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LebowskiFest, Pt. 2!

07.22.2008

Ed. note: Earlier this month we dispatched our own version of Windy City Heat, Johnny Moreno, to Kentucky to check out the 7th Annual LebowskiFest. Bowling, drinking, partying and Lebowski seemed right up our alley. We were all too right. I'm still not sure that Moreno has fully recovered but here's his journal detailing his two days wallowing in all things Lebowski.......Read Part 1 here

The Bowling Party

Day Two:

7:20pm: Maybe it’s the heat. Or the humidity. Maybe it’s the heat and humidity, but I’m downing White Russian after White Russian at The Lebowski Fest Bowling Party, sweat pouring down my face. The way I’m downing ‘em must have caught Walter’s eye. He tells me, “Don’t drink too many of those, man. Towards the end of the night things start percolating, if you know what I mean.”

He’s the second person who’s told me this.


Walter procuring a White Russian.

It’s Day 2 of the 7th Annual LebowskiFest and the Bowling Party at the Executive Lanes is packed with Achievers. 50 lanes, with an additional 16 to be constructed, and the whole place is packed with Dudes, Valkaries, Walters and a few Jesus’ sprinkled here and there. Festivities for the event include costume contests, a highest bowling score, farthest travel awards and a bowl off for the winners.

7:30pm: On the way to the bathroom, a “pederast” Jesus smacks the brim of my hat and says he likes it. I offer to buy him a drink. He says, “out of sight!” I say, “Yep,” and walk away.

With how big the bowling alley is, you can hardly move on the walkway behind the bowling lanes. A dude dressed up as a Valkarie walks by.

7:40pm: An Achiever has saved me a spot on his lane, since finding openings are hard to come by with the amount of people. On my lane are a Dude, a Walter, a pregnant Maude and the Dude’s Landlord.

The Dude’s Landlord lines up with his ball. He’s wearing socks up to his knees. On his approach, he falls right on his ass as he throws the ball to a chorus of laughs but as if the Gods of bowling are looking down on him, he throws a strike to a chorus of cheers. He doesn’t even wait to stand up to pump his fist, he does it right there, on his ass, on the lane.


The Dude's Landord

9:20pm: Over the intercom, the first round of the Big Lebowski Trivia Contest is taking place. I get one right. But as a consolation, I’m totally kicking ass in bowling.


"Not-On-The-Rug Man"

10:45pm: During the costume contests, the Achievers barrel their way towards a makeshift “stage” at the entrance of the bowling alley. There’s a “general” kind of contest, with Achievers dressing from secondary and tertiary characters to costumes built around a line or reference from the flick. My personal favorite, a couple, comes in second for their, “This aggression will not stand,” costume, sat on rolling chairs and never stood up once. I’m floored by the creativity of some of the entrants, that some how they can pull a one liner from the flick, and create a visual around it.

Which is a fancy way of saying the White Russians are the doing their thing.


The obligatory "put in a picture of a chick in a bikini" Joblo pic.


The Pope shitting in the woods


This aggresion will not stand, man.

Finally, the contests for The Dude, Walter, Jesus and Maude begin and the first Maude makes her way on stage. For some reason, I’m not able to spot any difference between them and I’m beginning to think it has to do with my affinity for redheads.

The Jesus costumes make their way to the stage one by one, and aside from Bowling Jesus’ (which my favorite being a female who painted a beard on her face), there are also a few Pederast Jesus’ mixed in that makes me very happy. Or at least the word “pederast” does. Because it means someone’s sleeping on their belly for a while.


The chick Jesus.


Pederast Jesus

The Walters finally make their way on stage and personally, it’s a bit underwhelming. Any and every hefty, tall white dude is dressed the same: camo shorts, a vest, the tinted glasses and fake gun. The tide turns when Homework Walter, dressed in a suit, takes the stage with briefcase and homework in tow.

“That Walter or Seth Rogan,” I say to no one in particular.

Next to me, The Dude says, “Seriously.”

Finally, The Dudes are put on display for all to see. By now, it’s pretty useless wearing a hat. Or clothes for that matter, my body is drenched in sweat, despite the biggest fan I’ve ever seen. With everyone crammed near the stage like a pederast gathering at a Hannah Montana show, everyone’s body temperature mixed with the lack of ventilation has me on the verge of a breakdown.


A pederast and an admirer.

It’s announced there are over twenty Dudes in competition.

The announcer is moving The Dudes out in a fast rotation.

One of them trips on the way up, but nary a drop of White Russian is spilled. The crowd cheers.


The Dude trippin'. As in stumbling.

By audience response, it’s not even a question of who’s winning Best Dude. The beard, the hair, the slippers and sweater all set off by the sunglasses, the beeper on the t-shrit and the old school phone carried on his shoulder.


The Winner of Best Dude and Saddam.

“Phone’s ringing, Dude!” The crowd shouts over and over.

The announcer says they’ll tally up the votes and let everyone know the results in a few minutes.

I step outside for fresh air, wishing I still smoked, satisfied that I didn’t lose it in there.

*****-ish: I’m surprised they still have White Russians.

With the amount of White Russians and Miller High Life I’ve been drinking, I’m bowling much better than I have been. And that’s really no surprise. On my lane, the oil has broken down so I’m really able to loft the ball out there and have it come back and hit the pocket flush.

I go to submit my score of 219 to the Highest Bowler contest.

“You’re about a half hour late,” the guy says.

“Oh. Where would I place a half hour earlier?”

“Second.”

The winners for costume contest are announced and now it’s up to a bowl off for the oversized check that’s been hanging behind the counter. One ball, the most pins gets the check and the winner is…….Maude.

While I’m bowling I hear the other awards for farthest and hardest travel being given out. Somebody came from Belgium. And if I’m hearing it right, somebody had their leg amputated on the way here.


A crowd shot on the way out.

*****-ish: It’s late. I’m thinking about one or so since the bowling alley kicked everybody out. In the parking lot I’m talking with a few Achievers, getting a contact high. I’m not sure the time because one of the guys tells me there’s a one hour time difference between Louisville, Kentucky and Chicago. Then the other guy tells me there isn’t. I walk away mid-argument and let them fight it out because it doesn’t even matter.

At the after party, conveniently located in my hotel bar, everyone from the bowling alley has made their way over to this tiny bar that looks exactly like the Regal Beagle from Three’s Company. The DJ is playing something awful and I’m on my…..whatever number White Russian. I can’t take the scene so I order another White Russian to go and double fisting, I stumble back to my room, exhausted.

The Departure

8:46am: In the morning I’m working at unsticking my tongue from the roof of my mouth, looking at the notebook next to me, the writing completely ineligible.

After packing, I exit the room and walk down the hallway, smelling the dead, stale smell of weed hanging in the air.

In my Jeep, somewhere around Indianapolis, I reflect: the bands, the bowling, the screening, the White Russians and how many I must’ve drunk. It’s then that I start to feel my stomach turning, percolating.

Fucking Walter was right.

The LebowskiFest Videos


A clip of PLEASEEASAUR


A clip of comedian Brian Posehn telling someone to "Shut the fuck up, Donny."


A montage of costumes from the LebowskiFest 2008 Bowling Party.

Source: JoBlo.com

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