The Laws of the Hollow Smile
When Sister Madly arrived at the prearranged place of pints and darts, she was immediately apprehensive at the amount of teeth being displayed. Nobody smiles that much unless they want something.
And oh, the Professors wanted something: they wanted to play golf.
Now, Sister Madly does not play golf. She tried once, and afterwards the green looked as though she had personally detonated a field of land mines. She also had no idea that it was possible for the ball to sail backwards after a forward swing- or straight up at her face. While Sister Madly will gladly dismember every affiliate of the local Stop/Slow Sign Spinners Chapter and weave a trellis out of what’s left of their corpses (she has yet to do so, but if she ever does, it will be done gladly) she will not participate in this method of personal torture without a fight.
Golf. They wanted to play golf. Please say the only reason you want Sister Madly to come along is so that she can drive the cart. She is already entertaining fantasies of ditching you at the farthest possible tee- the least you could do is make this dream come true.
As with all good horror stories, the day dawned gloomy, damp, and shrouded in a fog worthy of Vincent Price. In other words, the perfect weather for contemplating suicide- or homicide, depending on how things go. Seeing as they had wasted 15 minutes of their ever-shortening lives to drive out to the golf course, the Professors decided- with a smile- to take their chances on the driving range.
That is when things started to go wrong. A practice swing by Sister Madly toppled the bucket and sent 300 golf balls scattering willy-nilly (Sister Madly says 300, but they may have only been 40. She did not count them.) This, of course, was followed by the inaugural swing that missed the ball completely, which was followed by the one that sliced the tee in half and sent the ball straight into her shin.
Instead of fast-forwarding to the part where Sister Madly ditches them at the most distant tee before joyriding through the daisies, the Professors smiled through a long dissertation on how golf was, in its own way, a wonderful form of meditation.
Meditation? In your La-La Dreams, chowder-head. Sister Madly knows that inner peace is achieved by exercising machete justice upon unsuspecting rutabagas, and not in a golf swing. Seriously- when was the last time you encountered a Zen Garden with a statue of Buddha teeing off?
The least you can do is concentrate, Sister Madly.
Oh yes, another piece of advice all in vain: concentrating on hitting the ball did absolutely nothing for her swing. But when Sister Madly shifted her focus from her game to the method of revenge she would unleashing upon the smiling Professors later that evening, she began hacking away at the ball with a degree of violence so unnecessary that the Professors actually frowned and called for a time-out.
After a lengthy sit-down, the Professors attempted to show her the proper form for meditating, finishing off with a swing so lovely, it was the inspiration of Poe’s Pendulum.* Sister Madly’s subsequent meditation attempt sent her club sailing off into the driving range and left the Professors wondering how things could go so wrong so fast.
Gee, this is a fun sport!
*He came up with the ‘Pit’ part from watching Sister Madly.
(Un)fortunately, one of the smiling Professors had another club, which was handed over with the strict instructions not to let go this time. After yet another round of ill-received advice, it was decided that the best way for Sister Madly to learn how to meditate was in her own gentle, self-destructive way. It wasn’t long before her tantrums settled down, which led the Professors to believe that she might actually be enjoying herself- until they realized that Sister Madly was just throwing the balls out into the driving range, for the sooner that bucket was empty, the sooner she could realize her dream of ditching those smiles at the farthest tee.
Sister Madly, you see, does not consider herself bound by the rules of fair play.
Nor by the Laws of the Hollow Smile.
POST’S THEME SONG: It Don’t Mean a Thing (If It Ain’t Got That Swing), Ella Fitzgerald