I will admit readily that I am not the easiest person to go golf with. I get far too frustrated and irrational (more so than usual) to really be fun to play with. But my poor husband endures this because he really loves the game (and me).

Yesterday’s game was no exception. Although I got to choose the course and the tee time, and the weather conditions were all within my requirements, I had no trouble putting on my cranky pants and acting like a high caliber jerk.

I got plenty of time to warm up. I found that for dealing with the initial jitters of being the only woman on the course (again!) was mitigated by the use of a few new motivated songs I downloaded to my iPod and the noise cancelling earphones. I was feeling good.

Then I teed off. The first few holes went well. I ended up with three pars for the day, which isn’t something to sneeze at (or say god bless you, if you’re following protocol). But as the day wore on, I became grumpier. Compliments became accusations of insincerity. My usual self deprecating humor became a visceral display of unfettered self loathing and criticism. Eventually, even I couldn’t stand myself.

Still, I noticed how nice other players were to me. Thankfully we weren’t paired up this round, so I didn’t have to worry about irritating other players. But because the course was busy, there were plenty of opportunities for others to see me fail.

As my second shot banked off the tree and into the water on 17, I heard two players behind me verbalize my reaction before even I could muster it. I knew then I wasn’t alone, and that people were actually rooting for me to succeed.

At that point, even though it was late in the game, I decided to have a better attitude. Or at least commit to work on it. Because they caught up to us in the parking lot, and told me that one of them did the exact same thing when it was their turn.