buddhas. 100 tickets each I point out that the Divine One is holding a Skee-Ball, or at least what looks like one. It’s perfect.
The Buddha of Skee-Ballers.

The next day we go back and claim another. There are 6 varieties of Skee-Ball Buddhas…we will have a proper shrine by the end of the week.


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