Shooting Hoops or Making Spares

By Claude Johnson
Updated: December 25, 2008

CONNECTICUT — Should president-elect Barack Obama replace the White House bowling alley with a basketball court?

I realize we have more important questions to ask.

And I don’t know if all the talk in the news lately is misdirected, because the bowling alley takes up a different type of space then would a basketball court.

Will it be a full court? Will it be a new building, external to the White House proper, but still on the grounds? (Maybe with access via a secret tunnel?)

What’ll it be?

So the word “replace” is probably not accurate and maybe the furor is mostly to give the bowling industry something to talk about.

Anyway, what ever happened to bowling? Remember when bowling used to be on television all the time when we were kids?

I think the question of whether Obama wants to “replace” the White House bowling alley with a basketball court is really just a metaphorical one.

In reality, isn’t basketball just replacing bowling as a mindset, metaphorically?

Metaphorically, bowling is old and sedentary and stale. Basketball is new and active and vibrant.

Isn’t the real issue that “old thinking” is being replaced by “new thinking”?

Don’t get me wrong, I like to go bowling every couple of years. I also like miniature golf every few years.

But I like to play and watch basketball all the time.

I like “new thinking” all the time.

I think our country wants something new and fun and active and vibrant and exciting.

Obama wants a parquet floor. But really it’s a metaphor. That America wants something more.

(Besides, in bowling, who the hell knows how to keep the score?)

I just made that up, like, this second. So, sorry if it doesn’t conform to poetry standards.