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Weekly e-Gram for members and friends of Dublin Community Church

September 3, 2010

ONE MORE FOR THE ROAD

It never occurred to me that I carry a bit of a time machine with me when I go golfing.

Earlier in the summer, I was playing golf and reached down into the side pocket of the golf bag for a few tees and a ball marker. A ball marker is like a plastic “dime” which you use on the greens to mark your ball if you are in front of another ball.

Anyway, I used the ball marker a few times that day. Forgot to put it back in the bag and emptied my pockets later and the ball marker ended up on my desk and I used it later that summer for a children’s sermon illustration.

Most ball markers have some slogan or advertising on them. You even find political names on them, though why anyone would want to be reminded of politics on the golf course is beyond me. The ball marker which I had that day said on it, “Hey Mabel” Black Label.

For anyone under the age of 40, I imagine they had never heard of the old beer slogan “Hey Mabel” Black Label. Black Label being a beer and Mabel, supposedly the waitress whom was being called and had the unfortunate occurrence of having a name, which rhymed with a beer. I recall finding that ball marker on the golf course when I was a kid. Picked it up. Put it in my golf bag and there it was 5 decades later.

A couple weeks ago, I was at the church golf outing and once again dug in my golf bag for a pencil to keep score. I turned up a “Valley View Golf Course” pencil. I hadn’t played there since the 1990’s. Digging further I found “Hawthorne Hills Golf Course.” Hadn’t played there since the early 70’s.

I know that golf is good for a bit of exercise, developing fellowship and connecting with business contacts for the upwardly mobile career person. But for me, my golf bag contains so many memories that the game is secondary. I still use Dad’s putter, the one that he put a band-aid on to cut the glare off the top of the putter. Remnants of the band-aid are still on that putter 45 years later. I don’t like the feel of the putter but I can’t let it go because of the wonderful memories.

If you are wondering why I was talking to our church kids about beer in the Children’s Message… the answer is that I was talking to them about something “old” and I explained how I had had that golf item since the 1960’s. The slogan “Hey Mabel” Black Label meant as much to them as “Veni, Vedi, Vici” or “I Like Ike.”  Though I have to smile when I think of one of those little kids going to grandma and grandpa’s house later in the day and shouting “Hey Mabel” Black Label.

And then telling Grandma she learned that in church that morning.

Peace, Rev. Bob Tussing

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