|Forget the fairways - take your golf date straight to clubhouse for happy hour. (Courtesy)|
Chuck and Barbara got married the other day.
What's the big deal? The big deal is how they met. They met through a golf dating service. There are a lot of these nowadays.
Now, I have no problem with dating services. I tried one myself one time, and got lucky - she insisted on cleaning my kitchen before we went out. We never slept together, but I didn't have to do dishes that month. True story.
But meeting for the first time on a golf course strikes me as a bad idea.
According to Golfmates.com, the people who brought Chuck and Barbara together, "Golf is the perfect first date. Why? It's a sport men and women can enjoy playing together. The sport provides an instantaneous ice-breaker - a common interest two people can discuss. Golf is a relaxing, safe, outdoor activity that provides ample opportunity for socializing between shots. What is more, after nine or 18 holes, a round of golf comes to an end; if two people are not compatible the end of the round is the end of the date."
What a crock, except for the last part.
Let me tell you why blind golf dates are a bad idea. Or rather, let novelist Paul Gallico tell you:
"If there is any larceny in a man, golf will bring it out," Gallico wrote.
Golf is a liar's paradise. I can't think of a round I ever played without at least one lie, either to myself or to a playing partner.
Scientists studying lying, or humans' ability to deceive themselves or others, should flock to golf courses across America, snatching up preferred tee times. They'd end up either lying to each other about their scores or committing suicide due to their profound loss of faith in mankind.
If you have even a little bit of a liar in you, it will come out on the golf course. Hardly a healthy way to start a life partnership.
Golf is most definitely not a sport men and women can enjoy playing together. Men are in it for one purpose only - to out-drive their playing partners. Women are in it for the purpose of annoying men. Golf is a sanctioned way for women to annoy men that they can't find anywhere else in society.
"The sport provides an instantaneous ice-breaker - a common interest two people can discuss."
More drivel. When's the last time you had a serious discussion about golf with a woman? Women can't discuss any sport. They're born with a hate-sports gene. Want to drive a woman away when you've finally, at long last, got her inside your lair? Turn on SportsCenter. She'll leave skid marks.
"Golf is a relaxing, safe, outdoor activity that provides ample opportunity for socializing between shots."
Can we dispense once and for all with this notion that golf as "relaxing"? Golf is about as relaxing as a house-to-house search in a Sunni neighborhood in Baghdad. If you're relaxed during a round, you've either given up or you're drunk.
Golf is tense enough. Now you have a strange woman tagging along, and you have to worry about something you might say that would cause her to resolve never to sleep with you - as if you ever had a chance - and still try to shoot a decent round? I'd rather play with a pit viper.
And what is this "ample opportunity for socializing between shots"? She's on the pink tees, 100 yards up the fairway. What are you going to do, scream at her? Use a bullhorn? ("Hey! Where are you from? Can you hear me?")
The only time for socializing is after the round, back at the bar, where you can employ the only method ever proven to be socially successful for men with women - the happy-hour method.
"What is more, after nine or 18 holes, a round of golf comes to an end; if two people are not compatible the end of the round is the end of the date."
Finally, they get to the truth. The most you can hope for is that she won't blab to her friends about what a jerk you are and spoil what few chances you have.
Of course, the worst-case scenario is that she will report you either to the head pro, the USGA or law-enforcement officials - or to all three - and have you banned from the course, your handicap questioned and your record sporting a sexual-misdemeanor charge.
No golf dates for me, even if I was single. I'd follow Groucho Marx's advice on this one: "Women should be obscene and not heard."
Now, if there were a golf dating service with that philosophy, I might reconsider.
March 19, 2007
Veteran golf writer Tim McDonald keeps one eye on the PGA Tour and another watching golf vacation hotspots and letting travelers in on the best place to vacation.
I've been slumming it out on cheap public courses my entire life. At one point, aren't I entitled as a lifelong golfer to finally enjoy the fruits of my suffering on a well conditioned, thoughtfully designed private course from one of the game's premier architects?
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