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Getting Clubbed for Impulse Gift

Posted Sep 12 2008 6:10pm

I wrote this a few weeks ago, but never found time to post it.

Lael_golf_051907 For some reason, golf never really called to me. But ever since I took Seth to play miniature golf during the winter, he’s expressed interest in the game.

Not as much as fishing mind you, but Our Great View offers a constant reminder as golfers trudge through rain, sleet or snow to play.

Several weeks ago, I was at a CVS drug store near my work to develop one of those disposable film cameras Seth won at ChuckE.Cheese’s. On my way out, I saw a miniature-golf, floor-mat puzzle on one of the sale racks.

Although I rarely make impulse buys, this seemed pretty fun. I told my wife, Anne, to let the kids know I had a surprise for them. When I got home, they were bouncing off the walls with excitement. (Note to parents: Never say you have a surprise for your kids and then not deliver.)

Do you know how wonderful it is to see your kids bouncing up and down with big grins on their faces after 13 hours at work?

The kids were not at all disappointed with their $9.95 gift. Seth and Lael, with a little help from me, set it up in 10 minutes while Anne cooked dinner.

I made the kids take turns hitting the ball through the windmill into the pseudo hole (it was really just a cutout.) They seemed to be doing okay, though Seth would get upset when the ball rolled off the little course.

Lael didn’t care. Her favorite word and games are “Baaaaallll” and whacking. This involved both, of course.

Seth_golf_051907 The kids continued to play while we ate dinner. Seth started to hog the club. I made him give Lael a turn.

She lost interest in the ball, and whacked Seth instead. A few minutes later Seth was crying because Lael had moooshed the plastic ball. It now limped when it rolled.

I promised we would get new balls. Seth cried louder. I told him to knock it off or I would toss the game in the garbage. Seth stopped carrying on because he knows from experience that I meant it.

The next day, Lael chipped the putter. Seth was upset all over again.

But all is happy again. Mom bought Spiderman clubs and a big bag of golf balls. I’m sure the clubs will someday double as fine swords. The floor mat puzzle has been forgotten. Mom and Seth have graduated to hitting balls into cups at the park.

And I can’t stop being amused how a $10 impulse present suddenly became a $30 investment.

Maybe I’ll recoup the money someday when Seth starts calling himself Tiger Levy.

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