160 Bowling Balls Play Hide And Go Seek


Weird | By Jay Dawson | July 15, 2021

It is not so very surprising to make discoveries while doing renovations on your home. Sometimes it is of the very unwelcome kind, such as water or sewage pipes lying in unexpected spots, or that one’s parcel of land is smaller than previously believed. No fun any of these, certainly!

Or it could be something in the vein of a handwritten note hidden in the walls for the next owner, or some other sentimental item left to commemorate a loved one Or, just maybe, there are no big surprises to be unearthed in a particular home. Not dramatic, but possible!

All those possibilities have logic. One can imagine why they did it, or why they did nothing. What it’s hard to make sense of is what someone did that was later discovered by a man in Michigan getting rid of the back landing of his house: hide 160 bowling balls.

An Odd Find

It was on July 1st that David Olson was dismantling the stars in the rear of his Muskegon home. He was, of course, little suspecting to encounter mass amounts of sporting goods. But in the demolition process, he noticed an object partially hidden in the sand behind a group of cinder blocks there. It was a round object: a bowling ball. Not necessarily totally flummoxing, had it stopped at just the one.

"That was one of the bowling balls. I didn't think a whole lot of it. I was kind of assuming maybe there were just a couple in there just to fill in. The deeper I got into it the more I realized it was just basically an entire gridwork of them making up the weight in there," said Olson in a newspaper interview.

A Surprising Answer

It was the stuff of the inexplicable, the unfathomable. That someone, again, could have hidden a cherished bowling ball inside a home they were leaving behind for one reason or another, is eminently understandable. It might have been the preferred ball of a loved one who passed, or maybe it was just forgotten somehow.

But it was none of those. And we know this because of perhaps the most bizarre detail in the whole story: a reasonable explanation. After crying out to the heavens for some kind of answers – in the way we now do, social media – Olson received an answer from former employees of the Brunswick bowling ball company, who related that workers commonly took home balls that could not be used to serve in place of gravel or sand in home construction projects.

What To Do With So Many Bowling Balls

And with that solution settling nerves jangled by the initial riddle, more prosaic concerns may be addressed, such as what Olson and his wife might possibly do with the unexpected inheritance of 160 bowling balls. He confirmed, after all, that as the former Brunswick employees who reached out to him said, that they are all unusable for their intended purpose, forcing the use of some creativity. Could the couple possibly think of something?

And apart from having donated some for a local church’s bowling ball cannon, and others for the legs of the custom furniture his father builds, Olson related some specific other plans."I plan to keep a lot of them, like some of the nicer looking ones, to do some edging," he said. "My wife is really crafty and wants to do some projects."

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