With Masters week upon us, the arrival of Spring, and opening of golf season , it seemed like a timely tribute to the people and the place I have been a part of my entire life; Mount Pleasant Golf Club.
As I meandered through the clubhouse last evening for the annual “Smoker” (the club’s traditional kickoff event to commence the new season) I was reminded what a great place this is to be a part of. Dad had me up there at 3 years old in the 1970s. Had my first beer there (don’t worry, I was 4 at the time), drove my first motorized vehicle there (fear not, I was 5), played my first game of 45s there (relax, I was 8 and there was a kitty) and made a lifetime of friends there.
I was a full member for more than 25+ years but when my offspring were little, I decided to step back and simply be a social (aka drinking) member. But, I will be back again for certain some day.
Last evening reminded me of the legends that roamed these grounds when, ah hem, the beloved ‘old’ clubhouse was still in place.
Names like Timmy “Ace” Vaughn, Eddie “Hot Top” Walsh, John “Skippy” Boyle, Tommy “Face” Conlon, Ray “Brooksie” Brooks, and, of course “Mr.” Billy Moriarty.
Those names and many more were absolute legends. Legends on the course, and larger legends in the clubhouse. Fun, tough, hard men. No excuses, greatest generation, “women weaken legs“-type of fellows who spent the few free hours they had each week on Staples Street with their buddies.
These boys had some basic but hard rules in those days – which had zero to do with golf…
If your wife called the actual phone at Mt. Pleasant, you were an outcast and un-politely asked to leave the premises immediately.
If you were not cracking a cold Budweiser on the first tee (at any hour of the day, mind you) then you were forced to take a mandatory testosterone test.
If every third word out of your mouth was not a swear, slang or off-colored comment, then just shut the f*&K up.
Pretty simple, I think?
These were bad ass dudes.
I have some great memories of those men. Always a life lesson when I encountered them – perhaps not always a good one – but always an education or, at the very least, a dirty limerick or joke.
Forward We Go
As time wore on, those legends slowly – and reluctantly – passed the torch the current Boys of the Old Brigade. Now aging icons with names like Hassett, Wheeler, Livingston, Rourke, Mullavey, Coit, Shaughnessy, McKiernan, Healy, Costello, Murphy, Cassin, Dowd, McCarty, Emerson, Fawcett, Meade…(and the list goes on and on…so forgive me if I missed a few of you).
This generation was slightly softer than their predecessors but equally vigilant in their pursuit to leverage their Mt. Pleasant friendships and comradery to simply ‘do good‘. Hundreds of thousands of dollars have been been organically raised by these guys over the years; supporting every type of cause; from cancer to little league baseball.
The Jimmy Fund alone has been the beneficiary of nearly $1,000,000 in the last 30+ years (shout out to J.R.)
All of the above and many more have made this “neighborhood club” awesome. They have protected it, advanced it, and cherished it. For those of you, like me, that have been fortunate enough to be a part of this 1910-founded institution, you know what I mean.
And the “new” guard of MP is certainly in great hands being lead and served by men named Jenkins, Tulley and more.
It’s a great place. Great for kids. Great for families. REALLY great for MEN.
Thank you fellas.
Enjoy the Masters.