How to judge a chicken soup golf book by its cover
I happened across an unimportant anecdote in a worthless book called “Chicken Soup For The Soul: Tales of Golf and Sport – The Joy, Frustration and Humor of Golf and Sport.” The book was a gift to me, presented (if such a verb can resist such denigration) by a thoughtless or distracted acquaintance (formerly, friend) who clearly had no idea how preposterous a notion this waste of tree bark was, is and will probably, evermore be. If ever there was a book by whose cover it should be judged, this was it.
The anecdote dealt with a chap who, desperate to play the Chicago Golf Club (C.B. MacDonald and Seth Raynor), announced to the manager that he was on a quest to play the 100 greatest golf courses and that he desperately needed to play this track. The manager, atypically moved to assist, offered the gent a tee time and off he went. After completing his round, the list-keeper was asked how many courses remained to fulfill the impossible quest. “Ninety-nine” was the answer, given with little hesitation and much trepidation.
There is no record of the manager’s response to this revelation. I have narrowed the possible retorts to two. The first, expected, is that the manager gave him the bum’s rush and then proceeded to call (or fax, or email, or skywrite) the fellow’s physical characteristics and description, name and shoe size to every reputable club and course across the land, to derail all future attempts at pulling the same ploy. The second, much less likely (and deserved, might I add?) was that the manager wished him well in his venture and kept tabs on his pursuit and progress …
leading me to wonder, did the grand old game offer up yet another lesson? Might the unexpected answer of “ninety-nine” have been given on 98 other occasions, to measure the true worth of each club and its employees?
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