My new exercise program consists primarily of walking, (and sometimes Jumping to Conclusions). I prefer walking the golf course for several reasons:
- aesthetics (Not many parks around here–the golf course is the “parkiest” place,
- convenience–it’s just down the hill,
- the winding, undulating path gives variety to the muscle-workout, and
- I guess I have a secret desire to be beaned with a golf ball.
He whirs up next to me and stops, saying, “You shouldn’t be walking here.”
Obligingly, I play along. “Why not?”
“You could get hit by a golf ball.”
“Interesting you should bring that up,” I say, proud of my forethought in doing a little Googling, just on the off-chance I might have this exact encounter. “There is a zero point 1 percent chance of that happening. Odds are higher that I’ll be struck by lightning. I think I’ll take my chances.” I have a moment of abject fear when i hear thunder in the distance, but just decided that this irony would be too profound to consider, and was instead the slurry of bad comedies. “I think I’ll take my chances,” I add, knowing that the odds of getting struck by lighting while golfing were much higher, but i wasn’t golfing. I was walking. Jaywalking, apparently. (Jae, walking. snort snort).
He rubs his chin and squints into the sun, mumbling, “Well…still…we wouldn’t want to be responsible if it did happen, you know…”
“I’d be happy to sign a waiver,” I say, smiling.
He moves something around inside his mouth and offers, “Well, okay… but keep your eyes peeled.” And he whirs away on the little cart. Peeling eyes. Eye peeling. Colloquialisms from hell.
The next day, we cross paths again and he smiles and greets me like we’re friends. I pause and say, “Aren’t you going to offer me a ride?”
His caterpillar eyebrows squirmed high on his forehead. “I thought you were walking for exercise.”
“Still, it’s only proper to offer. It’s really hot today.”
“Would you like a ride?” he asked agreeably.
“No thanks. I’m trying to get my exercise.” I walked away, smiling, and heard him chuckle behind me. I don’t know why I feel the need to fuck with people so much.
After a midnight run through Walmart, I decided that my earlier walk and the shopping still was not enough to make up for the cheese sticks I indulged in for lunch, so I decided to go one more round on the golf course. It was one in the morning….No golf ball hazards, I told myself. No whirring, Golfing Police with caterpillar eyebrows and a concern for my well-being and the liability of the country club. And perhaps more important for my winter-loving ass, no blazing noonday sunshine.
So, I’m walking around the dark course, realizing that although I had the presence of mind to bring a flashlight, it’s still spooky in the pitch dark outside with all that greenspace. Night time critters, doncha know. Or the errant serial killer. I stopped after getting about 100 yards into it…had one of those moments. Should I go back? Did i think this through properly?
Luckily, any continued distress was alleviated by the fact that I had a pistol in my kangaroo pouch (no, i don’t have a flap of skin on my belly…on second thought, maybe I do..I have lost some weight. Anyway…) I pulled the diminutive .25 out of the pouch and held it, redirected the flashlight and started walking again. What event, I mused, would justify me firing this gun? I had a quick image of a rabid raccoon hugging my legs and gnawing a hole in my kneecap. Not likely, but dramatic enough to entertain me. Then I had an image of a buck deer, trying to impale me with his antlers. Why would he do that? I was in his territory and he mistook me for another buck deer? Ridiculous, even though I do have quite a rack.
The only wildlife I did see was either a raccoon or a possum, and all I could really make out was two glowing eyes as he begrudgingly moved toward the taller grass. I finally made my way around the other side, realizing I could put my pistol back in the pouch, as it was unlikely I’d need to use it, and if I did, it would not be a quick draw.
Feeling like those cheese sticks had magically increased my Body Mass Index to 62%, I headed for the footbridge, vowing to eat only fruit and drink only water tomorrow. Then I saw the headlights. Headlights pointed toward the golf course. Toward ME. I thought, ah, there’s that serial killer, now, my hand moving to the opening of the pouch, locating the handle of the .25. Admittedly, it was the type of firearm that would only piss off any attacker, and distract him long enough for me to escape, but it was better than just a flashlight and a kangaroo pouch. I continued moving toward my Blazer and he got out and said, “Hello!” Maybe it’s the Caterpillar Eyebrows dude. When the beam of a Maglite caught me in the face, I realized who it was. A cop. Now, I had a quick hope for something like this<<<
I could now see the white car, with the stripe on the side and those precious twirling blue lights on the top, thankfully not in use at the moment. I understood that he was checking out who the oddball was walking on the golf course in the pitch dark with a flashlight. “Everything okay?” he asked.
That’s when it occurred to me that having a gun in your kangaroo pouch with an inquisitive cop a few yards away, was not one of my better situations. I knew I could not give him any reason to be suspicious. My creative, novel-writing mind kicked in. So I lied. I told him I had dropped my cell phone earlier and had to come back and look for it.
He immediately accepted that, and I thanked him for asking, and said it was good to know that the Bella Vista Police Department was out and about, keeping everyone safe. Considering the zero crime rate in this little retirement village, that was such an overstatement, it bordered on sarcasm, so I decided to zip it. He wished me a good evening and pulled away to investigate some other menace. Like a buck deer goring a raccoon on another golf course.