Bandon Dunes was rated as a top course so golfing legend Arnold Palmer thought he would drop in and play a round. But horror of horrors, the guy behind the counter expected him to pay.
    As Palmer pointed out, “That’s the first time I’ve had to pay to play golf since I was 17.”
     On the one hand, he makes an excellent point. After all, this is Arnold Palmer…this is not John Q. Hacker just off the pavement wanting to use his steamshovel to take chunks out of your golf course in his frantic attempts to drive the green. This is not Joe Putterswinger hurling his 9 Iron at the nearest tree after dumping that easy chip shot in the water hazard. This is Arnold Palmer.
    Wherever he goes he gets comped because of who he is and what he has done. And yeah…at some point he probably does come to expect it. If everything had been one way for 60 years for me, I might have certain expectations as well.
     As for the dude that charged him…please drop us a line to let us know how your next job works out. I know the sign on the local McDonalds says they are always hiring bright people, so maybe you should try to get on at Jack in the Box. At least there if you charge Jack you will have no excuse…his head is HUGE.
       Be that as it may, I do have a certain amount of resentment over this situation. I have, over the years, spent thousands of dollars playing golf. I seldom play anymore because it is too expensive and frankly, I just can’t afford to drop 30 or 40 bucks a weekend to walk around hitting a ball. And that is at courses much uhm…less presitigious, shall we say…than Bandon Dunes.
    Why is it that those of us who struggle to affor the game are expected to pay while those who can easily afford not only a round but also probably to flat out purchase the course get to play for free?
     I understand that is how it is…but is that how it should be?
      I honor and respect what Palmer did for the game…but for all the people saying they will never play the Dunes until they make it right with Arnold…well, have fun with that. I am sure the Dunes will really feel it in the pocketbook. There are already so few people that can afford to play there I doubt most of you would make it anyway. Have fun with that protest. Maybe next week you can tell us you won’t be on the next space shuttle unless NASA resolves their safety issues. I am sure they too are trembling at the potential devastation they face.

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