My wife said to me, "Walter, it is about time you learned to play golf,
you know." Golf - that's the game where you chase a ball all over the
country when you are too old to chase women.
So I went to see Jones and ask him if he would teach me how to play. He
said, "Sure - you've got balls, haven't you?" I said, "Yes, but
sometimes on cold mornings they are kinda hard to find." "Bring them to
the club house tomorrow," he said, "and we will tee off." "What's tee
off?" I asked. "It's a golf term, we have to tee off in front of the
club house." he explained. "Not for me," I said, "you can tee off there
if you want to, but I'll tee off behind a barn somewhere." "No, no, a
tee is a little thing about the size of your little finger." he said.
"Yeah, I've got one of those." "Well," he said, "you stick it in the
ground." "What!" I exclaimed. "Yes," he said, "you stick it in the
ground and put your ball on top of it." I asked "Do you play golf
sitting down? I always thought you stood up and walked around." "You
do," he said, "you're standing up when you put your ball on the tee."
Well, folks, I thought that was stretching things a little too far and I
He said, "You've got a bag, haven't you?" "Sure." I said. He said "Your
balls are in the bag, aren't they?" - "Of course." I told him. "Well,
can't you open the bag and take one of your balls out?" he said. I said
"I suppose I could, but damned if I was going to." He asked if I didn't
have a zipper on my bag, but I told him "No, I'm the old fashioned type."
Then he asked me if I knew how to hold my club. Well, after twentyeight
years I should have some sort of idea, and I told him so. He said "You
take your club in both hands," - folks, I knew then he didn't know what
he was talking about - "and swing it over your shoulder." "No, no,
that's not me, that's my brother you're thinking about." He asked me,
"How do you hold your club?" and - before I thought I said in two
fingers and none of your damned business. He said "That isn't right" and
got behind me and put both arms around me and told me to bend over and
he'd show me how. He couldn't catch me that though - I didn't put four
years in the Navy for nothing.
He said "You hit your ball and it will soar and soar." I said "I could
well imagine." Then he said "And you are on the green." "What's the
green?" I asked. "That's where the hole is." he said. "Sure you are hot
color blind?" I asked. "No! Then you take your putter." "What's a
putter?" I asked. "That's the smallest club made." "That's what I've
got, it's a putter." "And with it" he said "you put your ball in the
hole." I corrected "You mean the putter?" "No" he said, "the ball, the
hole isn't big enough for the ball and the putter both." Well, I've seen
holes big enough for a horse and wagon. Then he said "After you made the
first hole, you go to the next 17."
He wasn't talking to me! After two holes, I'm about shot to hell. "You
mean, you can't make 18 holes in one day? Hell no, it takes me 18 days
to make one hole! Besides, how do I know when I'm in the 18th hole?"
"The flag will be up" he said. JUST MY LUCK.