Warning: Golf Can Be Addictive and Destructive

golfBy Jim Callicott

I have a friend named Larry who has a house in Nashville but his home is on the golf course, any golf course. He habitually can be found on the green seven days a week, club in hand. Neither rain, nor sleet, nor snow nor darkness of night will keep him from his appointed rounds (pun intended).

Larry is a single guy (i.e. refer to the above paragraph). He confessed that his ideal date would be a lady who will caddy for him, refrain from speaking about her personal problems and serves wine after the 18th hole. He hasn’t had a date since his second wife left.

Accentuating the serious addiction of his problem, I called Larry’s office one cold winter morning and was informed he was on the golf course.

“But, it’s snowing and the temperature is at 28 degrees,” I said.

“It’s okay,” his secretary replied. “He has a coat on and is using orange golf balls.”

Larry claims to golf for three reasons. The first is health. He walks the course and is in pretty good shape for the shape he’s in. The second reason is he meets some pretty fabulous people, or as he likes to say, some pretty fabulous people get to meet him. The final reason is, like most business executives, he conducts a lot of business on the golf course. He claims more business deals are finalized on a golf course than in any office. I would offer a fourth reason: the clubhouse bar and bikinis in the swimming pool.

One of his best games occurred, he claims, last winter with ice and snow covering the ground. He was the only person playing the course (which says something about his devotion to the game or his mental state of mind), so there are no earthly witnesses to verify the facts. But that’s fine; no golfer has ever been known to enhance the telling of his game.

He was on a par 4 hole and made an eagle (two strokes under par for non-golfers). That’s hard enough to do during nice, warm, spring weather. But in ice and snow, one wonders. His story is that he hit the ball with his driver (that’s a club, not the person steering the cart) and when the ball hit ice, it just kept rolling, stopping about two feet from the cup. He parted the snow on the ground in front of the cup and putted, landing the ball in the cup for the eagle.

On the next hole his tee shot was not good and the ball was heading straight for the lake. In good weather, this means you lose the ball, drop another one, lose a stroke and continue play.

Today, however, the lake was frozen and the ball bounced about three times on the ice, crossing the lake securely, hit another patch of ice and rolled on to the green, headed straight to the cup for a hole in one. Larry immediately went to the clubhouse and bought drinks for everybody, which consisted of himself and the bartender.

There was another friend who took up golf about the same time he moved in with his girlfriend. He became addicted (to golf, not the girlfriend). His job required travelling, leaving town on Monday morning and returning Friday evening. Weekends would find him and his buddies on the golf course. Saturday he played 18 holes and on Sunday it was 36 holes. This didn’t leave much time for the girlfriend.

About two months of this gaiety passed before he returned home one Sunday evening and found his suitcases sitting in the driveway. A note attached instructed him to load the suitcases in his car, keep the golf clubs and find a new place to live. His second choice was to sell the clubs, bring the suitcases back in and stimulate the relationship.

He says, even to this day, there are times he thinks of her.

 

 

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