The Missing Golf Shoe

In January 2010 the course was closed for a considerable time because of a heavy fall of snow.

Rather like lockdown conditions, Wags became bored and restless, craving their fix of golf  to satify their addiction.

An exchange of emails at the time between several Wags, written in desperation, was published on the Wags website and has again come to light.

It might just be that you could do with a little light relief. If so, please read on and if you have a mind to, drop us a line by clicking here to add further comments by way of updating this article.

So here it is:

Here is an exchange of emails between some Wags, all becoming somewhat bored with the inactivity imposed by the snow.  OK, so it may be banal, but it’s preferable to arguing with the wife!

Subject: Excitement, or what?
From: Paul Messenger <paulmessenger@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Fri, 8 Jan 2010 13:05:15 +0000
To: Garry Glover <gwglover@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>

Dear Garry,

The excitement is all too much.  I thought I should share this with you.  It’s quite long, but really riveting reading.

My Morning. By Paul Messenger, age 67.

The ideal footwear for walking on pavements that have become treacherous with compacted snow is golf shoes with metal spikes. The downside is that when one arrives at the shopping area where there is no snow, it becomes necessary to change into more appropriate shoes.  My son has about a mile and a half to walk to the station and finds my golf shoes ideal (which he has commandeered for the duration of the white-out), and can walk almost as quickly as in dry conditions. I have an old pair of golf shoes in the garage and because we could do with a few provisions, and as I cannot get my car out, I decided to take my old shoes out of retirement and go shopping.

My garage is not the neat and tidy place that some people would expect me to have and has become a repository for sundry bits and pieces that might come in handy some day, such as old golf shoes kept for snowy days. I knew exactly where they were located and, standing on a kitchen chair, I reached up to the long shelf on which they have been safely asleep for five years.  Fifteen old golf clubs, two golf bags, three rolls of wallpaper that might be required should we have an accident and I need to replace a strip or two, 4 raffia mats for the beach, one inflatable rubber ring for playing in the sea, a large bucket and two spades (children’s), a frisby, three plastic dust sheets, two neatly folded golf tops, a fleece, a battery charger, two cartons complete with moulded polystyrene cradles, kept in case the products purchased some years ago proved to be faulty and have to be returned, a plunger for blocked drains, a brace and bit, an oil can and one golf shoe.   And that was just one shelf.  I shall bore you no further with the treasures I discovered on the other two shelves, but needless to say, no more golf shoes.  The positive thing though, making it all worthwhile, was that in looking between the tumble drier and the wall, I discovered that the flexible exhaust tube was no longer connected to the vent in the wall, but just dangled freely ready to puff out into the garage another lot of whatever comes out of a tumble drier’s exhaust. I then explored every other nook and cranny without the hint of a golf shoe.

How can a golf shoe disappear?  One throws away a pair of shoes, not a single shoe. I am certain that if I throw away the one shoe I have found, next week the other shoe will turn up in the attic. I am now torn.  Shall I hop to the shops in my one golf shoe, wear normal shoes and risk life and limb (Simon’s girlfriend’s mother ended up in hospital yesterday after slipping on snow, with two broken bones in her leg requiring surgery), or shall I relax in my armchair and contemplate this previously unencountered phenomenon of one lost golf shoe?  The latter sounds good to me.

Beat that for an exciting morning.


P.S. If you know any one-legged golfers please let me know. Its a size 9 for the left foot.

Subject: Excitement, or what?
From: Garry Glover <gwglover@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Fri, 8 Jan 2010 14:52:47 -0000
To: Paul Messenger <paulmessenger@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>

Dear Paul,

I would suggest that this be published on the Wags website. It was addressed to me and I would like to proffer it for a publication, so you will then have to ask your bolshie web-master whether or not is acceptable. I can see no reason why it should not be permitted, it is not racist, pornographic, misogynistic, political or xenophobic; it is just bloody hilarious. I urge you not to waste your talents on one recipient alone. I have read nothing funnier in all the column inches over these past few days.

My days are less enjoyable as I sit reading, filing, trying to sort out my pension fund earning 0.1%, looking out of the window at the snow and the poor birds. I have walked around the street several times and passed perhaps 10 minutes chatting with neighbours whom I rarely ever pass the time of day with. It can be very trying being together all the time at home and it would be instructive to know what level of domestic violence occurs during such a spell and what the birth rate is 9 months later. It would be an interesting exercise to do as a prospective and retrospective study.

I feel so stimulated by your article for publication that I shall search for a pair of golf shoes, although I am sure my 2 spare pairs are in my locker and the other pair I use for gardening and the soft spikes are worn down. So here we go, if I should break a leg as I head to Ruislip Lido, it will be your responsibility.


PS Please submit the email addressed to me for publication.

OK smarty pants. What are YOU doing that’s so interesting?  Answers by email to

From: Michael Murphy


I suspect your missing shoe is with my missing table leg.  I keep in my garage (aka the utility room – any car manufactured after the war is too large to enter) a spare table.  It is about the size of a card table but is handy when the family descends on us for Christmas, funerals and other similar celebrations.  This year when preparing the christmas dinner table on the eve of the great day all I could find was the table top and three legs.  I’m still wondering how one could lose one leg of a table.  Any suggestions?  I shall not expand any more on the issue as I’m quite bored of it now.

Incidentally, we have no snow here in Lagos (Algarve not Nigeria) but its still very cold and exceptional.  My golf is so poor my only pleasure is reading the club website saying Sandy Lodge course is closed and watching the weather forecast saying it won’t improve!

I suggest you ask the Wags what other activity could be undertaken by the group as a whole on Wednesday mornings such as we are experiencing.  Has any member got a Wi that could be used for golf competitions?

Less actively, if we combined the entire intellect of the group might we manage the Telegraph crossword?   Ok being more realistic we might answer the question on ITV that asks something like, what is the opening line of our national anthem, “God save our gracious……..

  1. a) parking space
  2. b) lotto numbers
  3. c) Queen.

Must leave you now as my dinner needs cooking and Linda is at squash.


From: Denis Palmer

My goodness! I never thought life could be soooo exciting.

Your other golf shoe is with my golf mittens that have always been kept on the top shelf in the wardrobe and will be useful next year when we have a real government that makes the snow melt.  Until then, I can get quite excited at a request to go out a buy a cabbage for tonight’s dinner!  It will make a change from reading, eating, sleeping, more eating, some art, more eating and sleeping, noting that there is bugger-all on the box, apart from shouting at the news of idiots getting stuck all over the place and blaming everyone else, etc. etc.

My hibernating hedgehog is enjoying a more fruitful life at the moment!

Imagine my delight when Dawn asked me to drive her to the hairdressers tomorrow!  Wow, how exciting!  I could go up to the Club to see if it’s still there! I could have a coffee with the locals who have gone up to the Club to see if it’s still there! In the end, Dawn decided that she wouldn’t bother – I’ve never been so disappointed!

I think I’ll look on the top shelf in the garage for my mittens. Send more laughs soon – and thanks for bringing the chuckles back into my life. Denis

From: Tony

You’ve got a lot to answer Paul – “the little lady” saw your e-mail and I have had to go to B&Q and get some bloody wallpaper and paint to re-do the bedroom !!


From: Anon

I was reading the woes of the Wags unable to play golf.  DIY did not seem to enter into your thoughts!!!  How have you escaped the demands of your wives not to fix this or that problem?  Me, I have been a goody goody and have been giving H……. lessons on how to work her new computer (she even wants her own e-mail address so I cannot read any of her e-mails in future!!!! The cheek of it!!!).  Brownie points for when the snow thaws and I can get out on the golf course!!!!!


From: Brian Shorey

Garry Paul
Having read your e-mails to each other it is my belief that you both need treatment for your mental problems which I feel is due to addiction to golf.Therefor I must recommend some treatment for both of you. In most cases of addiction the recommended treatment is an alternative drug or stimulus. It is thus that my advice is you go to the below web site and see if it is able to help with your problems.


From: Garry Glover

Dear Brian,

Honestly, do you really think I have nothing better to do than spend my time playing a puerile childish game of so-called golf with a putter and a mouse. I feel quite insulted.

By the way, can anyone beat 57?


From: Simon Brown

Dear Paul,

I think I may have found the answer to your golf shoe problem – see below.


The End


Holmes sat at his desk. He twirled the meerschaum idly in his fingers, the scent of last night’s shag clung about him. Why did the Victorians name their tobacco after the act of sexual intercourse, he pondered.

The year had not been a good one. The detective business was slow to the point of ennui.     [note: the web page is entitled “Ennui”]

But he had one matter occupying his mind: the strange Case of the Golf Shoe in the Garage.   It was a singular case indeed: one golf shoe only in the garage of Holmes’s client, the other eluding all attempts to find it. What could it mean?

The client also intrigued Holmes. He was one Mr Paul Messenger of the WAGS, a golfing society of the highest repute. Messenger was an impressive man and Holmes, had he been of a more worldly disposition, would have admired him immensely. Messenger’s way with the fair sex was legendary, his ample head of hair (which Holmes had observed curiously never seemed to grow longer or be cut) was the envy of his follicly challenged colleagues and his unrivalled range of golfing jumpers made him instantly recognisable a tee shot away. Holmes made a mental note to inquire the name of his client’s tricoteuse and reflected that it was only Messenger’s flamboyant insistence on teeing off with a vintage putter which prevented his golf from matching his other undoubted talents. 

But how to solve the Case of the Golf Shoe in the Garage?

Holmes reviewed the facts.   The shoe in question was of an antique but sought after type with metal studs. The garage had been thoroughly searched and revealed no second shoe.

Holmes recalled the Case of the Two Golf Gloves in which the dastardly Moriarty had sought to pass himself off as a member of the WAGS but (being unfamiliar with the rules and etiquette of the game) had made the fatal error  of wearing two golf gloves each of a different hue (Jeff had had a special offer on). He had quickly been unmasked and a glancing blow from Graham Robertson’s languidly swung 4 iron on the 14th had put a swift end to his prospects.

Could there be any connection, he wondered?

It would be a three-pipe problem…

Many solutions presented themselves: perhaps Messenger’s better half had, unbeknown to him, taken up the game. She, perhaps assuming that, as with gloves, only one shoe was worn in the game of golf, might have taken the shoe with which to practise. But that made no sense. After all, Messenger had that very day told him his wife was right-handed but it was the right shoe which was missing.

The next day an article in the Morning Chronicle caught Holmes’s eye.

Of course! How often had he told his nice but dim accomplice, Watson, that “When the impossible is eliminated, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth”.

DANISH GANG STEALS ONLY RIGHT-HANDED SHOES blared the headline. He read on: “A criminal gang operating in Denmark stealing shoes from shop display cases is now operating throughout the non Scandinavian countries of Europe stealing only right shoes. Your correspondent understands that for historic reasons (connected with the ancient rights of Mermaids and Merpersons of all persuasions) Denmark permits only left shoes to be displayed in shop windows thus making it necessary for the gang to steal right shoes from elsewhere to make up pairs. The gang has been spotted in England and Scotland Yard has received a tip-off that the thieves are now targeting sporting shoes of all kinds including (and the word leapt off the page as Holmes read)  studded  golf shoes…

Had Messenger not told Holmes that he employed a Danish woman about the house for certain personal (“secretarial” he called it) services?


Cherchez la Femme – Trouvez la Chaussure.


For further reading:

The Adventure of James Graham’s Missing Guttie Ball

The Case of The Par Four Dog-leg

With thanks to Simon Brown

Update 14 November 2020

An email sent to several Wags following an admission by the Wags Treasurer that his dog Bobbie is a thief!

What an admission from Adrian P about his delinquent dog Bobby, a thief through no fault of the poor dog, being trained in criminal activities like his predecessor Pippin.  His master is to blame of course.
Adrian has answered two questions that have troubled me for nearly 11 years: 1. Where did my missing golf shoe go – it has never reappeared and Pippin is the obvious suspect. 2. Why did Adrian not get involved in the ensuing email exchange (or if he did it was signed “anon”) when he is never backward in commenting on such things? – guilty conscience.
I am attaching the report which was circulated in January 2010 and if boredom has set in, as it did during the white-out of 2010, take a look. 11 years older and the humour hasn’t changed one bit.


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