Lest you doubt our creativity as a species, take a moment of ponder the wide variety of activities we have invented involving nothing more than a stick and a ball. My latest undertaking into these “games” was one of the odder experience of my adult life: golf. Simply put, I hit a small white object around an impossibly large lawn with the goal of getting said ball into tiny little holes in the ground. But that’s not all – you have to get them in the hole in the right order. And to expedite the whacking of the ball, you drive around the lawn in a funny little underpowered open-air car, even though the distances between the holes in the ground aren’t really that far. Weird, just weird.
Given my attitude, it’s not surprising that a few words of wisdom from George Carlin came to mind, to the effect of “so the goal is to hit the ball as few times as possible, right? So when you find the ball, pick it up and put it in your pocket. You’re a winner.” I think George was on to something because the ‘other’ way of playing, where you continue hitting the ball, wasn’t really working out for me.
The scene of this melee was just minutes from my house and their website offers the golf-speak, “the par-71 golf course at Paradise Valley Country Club in Casper, Wyoming measures over 6700 yards from the back tees.” I had taken exactly two golf lessons in preparation for the 18-holes, which was woefully insufficient. I probably only connected with the ball on about 60% of my swings. The good news was that when I did connect, I hit the ball fairly straight and pretty far. The other good news is I was playing with my husband, a much more accomplished golfer, and we played “best ball”, meaning whichever ball went the furthest towards the little hole we were aiming towards. This really helped keep the game moving.
All in all, I can’t say I discovered a new passion, but I’ll probably play again. I will probably try to spend some more time on the driving range in the meanwhile and maybe play a 9-hole next time. Then again, maybe I’ll stick to my bikes and sliding down snow on two sticks.