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Dan Sollom | Playing golf with old guys

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They say age is just a number, but if you’re an old guy, it’s a big number.

I’ve also heard this one: “Sixty is the new 40.” No it’s not. It’s still 60. Seventy is still 70 and 80 is ... well, you get it.

One of the great things about the game of golf is you can begin playing as a young child and continue enjoying the game well into your senior years. I didn’t start hacking it around until my 20s, and after five decades of play, I have observed a dramatic change in the banter and subject matter between swings. In my 20s it was all about fun stuff like girls, cars, motorcycles, beer and parties. In my 60s, it’s about body parts not working, pictures of grandchildren, taking meds and complaining about the mattress that won’t allow a good night’s sleep.

I recently listened to two of my golf partners talk about how often they get up in the middle of the night to go to the bathroom. Really! “I got up to go three times last night,” said one guy. “I only got up twice but sat there for at least five minutes each time,” said the other. (Sat there??)

Then there is always one guy in the foursome that can’t see the ball flight and relies on the other three guys to track it or help look for it — so annoying. (That’s me, by the way). Poor hearing is also an issue, especially in windy conditions. You might witness this exchange if you’re playing with old guys:

“It sure is windy today,” player one says.

“Wednesday? I thought it was Thursday,” player two says.

“You’re thirsty? Me too, let’s have a beer,” number three answers.

If you play the game, no matter your age, pay attention to what your group talks about.

If every guy in your foursome is north of six decades and the topics are girls, parties, cars, motorcycles and beer, then you are most likely playing golf in California.

But around here we act our age, and it sounds like it. “Jim, you’re quitting after only two holes?” I said.

Jim replied, “Yeah, my back is killing me. I think it’s my mattress, or it could be that I’m just an old guy.”

Playing golf with old guys: Turn up your hearing aids, because it really is cheap entertainment.

See you on the first tee.