To join or not join the country club


The lady on the other end of the line was nice enough.

She was the membership coordinator for the local country club. She was on the line with a guy who had no business joining a country club, either for cost or social stature.

“Hmm … that much, huh?” I asked her, wondering how I could make myself sound like I could afford it and, at the same time, trying to negotiate a better deal.

“Oh, yeah. The initiation fee. That isn’t that much.”

I listened some more,  trying to come up with an exit strategy to this awkward cold call that I had made.

“It all sounds very interesting. I’m going to have to ask my wife. OK, I’ll get back to you.”

I did ask my wife. And that’s where the wheels completely came off.

“You have a health club membership, and you barely go.”

“And what good is this going to do us?”

“We can spend the money on better things. Didn’t you say we had to watch the budget?”

Maybe she was right.

Then, I thought about one of my heroes: Groucho Marx, who once said he would refuse to belong to any country club that would have him as a member.

Groucho was such a wise man.

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