My family has only a handful of traditions, but those traditions we have are fiercely adhered to: we dance the "pick the grape" dance at my dad's family reunions, we yell endlessly while touching the ceiling of our car whenever driving through the Mobile Tunnel, and we play Mini Golf whenever we're on vacation.
Mini Golf, or Putt Putt as it's sometimes known, may at first appear to be a game for small children or trolls, but in my family it becomes a full-contact sport. My family bets on everything, and the loser in Mini Golf always ends up being the family's butler for the rest of the trip. The person who is currently winning is also the person who is currently getting tripped up while putting or getting a 5-iron up the shorts on Hole 10. To put it simply, nobody in my family wants the shame and humiliation associated with losing at Mini Golf. We take our miniature sports seriously.
Over the years a pattern of play has emerged for each family member. For instance, my brother always starts off strong but ends up goofing around if he knows he's going to lose. My sister always starts off strong, gets flustered around the windmill (usually hole 12), goes on a roid rage and hits a 5 on the next two holes, and then finally picks it up a notch towards the end. I usually suck continuously and evenly throughout the entire game, but somehow always manage to end up in second.
That leaves my mom and dad. One of them always wins, and the other always ends up being our butler for the week. So us kids always try to aggravate the living crap out of them while they're playing, knowing that the only chance we have to win is to mess them up when there's "too much green" between them and the hole.
But this year I had extra help. My dad opted to play while holding my daughter Anne, and by Hole 17 Anne had decided that my dad was doing too well. But instead of aggravating the living doodoo out of him, she decided simply to doodoo on him.
How my dad managed to get a "2" on Hole 17 with poop dripping down his arm and leg is beyond me. He eventually won by a single stroke, and now we all have to bow down to His Excellency for the rest of the trip.
The funny thing is, once my wife realized that Anne had to be changed, her hormones took control and she turned into a Mini Golf master. She hit a hole-in-one on Hole 17 and finished up her round with a "2" on Hole 18. Those were by far her two best shots, and she did it all while in Mom Overdrive Mode. Her body did whatever it could to get her out of there as quickly as possible. It was amazing!
And for that, I hereby name my wife the Tiger Woods of Mini Golf.
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