Books: Guide to Natural Bowling

>> Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Browsing a local used book shop, I came across this gem: Guide to Natural Bowling by Victor Kalman, the Bowling Editor of Sports Illustrated (circa 1961). As opposed, I suppose, to a guide to UNnatural bowling, as practiced by vampires and werebowlers.

Kalman's opus features advice from "a board of 55 famous bowling experts," all of whom are listed on four pages at the beginning of the book, along with their credits. A highlight:

Olga Gloor, Chicago, Illinois. 1959 World's Invitational Match Game Champion. Member of 1954 WIBC Team Champions. "Queen of Chicago Bowlers," 1956.

The front cover promises a money-back guarantee, and inside we learn, "The publishers of this book guarantee results! After thoroughly practicing the methods in this book for three months, if you do not raise your average score by 20 pins, we will return your purchase price." An address is listed, and then we're told, "On receipt we'll return your 35c. NO QUESTIONS ASKED."

Come on - a thirty-five cent investment, with the promise of your money back if you don't raise your average by 20 pins!? I had to buy this book. Of course, it cost me a dollar, not 35 cents, so I'm not sure I'll get the full return on my investment if the methods don't work for me. I'm also going to have to find a bowling alley in these parts. Seeing as there's still a roller rink, you'd think that would be easy - but I haven't seen an alley in my travels.

The line illustrations inside this book are really what sold me. Unfortunately I can't scan those in, as laying the book on the scanner would break the spine of this little beauty, and I'm not about to do that. You'll just have to look for a copy of your own...


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