Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Why I Love Golf

Okay, I golf. Some people think it’s really snobbish, something wealthy, white men do. I can’t argue. Tennis has a bad image, too, but there are more women out there swinging rackets so it’s not quite so bad. You know, the country club always has a tennis court for the ladies.

Seeing that women are not allowed any good tee times, I guess they give up and play tennis. And in such lovely skirts, too.

Even so, I love to play golf. I find the rhythm required, the repetition of the strokes, a Zen practice. I can’t sit still in a chair to meditate for the life of me but I can walk up to a golf ball and go through the exact same routine again and again.

I love walking down the long stretches of lawn. Okay, it’s not politically correct to like overly processed grass that probably has enough chemicals dumped on it yearly to repeat Bhopal. I know. I can’t help but love the manicured greens. And when did I ever get to wear saddle shoes? Now mine have spikes. Better than anything some cheerleader wore.

I love playing golf because it’s a game I am pretty good at. Okay, I’m more than good. I stand at the first tee, usually assigned with three randomly selected male co-players who are shitting their pants they have been stuck with a GIRL.

C’mon on guys, admit it. You’re all afraid the single woman teeing off with you is some chick who has to hit the ball ten times before getting to the 100-yard mark.

Not me.

I love watching their faces when I hit the ball and out drive them.

Game on, big boys.

I’m probably going to par the hole from my girly-girl ladies tee. In fact, I’ll probably beat you.

It is a game fraught with problems. All of them caused by old, white guys who can’t see that letting some women in the game doesn’t mean they give up the option to swear on the course. I’ve been known to let loose a blue streak after missing a birdie putt myself. And it will give me more opportunities in the business world to be invited along when the boss plays.

Not that my boss plays. I asked her once if she wanted me to teach her how to play- we do work in the investment business and no other business in the world conjures up images of golf and martinis the way the investment business does.

No luck on the early Friday tee times I was hoping for. I did get to teach her how to make a lemon drop martini- small consolation.

But letting women on the course isn’t going to change the world they live in dramatically. Sure, they may turn around and have a woman for a boss someday but they all had mothers. I’m pretty sure they know how to take orders from women. And it’s a game. Not the boardroom.

So I play golf because I love the game. I love the graceful ease of it. I love the one great hit you get every time you go out that stays in your mind making you think, yeah, I could tee up with Tiger someday.

When he’s in a wheelchair.

So, guys, I may be a bleached-blonde woman hitting from the ladies tee?

But I can swing a club.


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