It's Really Tough Times for Gangsome
This is starting out as a tough spring for the Gates Four Gangsome.
If these guys have accomplished nothing else in their storied careers, they have proven beyond the shadow of doubt that time waits for no man.
It was a couple of years ago that our club statistician figured out that the average age of this group of 20-plus bodies was dead. That should have given us a hint of things to come, but we’re not just old, we’re stubborn.
Thing is, it’s getting tougher and tougher to get more than a couple of foursomes together for those ever-earlier 11 o’clock tee times.
As the Big Dipper said the other day, “This is last time I’m going to do this, guys.”
“It’s the last time I’m going to get old. I’ve tried it now and I don’t like it. Ain’t going to do it again.”
The Gangsome has run the gauntlet of illnesses, joint replacements and arthritis remedies. We’re all on a first-name basis with our caretakers. You might say our Medicare runneth over.
If it were not for generic drugs, we wouldn’t have enough money left for cart fees. As it is, we’ve had to cut down our breakfasts at Rooster’s Café from three eggs to one.
The latest member of the Gangsome who has to carry a card with him to get through a metal detector is Puddin’. Don’t ask me how Puddin’ got that nickname. But I heard that it was given to him about 50 years ago by a Massey Hill cheerleader.
Puddin’, you’ve got to be kidding!
Anyway, ol’ Puddin’, who has a creek at Gates Four named after him with signage to prove it, is being forced to take some time off from the golf course these days while he’s nursing a hip replacement.
It’s literally killing the guy, but he doesn’t get a whole lot of sympathy from the rest of the gang. When you’re the only guy in the group who still has a full head of hair, you don’t get many mulligans.
While it appears Puddin’ won’t be swinging again before late April or May, ol’ C-Dog is having his own problems. C-Dog, who was born and raised in Beaverdam before moving to the metropolis of Fayetteville, may set a world record for wakes attended in a calendar year.
And the bad thing is, they’re all for family members. Between C-Dog and his wife, Reba, they’ve lost five relatives since last winter. Three of them came within the last two weeks.
C-Dog is a tough ol’ son of a gun, but he says nobody in his family is buying green bananas anymore.
But back to those joint replacements. There’s enough hardware in the average Gangsome foursome to start a junkyard. Let’s see: Dipper has a knee, Savage has a knee, P.G. has two knees and an ankle, Garo has a shoulder, Craze can’t even count all his surgeries, C-Dog has a shoulder, and the others are walking around with limps and thinking about scheduling a visit with an orthopedist.
And the list goes on. In fact, J-Dog is in intensive care at Cape Fear Valley Medical Center as we speak, suffering from some kind of aneurism. Craze just got back from Chapel Hill for continuing cancer treatment.
Boy George recently underwent a heart procedure and is happily making regular stops at his favorite fried chicken place again.
Casey is only limping a little from his knee problem, but his daughter is still recovering from a serious automobile accident.
And yet the beat goes on. These guys are seasoned veterans … of everything. And the cholesterol isn’t the only thing getting higher by the day. So are the handicaps.
Only problem is these handicaps can’t be improved by taking lessons from the friendly club professional. Nope, these things demand physical therapy.
Only trouble with that is that most of the guys are too weak to do the exercises. Even stretching those rubber bands is getting to be tough.
Some of us can still remember when we used to sit around the 19th hole talking about old girlfriends. Now the talk is about the latest surgery or what time the wake is being held.
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