If I were a golf course, I’d want to be George Wright, a course so deeply wedged into Hyde Park’s confusing maze of streets that people anywhere outside a two-mile radius would have no clue how to find me. Because I’m the kind of golf course that needs people to care about me before I allow them to go chopping off chunks of my grassy skin with their clubs. You can’t just stumble upon me and start poking me full of tee holes. I’m old fashioned that way.
Despite the fact that I live within a two-mile radius of George Wright, I don’t get there very often. I’m usually busy during daylight hours making great strides in extending the lives of humans and solving the world’s intractable problems, and it’s hard to golf at night. But with steady rain in the forecast, I knew the ruffians who normally prowl the links with their clubs would fear the moisture and go into hiding, and maybe I should take advantage. My Pop-Warner football coaches used to say, “What are ya, made of sugar? You melt in the rain?” No. But most people would prefer to be dry.
Still, there’s nothing like rain to keep your golf course free of people. Not that I don’t like people. But, to tell you the truth, I’d much rather they stay off of my golf course.
This makes it sound like I have a golf course. Au Contrare. Despite my excellent breeding, I don’t “have” a golf course of my own, except on those occasions when it’s raining hard enough that no one else is on the local public course, which makes it look like “my” course.
On this recent rainy visit to George Wright, I felt like some kind of intergalactic traveler, landing on an out-of-the-way golf planet that was largely undiscovered. When I tell you that I saw no other golfers, I don’t mean that I saw just a golfer here or there: I mean I saw 4 people total, and all of them were groundskeepers. This allowed me to play as many balls as I liked on any given hole, which is a treat when you tend to fly as many balls into the leafy woods as I do. I feel it’s always best to ignore those errant balls and drop another. And then another. And then a fourth.
Those are the ground rules on my golf planet, and no special visa is required to be admitted. All you need to do is figure out how to get here.
If you ever pitch to me and I discover that you’re out of shape and have a bad knee, I’m going to lay a bunt down the third base line that will expose to millions of people watching television that you’re totally unable to throw me out.
I’m speaking metaphorically, of course, as you and I rarely find ourselves in head-to-head matchups any longer, and anyway, you can’t get the ball over the plate. Nor can I bunt. But even knowing this, you get all bent out of shape each time I metaphorically square up.
If you really hate it that much why don’t you just throw at me?
I doubt it will be a problem to get out of the way of your 45 mile-an-hour “fast” ball. And anyway, I’ll be wearing military helmet and bullet-proof face shield. And I’ll deploy a missile defense system to shoot down your softballs, just in case.
One or two columnists might write a few inches calling us both jerks, but many people (mostly lawyers) will defend me vociferously, saying that I’m just doing my job by laying down that proverbial bunt. And that, let’s face it, you’re not exactly spritely any longer.
Heading to the proverbial batting cages to work on my metaphorical squaring up, and all that.
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