OPINION

Green: Finding a new 'road' to the driving range

RENAE GREEN
Renae Green column

(Editor's Note: Like so many others across the state, Renae has been caught in the rolling blackouts. While she tries to stay warm, we're sharing this column of hers, which has previously appeared in our pages).

My son has recently taken up golf. I’m quite proud of his interest in a sport that has potential to be a lifelong pastime. It’s a gentleman’s sport and requires both physical and mental prowess, neither of which he inherited from yours truly.

The only golf I’ve ever played is Putt-Putt. I usually nail the first couple of holes, after which I become distracted by all the pretty lights and whirling windmills, and after that it’s a bust. I might as well turn in my clubs and head inside to the pinball machines.

But for my son’s sake, I wanted to make a good impression on the golf club people. You know the ones—they’re really tan and have tone, muscular arms and legs. They wear designer golf shirts and visors, and they look remarkable and extraordinary before they ever step onto the greens. These are the people I wanted to impress.

I had dropped off my son for a practice session. I ran a few errands in town, got a Starbucks hit, and now it was time to pick him up. I went to the clubhouse, but Foster wasn’t there.

I looked on the putting green. No sign of him.

I walked to the first couple of holes. Nope.

That’s when I went back inside the clubhouse and spoke to the impressive young woman at the counter. “I’m looking for my son,” I said. “Tall, blonde, good-looking. He’s on the high school golf team.”

“Have you tried the driving range?” she asked. “I saw some teenagers heading that way.”

Now, you have to understand, I know nothing about golf. I thought the entire course was a driving range. But I didn’t tell her that. Instead I said, “Uh, we’re kind of new here. Can you tell me how to get to the driving range?”

“Sure,” she said, and proceeded to give me directions I didn’t understand. But she did mention the word “drive” several times, so you can perhaps forgive what happened next.

I thanked her, went to the parking lot, got in my car, and tried to drive to the location she told me about. I left the parking lot, turned onto a residential street, turned again, and seeing no place else to go, I turned down a small path that I thought would surely lead me to the driving range.

It didn’t.

Not only that, but mine was the only automobile on the little path. Golf carts? Yeah. There were plenty of those. Toyota Camrys? Not so much.

By the time I figured out I was definitely not where I was supposed to be, it was too late. The path was too narrow, my driving skills too sketchy for me to back up. So I kept going. And going and going and going down the marked path, while all the physically and mentally impressive people just gazed in disbelief.

I responded the only way I knew how. I smiled and waved, because that’s what one should do when people stare at you. I think.

I spotted the clubhouse in the distance and knew there was a parking lot attached to it, so I headed that way, winding and curving past tee-boxes and greens and holes with little flags and lots of staring, tanned people. Finally, I made it back to the parking lot.

I parked as far away from the rest of the vehicles as I could. I felt like even the cars were judging me. And then I picked up my cell phone and called my husband.

“You did WHAT?” he said.

“Never mind that. I can’t find Man Cub. They said he’s at the driving range.”

After he stopped laughing (which took entirely too long, in my opinion) he stayed on the phone with me and guided me to the driving range where I found my son, whacking away at golf balls and fitting in quite well with the impressives.

Poor kid. He had nothing to do with the mother he was issued at birth.

I didn’t tell him what happened. I’m sure he’ll find out, one of these days.

In the meantime, I think I’ll have his dad drop him off and pick him up from the golf course for a while. And I’m pretty sure I’m in the market for a wig, some Jackie O’ sunglasses, and a new car.

Renae Brumbaugh Green is a bestselling author and award-winning humor columnist. She lives in Stephenville with her handsome, country-boy husband, nearly perfect children, and far-too-many animals. Connect with Renae at www.RenaeBrumbaugh.com