It was the spiraling cycle of all cycles. Other downward moods are judged on this one. The textbooks probably actually cite us as an anecdote to show how displaying frustrations on the golf course can affect even the most loving couples.
My wife was halfway through a large bucket of balls, and it was going so badly I had only hit a few from my bucket. At some point, I swear she sped up just to hit all of her balls and get it over with.
Her swing was consistently bad: standing up on the backswing, swinging too hard, closed clubface at the bottom, hitting the ball off the hosel, then toe, then hosel. And leaving golf-ball sized holes all over her tee box.
(By the way, I’m kind of amazed that one can hit a golf ball straight into the ground and get it to bounce so high.)
She was getting really frustrated, so naturally I ‘helped’ the cause with a statement said halfway under my breath, without any breaths at all, and walking away. (Does it seem to you that any statement made walking away from the wife is going to lead to more trouble?)
Here’s what I said: “I can’t offer any new things until you change your grip, you stop over swinging, start taking a few practice swings once in a while, and keep a positive attitude.”
So she did the natural thing any wife would do after receiving sound advice … she ignored everything I said. She sped up her practice, then completely stopped and, even after a few minutes to cool down, refused to hit any of mine.
Now for the crucial point of this downward cycle… I couldn’t hit my bucket worth a lick either.
I’m not sure if she was smiling or smirking or flipping me off, but she sure was doubting her choice to have me ‘coach’ her that evening, if ever.
What I learned … The driving range is a great date for an unmarried couple, but it’s a potential expository on poor communication skills for married couples.