A couple of weeks ago, when I first learned about the Golf Digest Index magazine, I joked that I didn’t qualify to get a copy. Golf Digest Index, which focuses on “golf lifestyles” is being sent to Golf Digest’s 300,000 wealthiest subscribers. Public school teachers and high school golf coaches don’t fit in that category.
So imagine my surprise when I came home today to find a copy of Golf Digest Index in my mailbox. I’m still certain that I don’t fit in the wealthy category, but perhaps they sent it to me because of my position as a powerful and influential member of the golf media
Whatever the case, I’m glad they sent it, for it offers a glimpse into a world that—unless I hit the lottery—I don’t have a chance of experiencing.
The initial issue features articles on America’s 50 Greatest Courses, the Concours d’Elegance at Pebble Beach, wine collections at country clubs, the joys of private plane ownership, the spas of St. George, Utah, and man-made caves that serve as golf rooms. That last one is really interesting—it turns out that it may be cheaper to have someone dig you a vast underground playcave than to build a comparable structure above ground. For the most part, though, the articles are not really compelling journalism (but then, I don’t think they were meant to be).
The two exceptions to this were a piece on a con man who fleeced an Ohio Country Club’s membership, and a profile of Herb Kohler. Were either just a little longer, or a little more in depth, they would have been good candidates for Vanity Fair, a magazine whose writing and editing I have very much admired.
The photo spread of Matt Lauer and Bryant Gumbel modeling the latest golf fashions, I could have done without.
Noted author Mark Frost (The Greatest Game) offered his list of required golf reading. I’m going to go out and get some of the ones he suggested.
And the clubmaker in me really enjoyed the piece on Japanese forged clubs.
There also are a lot of nice advertisements to look at—stuff that is not your usual golf tips magazine faire: high end fashions, jewelry and accessories and ritzy resorts. There were bits from Bombaier Flexjet, Bulgari, Cap Cana, The Cliffs, John Allan, Lan River, NASDAQ, Peter Millar, PGA Tour Wines, Porshe, Sentient Jets Wynn and the Waldorf Astoria. (I suppose I’m weird, but I have always enjoyed looking at ads)
All in all, I spent an enjoyable evening thumbing through Golf Digest Index. I hope that they don’t find out how thoroughly middle class I am and stop sending it to me.