This is my 5th trip to this world-class vacation destination where you can capture all of Africa’s “Big Five” on film. When we arrived, there were two elephants and three giraffes to greet us on the way to Jaci’s Tree Lodge, and after two morning game drives and two late afternoons until dark, we’ve seen a pride of 14 lions and three cubs, several herds of elephants, and two babies, along with white rhino and this morning at dawn Cape buffalo.
Of course there are tons of zebra and koodo and wildebeests and antelope everywhere. Oh, and did I mention my photo safari mates were Tom Watson and his wife Hillary? Tom is playing at the Nedbank Golf Challenge and tonight is the Pro-Am gala with all the players.
Check out Jaci’s Tree Lodge for the vacation of a lifetime and a true treasure trove of memories and unforgettable photos.
Happy Thanksgiving from Speedy Greens who’s hoping all of our Death on the 16th Fairway fans will follow Speedy’s exploits at the 2012 Nedbank Golf Challenge at the world class Gary Player Country Club. Speedy is on his way to South Africa for the 5th time to host “Good Morning South Africa” with Gary Player from the broadcast tower and then work with former Ryder Cup Captain Sam Torrence on the 4 day telecast seen in the United States on The Golf Channel and around the world to 45 countries.
Former world # 1 Lee Westwood will be trying for his 3rd straight Nedbank title against a world class field and in the Champion’s Challenge Tom Watson leads a stellar field including Nick Price and Ian Woosnam.
Speedy Greens will once again be writing a column for the daily pairing sheets called “An American’s View” AND will be going on his 5th photo safari to capture Africa’s Big 5 on film…hope you’ll follow my adventures on and off the golf course right here and Happy Holidays!
Read all about it! Here’s the official announcement about “Death on the 16th Fairway.”
Support the USO’s initiative to help those who sacrifice so much transition from the battlefield to a full and productive future.
This menu is to help avoid the pitfalls of a blind or arranged date. Whether you are a new first timer, an experienced second timer, or even a third timer, this information should be helpful.
First step, you must google him. If you have his business card, that will help. If he uses a middle initial or has a title, that will save time. If you do not have his card, be prepared to spend a few minutes discovering his profile. This is important, especially on an arranged date or first meeting. If this is someone you work with, be especially careful and very discrete.
Second step, check out the location. If you are going to lunch or dinner, you must research the restaurant on the internet. If a dinner date, be sure to confirm if alcohol is served or is it BYOB. This will eliminate an awkward situation, especially if it’s BYOB. You can call him and confirm the date. You could ask if it’s okay for you to bring the bottle or would he prefer to make a selection.
Third step, check out the menu. If you have a restricted diet, be sure the restaurant offers something you can eat. Don’t be afraid to call and ask questions of the staff before you arrive. Staffers are very helpful; in addition, most restaurants have a sample menu on their website. You may also want to read the reviews, especially the selections to avoid.
Fourth step, know the dress code for the evening, especially if you going from a restaurant to a movie. You may be comfortable during dinner and then freeze your assets off at the movies. If you are going from dinner to dancing, you want to know that in advance, especially for your shoe selection. The right heel is important. If he is showcasing you to his friends, try to find this out before time. You have only one chance to make a first impression.
During dinner you have expectations and hope that he meets at least one. That will ensure a second meeting if you so desire.
You may hope for the following:
- A person who is polite. This may seem old fashioned but a sense of mutual respect would be nice.
- Someone with a sense of humor, not uptight or nervous. The evening is for enjoyment, not a walk across a minefield.
- A person who talks about subjects in which you may have interest. Guys talk about sports, food and beer. Don’t expect too much after those subjects unless it’s the movies, the stock market and the weather. You can help guide the conversation, but stay away from politics.
- A person who asks you about yourself, your hobbies, your goals and dreams. This may be too much information on a first date, so give a little insight but don’t ramble about yourself. Seek to find out what you have in common especially if you like sports.
What you don’t want or expect:
- A proposition, if that is the game plan, please call a time out. You may want to have a headache and leave early. Be sure to destroy his business card and change your e-mail address.
- Stories of past loves, girlfriends or marriages. Crude jokes or stories about any subject that he calls to mind. If he wants to talk about his children, be tolerant but don’t let that conversation dominate the evening, unless you really, really want to know the name of the kid’s turtle or favorite pop star.
- A jealousy discussion about his job or friends or whining about what could have been. A person who sees life as a burden and that the glass is half empty should be avoided. If he talks about his brothers and sisters that’s okay but not if it’s negative stories about infighting. You don’t want to become part of a family feud.
The duration of the date or first meeting is not relevant when evaluating how you spent your time.
You should hope for the following:
- You felt comfortable and would like to repeat the experience.
- Your new friend is someone you could introduce to your best friend.
- You would consider a second date. You could agree after you check your calendar, but a second meeting is not guaranteed.
- That you could pick the time and place for a second date.
- You mutually agree to exchange business cards, phone numbers or e-mail addresses.
- You part with a handshake or hug and a smile. He volunteers to walk you to your car, drive you to your residence or pays for a cab.
You don’t want the following:
- A proposition to join him at a conference in Reno.
- The feeling that he gave you a break by taking you out on the town. He did you a favor. You looked desperate.
- A person who is evasive to commitment, a simple yes or no to your questions is fine. You can handle either response.
- Someone who wants to play tonsil hockey, when they depart.
I’m sure there are many things that could be added. This is just a short menu to dating. Someone once said ‘better to have dated and lost; then never to have dated” or something like that. Good luck on your next first meeting or arranged date and please think positive. You are meant for greatness.
When you join the ranks of golfers
There are rules that you must learn
That playing golf’s a privilege
Never to be spurned.
Many friends you will acquire
Self discipline will be earned
You’ll always check your backswing
Never playing out of turn.
Your playing dates and schedule
You hope will follow the sun.
You’ll never miss a tee time
The course is for everyone.
Some say that golfers are very strange
And many do agree
They speak words that are foreign
Except to you and me.
And in your setting years
When no longer can you play
You’ll always have your memories
They’ll never go away.
Give praise to all the golfers
With whom you walked the grounds
And be sure to thank the golf gods
When you start your heavenly rounds.
There is a place called Fader’s Bog
And bad things happen there.
Players say it isn’t safe
So golfers be aware.
The caddies say it’s haunted
It will steal your strokes away.
Members should avoid it
The bog will ruin your day.
And when you bring a guest to play
You may want to skip 16.
For on the right is that bog
Accused of many things.
If perchance you lose a ball
Let it be okay.
For Fader’s Bog is one place
You hope to stay away.
If someone says I’m afraid of the bog
You can tell your friend it’s true.
Nothing good can come from it
Don’t let the bog get you.
The audio recording session for Death on the 16th Fairway was a great success. Thanks to everyone involved.
Alistair is in his early 20s. He is very enthusiastic and accommodating to Ryan’s Way Golf members. Al has an excellent memory for details and the rules of golf.
Alistair is single and a recent college graduate with a degree in marketing and advertising. He recently completed an online course in consumer affairs.
Alistair has been playing golf since he was 12. He has played in regional tournaments and has traveled locally since his freshman year in high school.
Alistair is a good organizer with creative ideas for golf competition. He is working on a new competition tied to gambling for on-course play. Many of the members consider Al the best swing mechanic on staff.
Alistair’s personal goal is to become the manager of a large private club, hotel, casino or any combination of the aforementioned. He is continuing his education online and in the evening. His best friend at Ryan’s Way is Johnny Fourtrees, the head groundskeeper.
Alistair was added to the full time staff as the Club’s membership expanded over the past three years.
Alistair does not handle pressure well from people outside the golfing community.
Johnny is forty-something years of age. Quiet around club members, he is very vocal to the staff. Johnny relocated from Arizona seven years ago at the request of the Club’s Personnel search committee, chaired by Augustus Trap.
Johnny is single. He holds a certificate in landscaping and outdoor design and owned a small business in Arizona servicing several small public courses. Johnny sold his business when he was offered the opportunity to be head groundskeeper at Ryan’s Way.
Johnny plays golf on Monday when the course is closed. He knows every inch of the course. Johnny returns to Arizona whenever his course is closed.
He keeps to himself and is always on time. Johnny served in the military for eight years with Special Forces.
The board of directors considers Johnny a model and trusted employee.
Tyler Flagg is in his mid 40s, a very proper representative of the golf industry.
He has been a professional golfer for 17 years, starting at Ryan’s Way as the second assistant and advancing to head professional nine years ago. He lives for golf and has spent all his life in the private club golf community.
Tyler graduated from an Ivy League college with a degree in economics. He knows all the right people in local society. He is a member and past president of the local Rotary Club.
Tyler attends many community business/social events representing Ryan’s Way. He and Monty Woods, the Club president, are seen together at all the regional events and expos of the golfing industry.
He is married with two children and lives within four miles of the course.
Tyler owns Ryan’s Way golf Pro Shop with a percentage of the profits going into the Club’s general fund. He contributes his opinions to the Club’s membership and policy committees regarding the products and services the Club should provide.
Monty Woods is fifty-plus years of age. He is serving for the sixth time as president of the Club.
Monty has been a member of Ryan’s Way for 25 years. He is responsible for many of the course improvements, which he accredits to his membership surveys.
Monty retired two years ago after selling his communications business in 2005. He spends his mornings at the Club. Monty is always asking the members about how to improve the course. His world is the golf course and the private club life. Several members believe that he overreacts to situations, especially about the golf course.
Monty does not like surprises, especially concerning the Member/Member dinner, his annual big event.
Monty has never had a handicap lower than 20. He never wagers on the outcome of his matches but bets on the derby.
Monty always says when he stops golfing he will take up fishing.
Dimples Reagan is a single, career-minded woman. Dimples has worked at the Ryan’s Way for five years and was recently promoted to Club manager. Her prior position was as Club banquet manager. Some say that Dimples has moved up the ranks rather quickly with the help of an overly attentive Preston Heinz.
Dimples is a graduate of the Media School of Business with a minor degree in interior decorating. In the past, she has worked as an events planner and wedding planner.
Dimples is not a golfer. She does a good job as a consumer adviser and knows how to spend other peoples’ money.
Dimples is a member of the personnel and non-golf special events committees. Many staff members underestimate her abilities.
Dimples and head Golf Professional Tyler Flagg are the best of friends. They attend buyers’ conventions to purchase products sold in the Pro Shop.
Dimples and Sissy Fairways are shopping buddies.
Dimples dresses to the nines every day. She often is described as a clotheshorse. She follows a strict fitness and nutrition regimen.
Her favorite cable channel is the Style Channel.
Sissy Fairways is the wife of A. Randolph (Randy) Fairways, the son of D. Sanford (Sandy) Fairways. The Fairways are one of the founding families of the Ryan’s Way Golf Club.
Sissy is on the social register and is invited to attend many non-golf events. Her opinions are highly regarded by members and staff at Ryan’s Way.
Sissy has a degree in fashion design with a minor in public speaking. She attended the best schools selected by her father, Admiral Bernard Huntington. Sissy has become best friends with Ryan’s Way manager Dimples Reagan. They often shop together for the clothing sold at the Ryan’s Way Pro Shop.
Sissy has played golf and tennis all her life. She also chairs the Club’s Foundation for junior golf development.
Sissy chairs most of the social events at Ryan’s Way. She has chaired the Recognition Dinner for the past eleven years.
Sissy’s opinion is highly regarded by the members at Ryan’s Way. Head golf professional, Tyler Flagg, often consults with Sissy before making his decisions.
Miss Irons is in her early thirties and earned the nickname ‘Poly’ because she can tell a lie from the truth. Poly is an attractive, self-assured woman. She has a keen eye for detail, especially in evaluating people’s responses to her questions.
Poly is single, athletic and an accomplished tennis player. She played golf in high school and her first year in college. Later, Poly switched to tennis, because, she said, golf was too slow, expensive, took too much time, and has too many rules to learn.
Poly majored in criminal psychology with a minor in communications, graduating with honors in the top ten percent of her class.
Poly has worked for the County for six years. She has investigated 11 deaths in the past five years. This is the second case in which Poly is the lead detective and her second case on a golf course. Poly had investigated a death two years earlier when a golfer was struck by lightning, at the Bitter End Golf Club.
Poly’s personal opinion of golfers in private golf clubs is negative. She believes results matter and is politically correct. People in the law enforcement community consider her a rising star.
Lt. Hazard has just turned 50. His surprise birthday party was held at Ryan’s Way Golf Club. Lt. Hazard has lived in the area all his life. He caddied at the course in high school. For several years before his promotion to lieutenant, Lt. Hazard was a social member of the Club.
Lt. Hazard attended the Police Academy after serving in the Air Police during his time in the U.S. Air Force. He usually works the swing shift, 4 pm to midnight. He is not an early riser.
Lt. Hazard ticketed Mark Heinz ten years ago for reckless driving and speeding. The judge threw out the case. Hazard received no explanation but suspected Preston Heinz of interfering.
Lt. Hazard has been awarded several honors for marksmanship with a handgun. He attends classes in new technologies in law enforcement.
Dr. Wedge is a single 46 year-old woman. She is a full time instructor at State College, where she teaches biology and pre-med courses. She has a limited practice at the County Hospital where she serves as County Coroner.
Dr. Wedge travels to educational seminars that emphasize forensic discovery techniques. She is also an avid hockey fan.
Dr. Wedge is an excellent card player. She enjoys happy hour and novelty drinks.
In the past, Dr. Wedge has worked with Poly Irons and considers Poly one of the best and brightest examples of an accomplished, hard working detective.
Dr. Wedge has considered becoming a social member at Ryan’s Way. Many of her colleagues at the hospital are golfing members.
Augustus Trap is retired and very active in his retirement. Recently widowed, he spends most of his free time at Ryan’s Way Golf Club. He has played in all the tournaments since joining Ryan’s Way. He follows the rules of golf to the letter.
Augustus has no other family. He enjoys playing golf with different Club members and sometimes wagers on the outcome. Augustus attends most of the social activities at the Club.
Augustus was the comptroller for a large publicly traded chemical company. He is a member of the Club’s finance committee and is considered an experienced financial advisor.
Augustus is an early riser and often first to arrive at the course. He is a strict observer of golf tradition.
Augustus lives within walking distance of the clubhouse. Ashley Hagen’s family are his next door neighbors.
Ashley recently completed a two-year course in nutrition at State College. She is the most recent hire at Ryan’s Way. Ashley hopes to become a chef and plans to own her own restaurant.
Ashley is quick learner. She is impressed with Club second pro Alistair Lane, who has quickly gained the confidence of the Ryan Ways’ members. Ashley discusses her plans with Alistair, seeking his advice. They are often seen together.
Gracie Fontaine, the head server, is responsible for Ashley’s training.
Bogey is an exceptional bartender. His main claim to fame is winning the Bartender of the County Contest in 1998. Bogey’s famous mixed drinks are the Double Bogey, the Triple Bogey, and Lights Out. Bogey makes special drinks for special occasions, especially the Recognition Dinner’s Worm Burner Cocktail.
Bogey is married to a local real estate agent. He is an advocate of fitness and nutrition. Bogey is the lead singer of the award-winning Happy Suds Barbershop Quartet.
Bogey is a graduate of the Memphis School of Mixology, a nationally recognized institution. He says that his little black book of drinks lists every concoction known to man.
Bogey connects drinkers’ faces to favorite drinks. He will gamble on any competition. Bogey’s annual vacation is to Las Vegas from mid -January to mid-February, when Ryan’s Way is closed. He places bets on sporting events for himself and certain Club members. Although he is talkative, the members trust Bogey. He often gives unsolicited advice on any subject.