On golf carts and man buns

Savannah Morning News

Nov. 12, 2017

Forget Aquarius. This is age of golf carts (on streets), man buns (on men), mullets (universal). Raise your hand if you like any of those three? Mine is not raised. How do these trends start?

Golf carts belong on the golf course. They don’t even belong there. People should walk –  except when golf courses intersect with houses, gated communities, neighborhoods with extended garages and bike paths. It must start when your neighbor gets a tricked out golf cart (kind of like barbecue grills), and you think, “Hey, that looks like fun.” Overnight, it’s the invasion of the golf carts. Not lit. Not licensed. Party-mobiles.

Golf carts belong up there with tennis shoes.

Nice shoes,” I said to a stranger while waiting for the traffic light to change.

“Thanks,” she said. “I love new tennis shoes.”

“Oh,” I said, always looking for people to play tennis with. “Where do you play?”

“Oh, I don’t play tennis,” she said. “Never have. I just call them that.”

She might just as well have called them “gym shoes,” another common term (back when there was gym class), and I could have related.

Golf carts, tennis shoes, rotary phones. All the same.

“If you have a rotary phone please stay on the line,” says the automated message from the public library.

Rotary phones are right there with encyclopedias, phone books and channels.

“What channel is it on?” we used to ask about a certain television program when there were four or five clear choices.

Soon we’ll be adding man buns to that list.

“Mommy, what’s a man bun?”

Man buns started with men who have thinning hair or receding hairlines – or maybe (not to be too cynical) with hairdressers looking to increase their clientele. The result is strangely architectural and interesting. I find myself staring at them, thinking of the time and money spent on getting the parallel lines just so. Only they don’t see me staring. They see an older woman looking at them. We don’t count. You gotta hand it to these metrosexuals: they want to have fun with their body, too. They already have their cross body man bags and their man caves; they might as well have an expensive man bun to match.

Mullets? Toss ‘em to the fish.

In the whole scheme of messy things in the world none of the above much matters, does it? Just commerce as usual.

But the cost of chocolate: now there’s something to complain about. A regular Kit Kat, the treat you would snag at 10 a.m. when you got gas (standing behind someone buying lottery tickets) and you were up for hours, that little click sweetie that used to cost 50 cents? Now it’s up to $1.75.

But who can eat candy after Halloween anyway? Not me. That’s too bad because there’s so much around, especially since my new favorite four-year-old – a power ranger, don’t you know, in mind and costume – left over a bunch of stuff even though he carefully announced (with me translating) in his sweet little voice to everyone handing out candy: “Do they have peanuts? I’m allergic to peanuts.”

Except for the drive-by parents in cars, hovering in the middle of the street at the end of the night while their teens got what they could, it was a great Halloween. Plenty of animal masks. Plenty of power folk heroes, a multitude of TV/comic book/video characters I never heard of and no politicians although I did read about a certain woman who was running for president who dressed up as … president.

Best of all, though no one gives out fruit (“yuk”) or nickels: (“Daddy, what’s this?”), many of the costumed children who showed up at our Parkside house were heard to say, “Thank you.” You can’t beat that.  If they didn’t say, “Thank you,” the aforementioned power ranger four-year-old, who is allergic to peanuts and trained and mannered, was heard to query, “What do you say?”

The morning after, squashed mini candy bars littered the sidewalk and the seventh game of the World Series ended the way it should have – in Houston’s favor. I’d like to think it was Jose Altuve, the five-foot-six-inch second baseman from Venezuela (“although he’s probably five-feet-five,” one of the broadcasters – maybe Joe Buck – said) who brought it home.

I never heard such said I about such a short ballplayer. But no man bun for Jose Altuve. No mullet, either.