No wonder we lost the war," the Japanese man said as I wore out the dimples on my ball with a 290-yard drive on the 18th hole....
Wait. Wait. Let's start at the beginning. What is this about you trying to salt your omelet with the cigarette lighter?
You don't want to hear about the drive?
Well, yes, that's true. I did try to salt my omelet with the cigarette lighter. But that was only because I had taken too much oxygen.
Hold on. Where was this?
This was at Koganei in Tokyo, the most expensive country club in the world. It takes about $2.5 million to join and even that might not do it; two years ago, a businessman reportedly made an offer of $3.57 million to join and was given the big raspberry. I mean, a divot at this place might go for $63. And not only do you have to cough up the 2.5 mil, but also there are the yearly dues. Of course, tees are free.
So you were having breakfast at Koganei....
Right. I'm having breakfast at Koganei, having talked my way into a big match on the Fourth of July in the most elite country club in the new money center of the universe, Tokyo. And I'm sort of on a mission. I mean, the Japanese are beating the microchip out of us these days, right? Did you know that nearly all the fax-machine makers in the world are Japanese? Did you know six of the 10 richest men in the world are Japanese and only one is American?
But I don't mind that so much, and I don't mind their buying so many great American golf courses, such as Riviera and La Costa. But when I heard a rumor that the Japanese had made an offer to buy Pebble Beach lock, stock and bunker, that really fried my sand wedge. I mean, can you imagine Pebble Beach for sale? That's like selling Mount Rushmore.