The Pro Shop in Maple Valley is a continuous story, a smell, a rhythm, a noise, a different quality of air, a hobby, a pastime, a religion. The pro shop is city workers and social outcasts, used golf balls, broken tees, cigarette butts, French fries, and afternoon alcohol. The people who come there, as one golfer said, “are those that work, those who can’t work, and those who should be working.” But he could have just as easily described them as hippies, drunks, bums, and fools and everybody else.
Before the red sun rises above the checkered fairways, the maintenance workers can be seen, moving like shadows by the shop, trimming greens, blowing dust, and disposing of forgotten things. Then a steady stream of humanity arrives. Hispanic men in their kitchen uniforms and their tired women wearing dresses, stretched to the seams, with cigarette smoke billowing behind them. Retired men who used to be lawyers, judges, and professional sons-of-bitches push their carts in a steady line like ants moving towards the first hole. When the head pro finally arrives, he turns the key in the lock, and the heart-beat of the golf course pumps like a rhythmic rhyme.