Born in 1966, perfect birth year for the golden age of pinball...at 9 years old, I visited a great uncle & aunt in Green Bay who had a woodrail pin and a 78 RPM juke in their basement...I was hooked. In 1978, we picked up a Gottlieb Hearts & Spades from my uncle's next door neighbor for $75.00. It went into my bedroom and I'm sure I drove my parents crazy with the chimes of EM pin.
A couple of years later, my buds & I were cruzin' town on our bikes and I discovered a 1965 VW Beetle convertible stashed under a tree in a backyard...another $75.00 and it was MINE...Hearts & Spades got cut loose for 150 bucks, to finance repair of my new passion prior to getting my drivers license.
But the pinball 'fever' never diminished...we would hit bar-to-bar, just walking in, playing whatever game they had, then bike on to the next. Embryon, Gorgar, Future Spa...every bar had one. The campgrounds outside of town had a few EM machines that we'd play, but a small locale known as the 'Malt Shop', in town, had a line up of 8 pins opposite 8 vids, with a pool table at the rear, and pot sales further rear...
Here, I discovered Bally's XENON, pumping many quarters into her, Skateball, Harlem Globetrotters, KISS, Mata Hari, etc. Now, finally, I own XENON...she is the crown jewel of my arcade collection.