Digging Myself Out of a Marital Trap

Digging Myself Out Blog

New Year’s resolutions are a holiday tradition. It’s the perfect opportunity to make promises you can’t possibly keep. Exercise more. Drink less. Golfers start each new season with much more lofty goals. Practice more. Cuss less. There is one resolution, however, I intend to keep this year. Under no circumstances will I ever invite my wife to caddie for me again.

Crystal and I have been married for more than 30 years. We share many of the same interests, the one exception being golf. In fact, to the best of my knowledge, she had never been on an actual golf course until last summer.

While on vacation, we played “Let’s Make a Deal” (sound familiar, husbands?). She would spend the morning with me at a nearby golf resort if I agreed to take her shopping later that afternoon. It seemed fair, I guess… like the time she convinced me after our second child was born to trade in my red sports car for a drab blue mini-van.

The first four or five holes was peaceful bliss. She was content to drive the golf cart and enjoy the scenery and beautiful weather. And I was genuinely happy to have her along for the ride. Just the two of us, away from the kids, spending quality time together. Who knows, I thought. If I got really lucky, she might forget all about the outlet malls and I could squeeze in a second 18.

Then the wheels fell off.

Everyone knows silence is golden on the golf course. Unless you’re with your wife. What had I done?    -Bud Key

From the White Tees - Branding Block

By the time we reached the clubhouse turn, Crystal wasn’t speaking to me. Everyone knows silence is golden on the golf course. Unless you’re with your wife. What had I done? I quickly went through a mental checklist of possible transgressions.

Had I insulted my mother-in-law in the last 30 minutes? Nope. Had I mentioned the new $400 driver in my bag? Not yet. Had I stared a couple of seconds too long at the really hot, mid-30s, blonde (or was it brunette?) beverage cart attendant at hole 5? Maybe. Okay, probably. But I had been very discrete and barely noticed the lilac purple, deep neckline, sleeveless criss-cross halter top she was wearing.

So what I had I done to deserve the silent treatment? With no other recourse, I mustered enough courage to ask her what was wrong.

Now let it be said I love my wife very much. She is my best friend, an incredible mother and… well, she rarely if ever reads “From the White Tees” so enough sucking up. It should also be noted that she is a high school science teacher who can strike fear into the heart of even the most unruly student. That’s why I knew I was in serious trouble when she answered in her dreaded classroom voice.

“It’s amazing to me how you always find excuses not to help out around the house,” she shot back. “In the last hour I’ve watched you use that little divot thingamabob six times, pick up four broken tees, rake three sand traps and clean your clubs after every shot. And not complain once.”

So that was it. Crisis averted, I thought. After all, resolving domestic squabbles over little things like leaving dirty dishes in the sink or forgetting to put the toilet seat down is what I do best. A new Coach or Louis Vuitton designer purse or perhaps a dress from Ann Taylor or Talbots and all would be forgiven.

Until the other shoe dropped.

“And for your information,” she continued, with more than a hint of contempt. “That woman back there, the one you tipped $10 for a $3 beer, don’t think for a second they were real.”