Friday, March 23, 2007

Minnesota Golfers Come Out of Hibernation, Squint Into the Sun and See….

...a new golf season.

Each year, Minnesota golfers, looking like speared white whales, waddle onto the first tee, take a few practice swings, and launch our best drives of the year….or maybe not.

If you like dodging snow patches, last year’s goose droppings, singed brown greens and dead grass fairways then Minnesota golf in March will be your cup of tee.

It’s March 23rd and snow is still on the ground, but Minnesota golf courses are starting to open. I know that folks in Florida, Texas or Arizona are reading this with a blank stare, but you have to understand how golfers in Minnesota suffer. We are forced to put our clubs on a shelf from around Thanksgiving until Easter.

While we wait out the winter season, we only get to dream of the warm summer days when we played 36 holes late into the evening or the 5 AM tee time when we were the only ones on the course. Our pain continues when we are forced to watch Tiger, Phil and VJ play wonderful courses in golf paradises like Hawaii, California and Florida, while the only club we get to play with is our shovel.

When we finally get our chance, we expect that we’re going to shoot our best round of the year right off the bat. Remember that 79? Well, we should be just as good today as we were last October. Our skills can’t have atrophied over the last five months because of all the perfect shots we dreamt about. Why hit the driving range or the simulator and work on our skills? What a waste of time. All we need to do is remember what we did in late August.

Minnesotans only have seven months to play the game we love while much of the rest of the golfing world can spend most of the year wearing short sleeves and playing the newest driver hot off the store shelf the day it comes out. Even if we get a new Callaway FT-i Driver for Christmas, we can only look at it, in all its $499 glory, and dream how it is going to feel when we smack that first drive on #1. Is there no wonder why we have one of the highest numbers of golf courses per capita?

We don’t have the luxury to wait two weeks to get on our favorite course in Minnesota. If we do, our season could be over.

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