March 3, 2019

Old Tom Morris

I got a friend who lived on the 17th green of a fancy ‘Championship’ golf course (they all are) and that sounded dangerous to me until he told me that he had a house NEXT to the 17th green...a 3/2 with an enclosed back porch and a little screen porch off the main bedroom upstairs that overlooked the green...which didn’t sound dangerous until he told me about golf balls landing in his backyard and hitting the side of his house sometimes WHACK!—and twice breaking a back porch window—KRRRIIAASSSSH!...he wasn’t home either time and nobody left a forwarding address so they could pay for the damage—of course...he even found a golf ball once in his upstairs screened porch somehow...guess somebody overclubbed...my friend and I played there a few times...as the old joke goes...I had a great short game...off the tee...BWAAAHAHAHAHA...I saw a story about the course the other day on the internet...it mentioned that the place just closed down...what would Old Tom Morris think?...it was located in one of those formerly fancy mancy pansy developments that they built around the course years ago...that was in the days when a house on a golf course indicated you had made it...older people would buy houses in this golf community, and get little carts to ride around in, and they thought they had it made and would live the good life...people would pay for the prestige of being a member and be happy to get overcharged in the clubhouse bar and grill—the 19th hole as it’s called by those in the know...it was done in purples and mauve’s and had all the requisite golf pictures and beer signs...and they’d flirt with the cute cart girls with the long hair and short shorts that drove around the course offering cold beer to thirsty golfers under the tall pines and cypress...I don’t play golf anymore but I used to and there I was...winning the U.S. Open and the Masters--after being 2 behind with 3 holes to play...or on the rare cold and blustery days, imagining I was playing the British Open at St. Andrews or Turnberry and putting on a dramatic comeback to win in breathtaking fashion... snatching victory away from Jack Nicklaus—but those days were long ago my friend and in an imagination far far removed from reality...the course laden with old men who would tell you how great they were before they hurt their back…blah blah blah...lies of course...it’s a familiar pattern...they build a golf course in a housing development to get people to buy houses...the original people move into assisted living places, or nursing homes, or die off; the demographics of the neighborhood change, the economy goes south, or sometimes the developers just lose interest in favor of their next get rich quick project...when that happens, the housing values drop...when that happens, they get people who move in...people who don’t know a mashie from a niblick and don’t care...the course shuts down and the manicured fairways and greens become weed pastures and ‘green spaces’...Young Tom Morris must be turning over in his grave...some people probably didn’t mind, it beat golf balls hitting the side or the roof of their house...or golfers relieving themselves behind their backyard trees from all the beer they’ve drank while playing.