Walked past this exhibit at SFO a while back and was reminded a) how awesome pinball used to be and b) that whoever curates these shows has the best job ever. Vintage robots, Bauerware pottery, South Seas artifacts, it’s incredible. In fact, the SFO Museum (as it’s technically known) was the first cultural institution of it’s kind created in an international airport (c. 1980). Pinball, one might argue, is a cultural institution of its own, dating back well over 100 years and counting. While the asthetics may have gotten a little off-kilter, there’s no doubting the satisfaction a person gets from whacking a ball and watching it light shit up. Mmmm, baseball anyone?
Who’s a Baffle Baller? While the SFO exhibit came down a long time ago, you can still get your vintage pinball fix at Lucky Juju (aka the Pacific Pinball Museum) over in Alameda. $15 buys you unlimited free games on nearly 100 different machines. My fingers ache just thinking about it.