Paired Up Scenarios

Bob Barker paired up with Happy Gilmore on the golf course

Gathering a concrete golfing foursome week in and week out is no simple task. Often we find ourselves paired up with local strangers who will accompany us through the 18 hole excursion. We will get to know these fellow hackers quite well over the next 4-5 hours. The paired up draw you receive will greatly impact your overall round on any given day. There are a select few pairings that are noteworthy to point out due to either their positive or negative influence on the round.

 

PGA wannabes

These self-proclaimed Jordan Spieth wannabees can be spotted the second they step foot out their pre-owned Honda Accord. Head to toe they’re covered with PGA sanctioned apparel. Their golfing attire easily exceeds $250 while you’re standing there with that TJ Maxx Greg Norman polo you got for $7.99 last week. They don’t even own a pair of golf shorts. Why would they? You don’t see Justin Rose flaunting his calves at TPC Sawgrass. They will immediately think they are better than you or anyone else they see waiting to tee off and at the end of the day, they probably are. When paired with these future Golfsmith sales associates, they will always insist that you tee off first. Don’t even ask what tees they want to play from. They are playing from the tips and will happily let you know that you are welcome to play from wherever you want. Your skill level accompanied with the intimidation and pressure will ultimately result in a hard slice right on that first shot. You’ll then hear a sarcastic “That’s playable”. You’ll mutter some comment on how you haven’t stretched out yet just so you can gain back some self-respect. Be prepared for them to drill their Pro V 1s right down the middle followed by a comment like, “Didn’t really get all of that one”. Their expectations of you will remain in the gutter the entire round and they will thoroughly applaud every single shot you take that doesn’t suck. Thanks, I know my 2 foot bogey putt had a good line.

 

Old timers

One of my favorite pairing scenarios. Old timers don’t give a fuck. You’re going to come away from that round with ample knowledge of either the course, World War II, or both. The best part is the course wisdom they bestow upon you isn’t standard advice like “this hole is a dogleg right” or “that brook is 250 yards out”. It’s weird advice along the lines of “don’t hit it to the left side of the fairway, I once saw a red-tailed hawk in those trees” or “there sometimes is a stream going along the left side of the fairway in late April”. It’s a grand ole time (pun intended). Not to mention, they’re hitting the ball straight as a fucking arrow every single time. If you’re lucky, these old farts will pepper in some life advice every few holes. It's usually along the lines of "never get married" or "medicine is for suckers". They won’t judge your bro-like antics as long as you offer them at least one beer. Don’t be an asshole, they’ve seen some shit.

 

Foreign Asian Couple

I’m not talking about your next door neighbor John Kim who grew up in northern Jersey. I’m talking about the Asian golfers who speak elementary English at best. Either they have immigrated over recently or they’ve opted not to learn our native tongue. Regardless, I always find them to be a spectacle on the links. Introduce yourself but don’t expect any further conversation. They’ll keep to themselves, smoke two packs of cigarettes, and maybe mutter “good shot” every few holes. I do find that the majority of Asian golfers have the most bizarre swings I have ever seen. Their swing plane takes the shape of an upside down letter Z yet their shots hunt down the flag like John Daly hunting down the closest liquor store. You won’t see them operating golf carts, but their pace of play is second to none. They’re trying to finish 18 holes in three hours flat. I’ve once had an Asian round mate flick his cigarette at my back foot for taking three practice swings. I respected his tenacity and subtle effort, but it was 125 yard wedge shot over a bushel of oak trees. Let me concentrate on this one, Dong-Sun. At the end of day, an Asian pairing translates to efficient golf and no-nonsense antics which results in you having enough time to sneak into TGI Fridays to try that new Jack Daniel’s sampler.

 

Father and son

Rarely is the father-son pairing an ideal scenario. I’m not referring to the adult father-son combo. I’m talking about the 8 year old son and his 34 year old father. Right out of the gate, you know the youngster is going to suck. You prep for it and you just pray to the high heavens, that his father will tell him to pick up the damn ball after 10 strokes. You and I both know that’s never the case. Johnny may not give a shit about golf and be on shot number 12, but dad needs him to work on that swing. Dad failed at becoming a PGA golfer, but Johnny has hope! He may be a little raw around the edges, but he’s got Hunter Mahan potential according to pops. Don’t worry, his dad will tell you to bear with him. He realizes Johnny has been hacking away along the tree line during every hole and wants you to know that he is on top of it. I don’t give a shit what Johnny is doing nor what techniques you are trying to pepper into his pea-sized brain, I just want to be able to catch the second half of the Giants game. You try and remind yourself not to curse when you shank a drive, but once you hear the dad tell his son to “stop fucking around” you realize that all is well and everyone hates having kids.

 

Boyfriend and girlfriend

I get it. Guys want to enjoy the evergreen links with your girlfriend. Don’t get me wrong, girls who golf are sexy as hell, but you know what isn’t sexy? Watching a dude engulf his girlfriend in a backwards bear hug in attempt to guide her through a proper swing plane. Maybe bring your chick to the driving range like twice before sending her out on this 6,800 yard course at 10:30 am on a Sunday in July. I’ll be the first one to throw out a couple pity “nice shot” complements after she hits a ground ball 150 yards as long as pace of play isn’t hindered. Pace of play really isn’t the biggest concern with this pairing. Usually the boyfriend doesn’t suck at golf and will make her pick up if things are getting out of hand. The issue I have most with this pairing is the god damn PDA. I’m using golf as a way of unwinding from my tumultuous work week and sad excuse of a love life. There is no benefit to witnessing a couple sucking face on every other hole. It reminds me that there is another female golfer who is taken and that I am a desolate asshole who can only form 6 minute connections with sluts at bars.

 

Smoke-shows (Gift From God)

I had to save the absolute best pairing for last as this is a gift from God himself. Whether it be recent grads or cougars, getting paired with smoke-shows is the pinnacle of golf pairings and is as close to golf heaven as you can get without actually playing a foursome at Augusta National with Paula Creamer, Natalie Gulbis, and Holly Sonders. Single or taken, there is something to be said about playing a round with beautiful looking women who can hold their own on the scorecard. Even if they open up a can of whoop-ass on you, you kind of just respect it. Now with this stage, comes great responsibility. You can’t muck it up out there like you do every so often. It’s imperative that you play a respectable round and display a level of confidence on the links no matter what. You need to assume they are single and focus on planting that seed (not literally you savage) anyway possible. God came down from Heaven to bestow these magnificent creatures on you so act like Eminem and make the most of your one shot and one opportunity by exchanging digits toward the end of the back 9. If you need more time, make a wager going into hole 18 that the loser buys drinks at the 19th hole. Lose the bet on purpose and turn into Mariano Rivera and close. If these females are taken, proceed with best judgment, but also remember that their boyfriends are probably Sergio Garcia fans. Ask yourself, what would vintage Tiger Woods do? (WWVTWD). If all else fails, there is always the driving range.

 

Do you have an awesome or terrible pairing story to share? Send it over, bro!

 

Image via Youtube

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