I don’t always eat breath mints. But when I do, it is in a public restroom.

“Oh, this place is fancy,” I said to my friend as I rubbed complimentary hand cream onto my elbows.

“I know, right?,” she called back through the stall door. “There is a bottle opener in here over the toilet.”

Country club life is a different sort. As hard as I tried, I could not think of one instance in my 42 years when I had need of opening a bottle while in the toilet.

I could almost understand drinking inside a bathroom, but you’ve got to admit it is an odd place to start one’s beverage of choice.

I spritzed my mop of hair with the complimentary spray, while my friend searched around for other bathroom bottle openers, as this was a particular curiosity she was not going to be able to easily get past.

We grabbed a couple more mints and walked back through the curious bonus space nice bathrooms have — the area with one of those odd toilet sofas, a fake ficus and a wall phone — and made our way back to the cheese table.

We knew nothing about golf. Yet here we were, volunteering at our employer’s golf outing.

“Is this a par 3 or par 4?” asked the well-tanned man stepping from his golf cart.

“I think it’s a par 4!” I said, with the confidence of someone who had a 50% chance of being right.

If only my high school gym teacher could have seen me, I thought. She would have been proud.

We were only an hour in, but I could see how people could fall in love with the game. Aside from the swinging and aiming (I’ve done enough mini-golf to know I’m not about that life. By the fifth hole in mini-golf I’m using my feet).

But everything else about the game, I really like. Sitting outside. Chatting with my friend. Shouting across the course at people we knew. And every once in a while, cavort with passing tournament players, asking them to play our “dice game”, which was, after all, the job we volunteered for.

We were supposed to take golfers’ money, hand them a set of jumbo dice and tell them if they got snake eyes (and yes every single time I said “snake eyes” I felt like a cool Vegas dealer) or double sixes they could “move ahead to the fringe” on the 10th hole.

For non-golfers, the fringe is the grass next to the putting area. I know this because I just looked it up on my phone. This area is not to be confused with the “fridge,” which is food-cooling appliance and also what my dyslexic eyes saw when I read the dice game directions.

I rationalized that the fridge was a place of honor as any elementary school artist would tell you and being on the fridge in golf was no different.

It was lots of fun when players did get on the fringe or fridge. They cheered. We cheered. The entire pack got sloppy with high-fives and accolades. Then the players would hop in their cart and peal off at a rate that told me these country club carts did not have governors.

Then my friend and I would go back to our favorite part of the game — sitting on a bench, chatting, eating mints and wondering what kind of beverages people are drinking in the loo.

Martha Petteys writes a weekly column for The Post-Star. She can be contacted at petteyshome@gmail.com or visit or on Facebook.


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