Special Report #2: Stephen P. Bye; Correspondent for the Mirror Rearview, a fictional newspaper in Laicos County, USA. |
(August 29, 2016) This reporter interviewed Lester “Duff” Hacker, who was recently appointed as Laicos County Golf Manager. Two weeks ago, the County commissioners voted to terminate a ten-year old management contract with Golf Really Incredible Management (GRIM) for the three County golf courses and approved a new position of County Golf Manager. Hacker is a twenty year County employee, who most recently, was a senior manager in the County’s waste management division.
Mr. Hacker has developed a new business plan for the three golf courses and has already implemented several changes. Hacker’s ideas, which were wholly embraced by Alice N. Wonderland, County Executive and the majority of the commissioners, are very revolutionary in the golfing business. In essence, Ms. Wonderland wants to provide citizens with a more enjoyable experience and expand the golfer population and believes that the County can increase overall revenues by operating the golf courses directly under Mr. Hackers’ leadership.
The following are the details of Mr. Hacker’s plans:
• No golf fees will be paid by kids under 12 and by seniors over 60. Hacker believes that the lost revenue will be replaced by increased food and beverage sales in the restaurant and concession stands, as well as strategically placing several vending machines throughout the course. In addition, non-resident golfer rates will be increased to $75 for 18 holes and $50 for 9 holes, plus an imbedded $25 excise tax. Fees for other County residents have been reduced to $20 from $30 for 18 holes, and $10 from $15 for 9 holes. In addition, a frequent golfer program will now provide a free round for every ten rounds paid.
• The maintenance staff is currently removing advertising on benches, tee markers, and in the clubhouse. In addition, the large billboards located on the roads leading to the courses will be demolished. Hacker believes that signs and billboards are aesthetic eyesores, destroying the natural beauty of the golf courses. Hacker anticipates that the advertising revenue, approximately $50,000 annually, will be replaced by fines for violating golf policies, as well as the doubling of the non-resident golfer rates.
• The toilet paper in all restroom has been upgraded to four plies of finely pulped paper, enhanced with lotion and wax, having been special ordered through a luxury paper supplier. The toilet paper has multi-color flower designs to match the interior wallpaper, which is being selected by a well-known national interior design firm. Hacker has also interviewed fifty candidates as restroom attendants for the four bathrooms in the clubhouse, the two restroom facilities on each course, as well as for the concession buildings. Hacker unveiled the suit designs for the attendants, which have been ordered from well-known fashion designer in Paris, France.
• Hacker strongly felt that the traditional concession stand name of “half-way house” implied that golfers were visiting a center for addicts or prisoners. Therefore, the names for each half-way house for the 3 courses have been changed to “Love Shack” at the Hammer Valley Club, “Sugar Shack” at Sausage Creek Links and “Psychedelic Shack” at Round Trip Fields. Those respective songs, recorded by the B-52’s, Jimmy Gilmer and the Fireballs, and The Temptations, will be played repeatedly over the speaker systems. I questioned Hacker about the unusual choice of the name “Psychedelic Shack” on the Round Trip Fields course. He responded that most golfers need therapy, often hallucinating after posting atrocious scores the front nine holes. Round Trip Fields is rated in the top 100 most difficult public golf courses in the United States.
• Golfers can no longer use plastic or wooden tees, to comply with the environmental policies implemented by the County Commissioners in June. Free paper tees, which are biodegradable, are available in the golf shops. A fine of $15 will be levied for any golfer using plastic or wood tees and the violators will also be removed immediately from the golf course.
• Plastic straws are no longer supplied at the courses, although paper cups and glasses have been ordered with a special funnel design around the rim to restrict spilling. A 3-D printer has been purchased to manufacture the cups, as well as the paper golf tees.
• Mr. Hacker showed me the advertisement that will run in the Mirror Rearview this weekend for animal support caddies, who are also permitted to carry golf bags. Young kids with pet experience are preferred.
• A famous architectural firm has been engaged to design the two safe rooms in the clubhouse as well as the couches to comfort depressed golfers. Hacker has also developed a list of psychologists who will be interviewed as hot line consultants, as well as for permanent therapists for the “Psychedelic Shack”.
• A search has been initiated for a well-known chef, who will create rotating menus at the three courses and will use locally grown organic foods.
• Finally, 10-inch diameter cups have been ordered for the greens. This is one of Hacker’s key ideas, as he wants more golfers to record lower scores and feel happy. However, Hacker confessed that the state and national ruling golf organizations have threatened to remove the three County courses as officially sanctioned golf facilities, likening them to miniature golf operations. Hacker is consulting with the County attorney on appealing this.
I will update readers on Mr. Hacker’s plans in two weeks.
Stephen P. Bye, author; “Looking Forward Through The Rear View Mirror” "Looking Forward Through The Rear View Mirror" novel
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