Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Take me out to the...

by guest contributor: Don Moorhead

Getting close to Opening Day for baseball, at which time you’ll no doubt hear a gazillion (estimated number; actual number may be higher) paeans to the grandness of going to the ballpark, of taking in a game to remind you of spring, and of those long afternoon (or more frequently evening) conversations you have with your son, your daughter, your spouse, your father, or just a friend (usually it’s father-son, they always play that up for the “Field of Dreams” guys who feel guilty that they haven’t called their dad this week so they’ll go to a game). There the two of you sit, having a beer, watching the game, catching up or just telling old stories you’ve both heard before. (Ed Note: should somebody tell him this is a golf blog?) Don’t worry, I’m getting there.

Anyway, for my money, as much as I love the ballpark for that purpose, give me a golf course any day and twice on Sunday (see, I brought it around). Not only are you out in the sun, you’re actually doing something in the sun. Not only are you looking at the spectacular green of the grass, you’re actually, well, walking around on it. The conversation is the same, as are the overpriced hot dogs. You’re still catching up with your dad or your buddy or your son, telling the same ridiculous jokes, reciting the story about how one day when the course was in bad shape they asked Fuzzy Zoeller “How did you find the golf course today?” and he replied “Easy, just turned left at the clubhouse, same as yesterday.” Most baseball players would have to have that joke explained to them, possibly with charts.

On a golf course, you talk about golf and you talk about everything and you talk about nothing. You tell your friend “I have no idea what’s going on with my irons lately, I might as well use them to pry up rocks” and you tell your dad “I have no idea what I’m going to do if I don’t get a job soon.” You confess your sins and you confess your love for hybrid clubs and 60 degree wedges and that girl you’ve been seeing. You bust on your friends who don’t play, and you bust on the ones who play badly (like I should talk). You laugh about that one friend you all have who gets a little too mad when he shanks one and a little too happy when he skulls one that dies on the green in spite of itself. You flirt with the beer girl when you’re in your 20s and 30s, then you stop because she could be your daughter’s age. Then when you’re in your 60s, you say “what the hell” and flirt with her again. Ever flirt with a beer vendor at a ballgame? He’ll break you in half.

Because they go ahead and give you a scorecard, you might as well keep score, and if you’re going to keep score, you might as well have a $.25 skin or a $5 Nassau on the line. Ask the last guy who got caught at the ballpark making it interesting by betting on himself how that works out in baseball, they won’t even let him in their stupid Hall of Fame.

So sure, I’ll come out to the ballpark, and I’ll bring my boy or my dad or my buddy. But I guarantee you that by the third inning, one of us is gonna say “so when are we playing golf?”

Read Don's occasional non-golf thoughts at www.aggressivelethargy.blogspot.com

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