Though he picked up bowling 12 years ago, ever since he got pretty good Brent Weidler has been talking about rolling a perfect game.
His friends describe him as an energetic, gregarious character who talks all the time anyway, but he really gets even more excited about a potential 300.
“It is something he's always wanted to do, and he's always talked about,” said Brian Cave, Pro Bowl West general manager. “He even asked, 'What do I get if I shoot a 300?'”
Well, last month Weidler's dream came true, and he's been telling everybody about it ever since. Bowling in a Special Olympics practice round, Weidler, 47, rolled a perfect game early in the evening.
“What happened is a couple of weeks ago I shot seven (strikes) in a row for a 247,” he said. “Last week I had a 231 with six in a row. I just decided I wanted to try for a 300.”
If only it were that simple, though. The closest Weidler has come was a 279 two years ago. He said his average is 189 competing in four Pro Bowl West leagues, where he practices around his job there. Weidler, who also works as a janitor at the E. Ross Adair Federal Building & U.S. Courthouse, threw a 219 in his first of two games last Sunday.
“I was with my friends and my girlfriend and I felt pretty good throwing the ball out there,” he said. “I just threw the ball harder each frame and it kept going for strikes. I never let up on the gas. I had nine in a row, and I'm like uh, oh.”
By that time, Weidler's performance was drawing a crowd, though he said that just made him more excited. Some co-workers stuck around after their shifts to watch, and word spread through the lanes that something unique might be happening.
“The crowd was cheering him on every time he struck,” said Cave, who has rolled 97 perfect games. “It meant the world to him.”
He jumped around and received hugs, high fives and congratulations from all his friends. There was an announcement over the public address system from Cave and a T-shirt that says he rolled a 300 at Pro Bowl West. There have been five there this year, said Operations Manager Deborah Wilkerson, who has one perfect game in her career.
Weidler and his fellow bowlers participated in the Special Olympics Allen County meet Oct. 13, which was a qualifier for the Area 3 meet Nov. 9 at Pro Bowl West. Special Olympics is the world's largest sports organization for children and adults with intellectual and physical disabilities.
“I thought I would never do it, but I've got it now,” Weidler said. “I know I can do it again now.”
He may never shut up if that happens.
“He has not stopped talking about the 300 since he got it,” said Nataya Lewis, Weidler's girlfriend of 15 years. “He's been bragging to everybody about it.”
Does that get a little annoying?
“A little bit, but I'm used to him.”