Recently a friend and golfing buddy of mine was on a first date when the conversation got around to hobbies, likes, dis-likes, etc. When my friend said that he was a golfer, his date literally attacked him like a coyote after a rooster in the barnyard. He later told me that he was flabbergasted at the ferocity of this woman’s comments. He said that he coundn’t imagine a more negative response even if he had told her he was into beating up homeless people.
After stammering through a half-hearted response, he quickly changed the subject. Luckily (IMHO), there was no second date, but, this haranguing tone of voice got me to thinking about how I would respond in such a situation.
While not under those circumstances and certainly not to that degree, I would be willing to bet that most golfers have been subjected to some sort of negative resonse after mentioning that they like to golf. Usually, it has someting to do with the ‘stupidity of chasing a little white ball around all day.’ My usualy response, after attacking their lack of judgement and serious lack of grey matter (only kidding, I think) is to try and explain some of the more positive and readily apparent benefits of golfing. These normally include the competition factor, camaraderie, exercise, etc. And, yes, these are all good (no, excellent) reasons to play golf. But, somehow these reasons seems somewhat lacking. Like we could get the same benefits with any number of other outdoor activities.
So, in no particular order, I have come up with some more slightly esoteric, yet more stimulating reasons we tee it up in almost any kind of weather as long as we have a place to play.
How could anyone not be impressed if we explain to them how playing golf enhances our problem solving capabilities which we then use to foster our careers and make our contributions to society so much more meaningful.
Or, maybe how the highs of the perfectly struck tee shot or the lows of a three putt to lose a $2 Nassua bet makes us better able to deal with the many ups and downs of living in the modern, complex society in which we find ourselves.
Perhaps they may be impressed if we explain that walking the verdant expanses of a golf course puts us in touch with our touchy-feely side which, in the end, makes us better husbands and lovers.
Or how we view a shot into the woods as a chance to commune with nature and all of its meditative powers rather than looking at it as a penalty.
Okay, I’m sure we all get the point by now. So the next time someone disparages golfing, I hope you all pause for a minute before answering and slowly but emphatically mention how your life in every way shape and form has been so enhanced by the mere repitive act of chasing that silly, little ball around the course.