Golf. Even non-golfers must have a passing knowledge of the game in order to get by in business especially financial services - such is the extent of this affliction amongst the commercial community. It has much the same relationship to business that coffee does - it is almost synonymous with the doing of business in some circles. At times the extent of the affliction is such that commerce is merely a cover for the true purpose of gatherings - the indulgence in golf.
During the early nineties some brave medical staff explored the attractiveness of crack cocaine. It provides a relatively safe, vivid and yet shortlived 'high'. Surely golf has some similarity to this. Even in my limited exposure to the game, tantalisingly, occasionally, one can hit a good ball. That shortlived high. But then one must hunt for it again. The crack analogy applies perhaps especially to the devotees of a particular form of the golf addiction. I refer of course to the testosterone charged pursuit of the longest drive.
"He can hit a big ball" is uttered in hushed tones in the restrooms of the towers of high finance - and it is indeed a complement. This is not the pursuit of just the alpha-male silverbacked primates of the financial jungle. It does, in fact, require considerable accuracy and finesse. Timing, stance, strength - yes - but ability more than anything else is required. Personally, I am hopeless at it. My first drive trickled onto the fairway in front of a large crowd. It has improved only a little since. However one seriously long driver is Mike Maloney. Mike is one of the founders of the New Zealand Long Drive Association. Can you hit a big ball? email him firstname.lastname@example.org