Vote for golf

Birch Ridge Report

Posted: Thursday, September 21, 2006

It’s that time of year again when we’re surrounded by all those wonderful political ads that seem to be everywhere and we must decide who and what will get our vote. Well, for me, that’s easy — golf gets my vote!

I did a little research and found out that of the last 17 presidents, 14 played golf — some pretty good, some not so good and others simply enhanced their scores with all the “mulligans” given them by their playing partners (in Clinton’s case, “Billigans”) or by ignoring the rules of golf altogether (Nixon).

Another interesting fact: Since 1984, losing candidates for the presidency (Mondale, Dukakis, Dole, Gore) were all non-golfers.

John F. Kennedy is considered to be the best of the golfing presidents. He was so good that he was afraid if word got out during his 1960 campaign he was such a good golfer he would lose the election — probably because his predecessor, Dwight D. “Ike” Eisenhower (ranked second after JFK), had spent so much time on the golf course, Democrats often joked that he had invented the “36-hole work week.” (Sounds pretty good to me!)

Coming in third on that executive list was Gerald Ford, who was quoted as saying: “I know I’m getting better because I’m hitting fewer spectators.”

But no matter what your political views are, one thing is for sure — golf and politics go back a long way. And let’s face it, a person’s conduct on the golf course is often the same as their conduct in life.

So how will you conduct yourself this coming Saturday? Will you be among the golfing greats in the Cold Weather Classic? The deadline to sign up is Friday by 6 p.m., with tee-off on Saturday at 11 a.m. (unless there is a frost delay). But I have been assured that sunshine is on the agenda, along with a great time with good friends, a wonderful awards banquet and fun for all in the last tournament of the season.

There was quite a race to the finish for the Wednesday Night Men’s League on Sept. 13th, with the winning team of Roy Bird, Darrel Jelsma, Dave Geddes and Rich Harmon posting a 6-under par. Paul Zimmerman had quite a night as well with a pure birdie, the longest drive, and being closest to the hole on No. 8. On No. 6, Phil Christensen was closest to the hole.

There were 21 seniors still in the running this week and George Collum led the way with the low net of 28. Runner-up and posting the second-place low net of 32 was Steve Hammarstrom, who was also closest to the hole on No. 6. Closest to the hole on No. 8, and making us proud, was Jo Briscoe. Pat McElroy made the longest putt (no hanging “chad” there).

The results are in — and the winning couple in this week’s Tuesday Night four-club format were the Hoaglands (Del and Sally). The Murphys (Dan and Linda) won a three-way tie for second place in a card-off (no re-count required). After playing in the rain once again with four clubs chosen by a random drawing (4-iron, 8-iron, 9-iron and putter), the nine participating couples showed their appreciation to our most favored couple-in-charge, John and Jane Tongen, electing to take them to a much deserved dinner. No question here as we who will get our votes to be in charge again next year. Can we count on you to join the campaign?

Don’t forget to mark your calendars for the annual association meeting on Oct. 26 where your vote will really count as we elect two new board members.

And watch for Tom’s final tip next week as we wrap up our season with our last report of the year.

SHARON’S THOUGHT FOR THE WEEK: “Although golf and politics have a lot in common, there is one big difference: in golf, you can’t improve your lie. And while I’m not suggesting that I will vote for candidates solely on whether they play golf, I must admit that when I go to cast my votes on Oct. 3, golf will be on my mind for sure. Of course, golf is pretty much always on my mind.”

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