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There are few sports that one can do well in flip flops. As we’ve proven scientifically, running and flip flops don’t mix so finding a flip flop friendly sport is challenging. Darts is an activity that one can play in flip flops however it’s classification as a sport is dubious at best and is probably better classified as a game. After much thought and consideration there is one sport that comes to mind that requires no running. Golf. Now, rather than getting bogged down into the debate as to whether golf is a sport or not we’ll go with the Wikipedia definition of golf as “… a club and ball sport…” and work from there.
Golf may be the only sport in which there is considerable motion and athleticism but absolutely no running. Not only are you excercising but you are doing so outside on perfectly manicured grass, usually in perfect spring or summer weather. What better place to stroll around in flip flops, club in hand, trying to knock the little ball into a hole. Golf is the perfect candidate to be a flip flop sport. Yet, it is not a flip flop sport for reasons that make no sense at all.
“why is it frowned upon to wear flip flops when golfing?”
Which brings us to the question, “why is it frowned upon to wear flip flops when golfing?” Now don’t start with that “importance of traction and need for balance and proper shoes for a proper sport” blather. It’s simply garbage. The small number of folks who play golf well do so professionally and may have an argument for the need for specialized foot ware. However, the vast majority of people who play golf do so poorly and therefore need not bother tossing hard earned money away for a pair of shoes that will be used solely to play golf. This makes as much sense as having a pair of shoes just for playing pick-up baseball, basketball, or horseshoes. It’s complete nonsense.
“We do not allow denim on this course.”
Which brings us to the absurd golf attire requirements. Most well heeled courses won’t allow denim and require collard shirts. Some allow shorts but do so begrudgingly. Why? I recall a rather odd encounter when my wife and I showed up at the first hole of a snooty public course in our area. We were greeted by the aged “starter” who looked us up and down and said, “we do not allow denim on this course.” Which confused me because I was in non-denim shorts which is when I noticed that my wife was in her typical fashion denim. His attempt to embarrass us, plus the fact that no one in the clubhouse said a word to us about this “rule” as they happily collected our money, infuriated me but I kept my cool. I looked him in the eye and very calmly said; “Are you asking my wife to take off her pants?” Well that seemed to do the trick, he stumbled over himself beet-faced telling us that he’d “allow it this time. But, in the future…” blah blah blah. Policies such as this is what give golf a bad name along with those who play golf.
I share this story to illustrate that golf is pretty uptight about what people where when golfing. So, before you slap on a pair of Haviana’s, Crocs, or God forbid, shower slides and hit the links you must exercise a certain amount of tact, dignity and decorum. If not, you give all flip flops a bad name and tarnish the Flip Flop Life.
Consider the course, is it a private club, fancy public course, or municipal golf course? Each requires its own flip flop.
The private club is the most difficult and least likely to allow you to stroll up to the first tee box in a pair of flip flops. However, you may be able to pull it off in a pair of Hari Mari x Peter Millar. Peter Millar is a brand that is made for golfers so that’s a good start. Also, the cost as much as or even more than a pair of nice golf shoes yet look and feel even better.
This is a fact that will likely impress the other club members as they tend to have much more money than sense. I say give it a go but be ready to switch out into other shoes. And for goodness sakes do not wear any denim. The reward of a day on the links in these flip flops far outweigh the risk of embarrassment. What’s more, you’ll very likely be the envy of the Country Club.
A fancy public course, like the one at which my wife and I had the issue with the starter, may be a bit more tricky. As is the case with those who are second fiddle, having their very identities defined by not being first fiddle. This is seen in the relationship between the United States and Canada, Hong Kong and Singapore, and Australia and New Zealand. In each case the latter strives to be the former yet cannot stop disparaging them or hide their envy; while the former barely even notices their existence. So, knowing this it would be a mistake to show up in a pair of Hari Mari x Peter Millar’s at a snooty public course as it’d immediately put them on the defensive. Here you’ll need to apply the illusion of exclusivity. And nothing will do so better than a pair of Ugg Seaside Flips.
The Ugg brand is a perfectly bourgeoise brand. It is everywhere among upper middle class yet known by everyone below. Those who wear them see them as something to strive for and feel a supreme sense of achievement when sporting them. This attitude best describes such a golf course. They’re stylish, comfortable and have good traction. Perfect for stroll through the grass.
A municipal course is much more forgiving and tends to have a broader depth of social and economic status among their clientele. Much like flying Southwest Airlines. So, you will also need to show a bit of tact. Showing up in a pair of Crocs makes you the guy on the Southwest flight with his bag of McDonalds stinking up the cabin.
You must choose carefully yet have much more leeway. A pair of Freewaters Supremes, Olukai Ohana’s, or Hari Mari Dunes would do nicely and show that you put some thought into your choice of foot ware. Just be sure to avoid cheaply made fully rubber flip flops or any flip flop that has traction issues.
Following these simple tips will give you the best golfing experience. So, give it a shot, wear those flip flops golfing. It certainly won’t make your game any worse and it may well increase your enjoyment of the exercise. In fact, you may find yourself deciding to ditch the clubs all together and just enjoy the walk, the fresh air, and the anticipation of when the snack cart might next appear.
One thing that golf allows, and some would argue encourages that most sports don’t, is drinking while playing. So, crack a beer or three, and enjoy the pitter patter of your flip flops on the green. Do Life Right – Flip Flop Daily. Fore!