Thursday, October 23, 2008

Step Away From The Golf Club

Spending time in Florida with my parents and the wee ones has been interesting so far. Luckily, we've had no more repeats of blood coming out anyone's ears. But it reminds me of some times growing up. When I was younger, my parents had a condo in Florida. Granted, it was near Tampa and not Orlando, but whatever.

We would spend most of the month of August there every year. Do you remember being a teenager? A moody, brooding teenager? Who was spending an entire month in great proximity to her family with friend far, far away? No? Can you pretend?

My dad reminded me of this lovely experience yesterday. Perfect timing for Momma Kat!

Remember that I'm somewhere in the neighborhood of 12-14 at the time. And it's hot and sticky, and we've been stuck with each other for a very long time already -- since we always drove from Minnesota to Tampa. You wonder why I will now not do road trips.

Admittedly, I'm a bit of a perfectionist. And I might be just a tiny bit competitive. Maybe.

We decided -- we being my parents, my sister and I, and the two friends we had brought down to entertain us -- to go mini-golfing one afternoon. Mini-golf is a great activity. It's easy, everyone can do it, and it has some funky things about it that keep it interesting.

Well, maybe for those people who can get the ball in the hole. Did you know that you're only allowed 8 swings in mini-golf? I do.

Hole one... pretty much everyone got a hole in one or at least under par. I was five strokes before getting the ball in the hole. Bummer.

Hole two... more holes in one. None for me. This was, I think, my first 8 shot of the day.

Hole three... seriously, more holes in one? This game is not that hard. What's the problem? Why am I the only one ending up with the stupid high scores? I've outscored people's entire games on just this hole alone. I start grousing and possibly stomping to the next hole.

Hole four... yeah, more holes in one for others. I start to get what feels like incredibly patronizing advice from my mom and turn my ire on her. And I didn't get the ball into the hole, no matter how hard I tried.

Hole five... I've given up by now and am just randomly swinging my club. The friends make a comment, and I snap back. They're now irritated with me, and I get a warning of some sort from my mom. Whatever.

Hole six... I hit the ball -- not on purpose -- out of the mini-golf hole area. It takes me some time to find it and start over. They make me count that shot but also make me tee off again. I'm very crabby.

Hole seven... Again, I don't get the ball into the hole while EVERYone else gets a hole in one.

This is where my dad intervenes and tells me to quit playing and that I'm ruining it for everyone else. Looking back, he's right that I was ruining it for everyone else, but I was so frustrated. It's a stupid easy game and yet I can't do it no matter how hard I try or don't try. And other people were making fun of me, which isn't exactly easy on a teenager.

Looking back, it's possible I may have been slightly PMS'y. Maybe.

I wasn't allowed to return to the car, nor to wait for them at the entrance of the mini-golf area. I had to follow them around with all their stupid holes-in-one while I couldn't do anything. And when they got to hole eighteen, wanna bet as to whether or not they won a free game? Yeah, I thought you'd guess right on that one.

Luckily, my mom had some sense and convinced them to let us come back another day for the free game. Maybe looking at my face and my attitude (I vaguely remember tears at some point along with a "it's just a game" speech) may have helped to convince them.

On the way home, my dad forbade me from ever playing mini-golf again. I wonder why he came up with this edict. And I never played mini-golf again. Ever. Actually, that's not true. I played once about three years ago. It wasn't horrible. I wasn't great, but I did get a couple holes-in-one. And I won a free game. I never turned in that free game token though.


Diane October 23, 2008 at 9:06 AM  

Oh, I totally related to this story! I had a nightmare mini-golf experience, though I was a bit younger (it had to do with me being right-handed but doing most everything left-handed and not being able to figure out which way I was supposed to golf... everyone teased and laughed and TOTALLY pissed me off). I think I've only played 2 or 3 times since (and that was 35 years ago!!

Elizabeth Byler Younts October 23, 2008 at 11:18 AM  

that's hilarious! the only way i'm any good at anything golf is by playing the Wii! ;-) i have even won tournies on the wii!

Weeksie50 October 23, 2008 at 1:49 PM  

lol- to funny.
Golf is not my game..
but I can play a mean game of goofy golf.

Kellan October 23, 2008 at 4:54 PM  

That's a funny story. I have had those sorts of moments with my kids - forbade them from playing something because they were making it miserable for everyone else ... funny to look back on - not so funny when you are going through it.

Have fun - Kellan

Ashley October 23, 2008 at 7:50 PM  

That's sound traumatic to say the least. But it gave me smile.

Gwen October 23, 2008 at 9:12 PM  

Great story!!! Wii golf is so much easier. Try it some day. :)

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Betty October 24, 2008 at 5:26 AM  

LOL! You really made that story come to life and I felt with you!

Thank you for your visit to my blog yesterday and God bless!

Betty October 24, 2008 at 5:28 AM  

Sorry, after reading your story I completly forgot to answer your questions.
Yes Filadelfia is pronounced exactly the same as your Philadelphia. We pride ourselves in having the same name!
And yes our cactus are really good predictures of rain. We totally believe them! :)

WeaselMomma October 24, 2008 at 6:07 AM  

*Note to self~ Never go golfing(mini or otherwise) with Jack Nicholson or Michelle.*
We all were real jerks when we were teens, just the nature of the beast.

KatBouska October 24, 2008 at 4:52 PM  

I'm pretty sure I would have sabatoged the game for everyone else. That's what kind of 13 year old I was. :) And I'm with you...that game is ridiculously boring and difficult and I ALWAYS lose.

Michelle October 25, 2008 at 12:15 PM  

Diane - Welcome! I'm actually opposite of you where I'm a lefty in a family of righties, so I always had troubles. I feel for you!

Elizabeth - Welcome! Hmmm maybe I should get the Wii then ;) And I could do yoga and all those other exercise things there, too. Ummm maybe not. I don't see that happening now that I think more about it!

Weeksie50 - Aren't goofy golf and mini-golf the same thing? I think that's what my husband calls it. And you prove my point. EVERYone can play that stupid game except me! :)

Kellan - Yeah, I don't know that my parents think it's funny at this point yet. We passed a mini golf course on our way to dinner last night and my dad made a comment about it. I'll never live it down.

Ashley - Welcome! It was traumatic at the time. Fortunately, I think, I've managed to rise above it in the intervening years ;)

Gwen - Ok you're the second person to offer Wii golf as a solution. Is it sad to admit that I've never seen let alone touched one before?

Betty - Welcome! Glad you were entertained and that I could bring it to life for you :) Thanks for the answers -- totally intrigued!

Weaselmomma - Yep, that's a good self-note. And can you give me any hope that the wee one won't be jerks as teens?

Mama's Losin' It - Ahhh, a woman after my own heart. And I think I did some mean things to others who were playing with us like kicking their balls or blocking their shots with my club or something obnoxious, but I've successfully blocked that out of my mind....

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