(27 January 2014) - Dalliance with a global icon.
The invitation to spend an evening with a global icon, borne from the endeavours of an entrepreneurial Lancashire lad, is not an opportunity to pass up lightly.
She was chaperoned into town to launch the Ryder Cup Exhibition at the Smith Art Gallery and Museum, where all the great and the good of Stirling convened for a brief, memorable evening to marvel at her beauty, style and elegance. Most attendees were government officials, captains of industry, elected parliamentarians and she loved it. The attention. The glamour. The occasion.
Strategically positioned in one corner of the exhibition concourse, shining like a star, it is easy to comprehend why talented men duel with sticks for her bi-annual affections either side of the pond. Her beauty had all transfixed.
Being a fellow Northerner, I thought there might be a slight chance of one-to-one face time at some point in the evening. And thankfully, I was not disappointed. She gave her time generously to all in attendance, although we were instructed to look, but not to touch.
As the evening progressed, I edged forward to her inner circle, hoping to catch her eye. She was busy soaking up the limelight, being photographed with many other well-groomed and event-seasoned gentlemen. However, my flower was going to be taken. This was the moment of my first ever dalliance with a truly global icon. I was celebrity-struck.
Palms sweating, my turn came. Thoughts entered my head. “Don’t trip over”. “Don’t lift her up”. “Don’t stroke her behind”. “Be cool”.
As I eased into the inner sanctum, I nodded to her and moved to her side. Heart pumping, those few seconds seemed like an eternity. Men would die to get this near to her, and here I was living the moment.
Then the instruction came to get in close, smile, and puff out the chest. I gently placed my arm around her. She never moved. I swear I saw a glint in her eye that meant, “it’s ok kid”.
Then it was all over.
I was cast off like a cheap date who couldn’t afford the cab home. It wasn’t her. It was her people. She had to spend time with all the men. But they didn’t know her, or admire her, from afar like I did. They just wanted her in a - go to bed with Gilda but wake up with me – conquest kind of way, and the memory for the reception wall. A prize trophy.
But she is much more than that. She is truely iconic.
So much so that as this southpaw rookie to the sport is thinking about giving it a go. Once considered the waste of a good walk, I can now understand why men torture themselves to attain perfection. It’s only perfection and dedication to the cause that allows the selected few to get near her for any length of time.
As time rolls on towards September when she returns, I’ll be just into my 45th year. Is there one last chance to get into the networking circles of the sport, for our paths to cross again?
I can but hope and I can but pray.
One thing is for sure, from this day forth, whenever I see her deservedly taking all the limelight wherever she jetsets around the world, I will always remember my last and only words to her, “Here’s looking at you kid, we’ll always have Stirling”.
A dalliance with a global icon.