Wednesday, February 24

Golf Pet Peeve: The Drunken Wedding Party

Robert Bruce of Game Under Repair has something he needs to get off his chest. Maybe you can relate.

By Robert Bruce
Special to ARMCHAIR GOLF


NOTHING IRKS ME MORE than a drunk person on a golf course. The only thing worse is 15 drunk 20-something hackers on a golf course the day before a wedding. The Friday golf outing before a wedding has become, in some circles, as much a part of the wedding weekend as the rehearsal dinner and reception.

It’s a great idea: The groom takes all of his groomsmen, plus a few other friends and family members, out for an 18-hole round on the day before the wedding. The point, of course, is to have a little fun and get his mind off the life-changing event less than 24 hours away.

But here’s the problem. Within this group of a dozen or so testosterone-filled males, you might have one or two guys who actually know a minimal amount of golf etiquette. The rest of this crew is like a bunch of Gomer Pyles in a five-star restaurant—totally out of their element. Usually, this golf outing takes place on a fairly nice, pricey golf course. The result? Fifteen drunk guys on a $100-dollar-a-round track.

Case in point: A few weeks ago, my father-in-law was playing on a course in Florida. It was just a nice, casual round with a relative. On the first tee, the cart girl was practically attacked by several guys looking to load up on Jack and Jim. Within a few holes, the guys were driving over tee boxes, spinning out in fairways, and ramming carts into trees. Redneck alert! By the 12th hole, the group was thrown off the course—and hopefully banned from playing there in the future.

If you’re on a goat track public course, then go for it. Party away. But if you’re on an extremely nice course—and, in this case, next to an extremely nice hotel—then have some common decency. As I’ve said, very few things piss me off more than drunk people on the golf course. I encountered plenty of these fellows when I worked as a cart guy during college. I’m not a fan.

I’ll admit, my other golf pet peeves just annoy me. This one makes me downright angry. A round of golf takes an investment of time and money. Nothing can make you feel like you wasted that time and money like a bunch of wedding-party drunks. At least save the shenanigans for Saturday night.

Robert Bruce is a full-time writer and part-time golf blogger in Nashville, Tennessee. Visit his golf blog at www.gameunderrepair.com.

(Image: gfpeck/Flickr)

8 comments :

courtgolf said...

Don't you wish you weren't just preaching to the choir and these bozo's would actually change their ways ? The worst thing about the damage that they do is that the course has to repair the grounds, and if a cart gets damaged, they usually have to pay for that, too.

Excellent article.

bkuehn1952 said...

I have never run across a group as out of control as described in the article. It is not that I play places that are more sophisticated; I am a muni and public course player of over 50 years. My gut tells me that this type of display is relatively rare.

On the other hand, my foursome almost got stuck behind a "wedding party" outing last Summer. Fortunately they graciously allowed us to jump ahead. We knew we were in trouble when we saw a bunch of them wearing little fedoras, sporting cigars and dressed like Justin Timberlake. They must have been aware that their pace was going to be snail-like and waved us on through at the first tee.

I rarely play on the 4th of July or Labor Day. Maybe that is the reason I have never had the misfortune to witness a similar situation as described by the writer. I also rarely play courses with $100 greens fees.

Greg D'Andrea said...

Hey Robert - great post! There's a fine line when it comes to drinking and golfing. Rather coincidentally, I posted something extremely similar on my blog this morning. Take the poll there when you get a chance!

WannaBeBen said...

Why is OK to act like an asshole on a public course?

Heather said...

Hubbie HATES this too. At our course the biggest problem with wedding party golf is pace of play. Usually they are backed by some "big spending" members so the pros are shy about telling them to big up the pace. This can back up the entire course.

Robert Bruce said...

WannaBeBen, I think it just has to do with expectations. The more you pay to play golf, the more you expect from the course and the round. I played on a $10 a round course growing up, and I expected idiots like this. It just comes with the territory. Some people are going to act like idiots no matter what, but as long as they stay away from the decent courses, I'm okay with that. Probably to much to ask, I guess.

Bob Firestone - golfUSAtv.com said...

I am not against having a couple of drinks on the course especially if you just 3 putted for an 8.
But getting sloppy drunk and doing doughnuts in the fairways is not acceptable behavior. Experienced golfer or not unless you were raised by wolves it should be obvious that is not OK.

Pet Peeve said...

Wow, sounds like the golf course is a very dangerous place to be when you have that many drunk men swinging golf clubs. Very funny. We would love to hear from you at our blog on what you think about our pet peeves. Thank you! http://personal-petpeeves.blogspot.com/