September 04, 2014 - 7:33 AM
Recently someone who doesn’t know me very well suggested we should play golf together. Apparently it’s obligatory when you live in an area of the country infested with golf courses. I must have had a few glasses of wine, because I agreed, despite never having played before. Once reminded of my obligation I thought I had better prepare so as not to embarrass myself.
I started by watching television one Saturday afternoon. To my astonishment I discovered there is actually a “Golf Channel." This is like dedicating an entire channel to watching bread rise. I managed to stay awake for about half an hour, during which time absolutely nothing happened. Commentators who sounded like they too were struggling to retain consciousness mumbled meaningless statistics while some badly dressed men wandered about hitting balls with a stick. That was it. There was an actual audience but they weren’t moving at all so they may have been stuffed. It was so utterly dull it could be prescribed as a cure for insomnia. But it did give me some clues as to how to excel at the stupid game.
First, one must dress like an inmate of an insane asylum. No plaid is too much plaid. I raided Value Village and found a pair of trousers last worn by a children’s entertainer in the early 1970s. They ended just below my knees, so they were perfect. A lime-green shirt, tartan socks and a floppy cap completed the proper look.
Next I consulted the font of all wisdom in order to learn the language, which is completely different from our own. For example: "I hit a driver, nailed a wood then airmailed the green with my wedge” would normally translate to: “I punched my chauffeur, achieved an erection and posted some money overseas with my underpants stuck in my bottom.” In Golf it means: “I used some sticks to make a ball fly over some grass” which pretty much sums up the entire game.
Last Sunday I headed confidently for the course. I cannot begin to describe what a terrible waste of an afternoon it was. It’s hard to believe the country that brought us single malt was also responsible for this.
The sticks I rented were totally useless for hitting the ball more than a few feet at a time, unlike my acquaintance’s sticks which were obviously much better suited for the purpose. It went on for hours. And it wasn’t even a nice walk – in fact it wasn’t a walk at all, since we drove around in one of those ridiculous little carts. There was no real scenery to enjoy because the entire landscape had been artificially moulded and manicured. It was like driving very slowly across somebody’s huge and really boring lawn.
At the end of it there was a large and well-stocked bar. Apparently all courses have them. Why was I not told this before? If I am ever again invited to play golf, I shall start there. And stay there.
— The Grumpy Old Git is the duff
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