If it weren’t for bad luck, I’d have no luck at all. I played in a golf tournament today. I realize that the word “tournament” makes me sound like a “real” golfer, but nothing could be further from the truth. Women like me get together in what we call “9-hole groups” because we are either (a) too lazy to play all 18 holes or (b) too lousy to play all 18 holes. These women engage in what we call “Hits and Giggles.”

To make things interesting, we create little “tournaments” for ourselves. These are merely excuses to get a bunch of women together for socializing, eating, drinking, and winning prizes. Yes, we do hit balls, but the nature of these tournaments is to get the competition over as quickly as possible so we can get to the lemon drops and buffet table. Thus we play “Scrambles,” which I suspect were invented by a male golfer to herd women through 9 holes quickly so that the real golfers (men) can have the course back.

The male golf pros put us together in teams of four of varying abilities (from bad golfer to really bad golfer). All four women hit their balls, which makes the pros buckle to the ground clutching their privates. (Snicker). Then the ladies hit their own golf balls. The ball that goes furthest without landing in the water is the one that all four women get to place their balls beside and hit from there. Everyone hits again, they walk to the best ball, and all hit from there until they finally get the ball onto the green and into the cup. Some lucky teams manage to par a hole here and there, and they usually win the tournament.

Today my team had two very bossy women who were driving me and the 4th team member nuts. The 4th team member, Pat, was 81 years old and wasn’t about to be bossed around by some 50 year old whipper snapper. Things got testy. When Karen started giving Pat advice, Pat snapped, “Who’s hitting this ball, you or me?” It was a tense moment, but luckily Karen backed up and said, “Whoa. Have at it,” and bloodshed was avoided.

Despite the barrage of advice (you can always tell an “amateur” golfer because they love to give advice to everyone even as their own balls ricochet off trees and hop from sand trap to sand trap. One of these days I’m going to slap one of them – I came this close to doing it this morning).

We managed to finish without snatching each other’s hair out and actually started having a good time once Pat and I stopped pouting. We joined all the other ladies in the dining room and anticipated the awards. They give prizes for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place teams. We waited to see if our names were called but they weren’t. I wasn’t really expecting it, but our game didn’t totally suck and I thought we might come in third. It’s hard to tell when they figure in the handicaps how your score will stack up against the others.

Are you sick of golf? Just bear with me for a couple more minutes and I’ll wrap this puppy up.

After everyone got their prizes and the raffle prizes were awarded, I ended up with zip. I said to my teammates, “I used to win a raffle prize every single time but lately I haven’t won diddly.”

“What would you do with diddly if you won it?” Pat asked. She’s one sharp 81 year old woman.

“I bet we came in 4th,” I said, lacking a clever comeback, as usual. “Probably just one point off the money.”

“Let’s go see,” Karen said. “The board is over there.” I hadn’t noticed the board, which the golf pro had written all our scores on. Many of the women had already gotten up and left – anxious to get to their soaps. The four of us filed over to the board and looked for our score. “23.7” Karen said.

“What was the winning score?” I asked.

“23.9,” Wendy said.

I’m looking at that and thinking, “Hmmm, now in golf the goal is to get the LOWEST score, and isn’t 23.7 lower than 23.9?” I said this out loud.

“Yes, it is lower,” Karen said. “We should have been the winners!”

“Oh my gosh, how did they screw that up? We won and nobody even noticed?”

We called the two ladies who planned the tournament over and showed them the numbers. They both raised their hands to their mouths and said, “Oh my. There’s been a terrible mistake. What can we do?”

The answer to that was obvious. We split up right now and run out to the parking lot and snatch our winnings off of those other women. We throw pies in the face of the golf pro who made the mistake. And we sue the place for whatever reason an ambulance chaser can come up with like wrongful neglect of proper scoring, mens rea and gluteus maximus ad infinitum.

This is what I was saying in my heart, but since golf is a genteel sport, we all said, “Oh it’s okay, we’re just happy we won, don’t think anything of it,” and other assorted BS that none of us meant. We came away empty handed without a shred of glory.

There is no justice in this world, or my luck is so bad that I can’t win even when I do win. Pitiful.