Team Wis cheering 2010

The relationship part of your professional career is something often underestimated in terms of value. You never know when someone you encountered or worked with will be in a position later in life to offer you an opportunity. Every one of my freelance writing clients came from some level of previous relationship.

Sometimes, however, just having the camaraderie of a support group is as enjoyable as a close circle of friends… at least for a day.

Such is the case with the annual reconvening of media-types for the Writers Cup golf tournament. This gathering of Wisconsin and Illinois-based members of the media is one of the highlights of the fall for me. Structured along the same lines as the Ryder Cup, a dozen guys from each state meet at a different golf course each year for a day-long series of matches to determine the champion of the world.

The fifteenth edition of the Writers Cup took place this year the day after the real Ryder Cup. The host site was the magnificent The Bull at Pinehurst Farms golf course in Sheboygan Falls, Wisconsin. Designed by Jack Nicklaus, The Bull ranks as one of the top courses in Wisconsin. Death and destruction lurk with every missed shot.

We were fortunate to score a postcard-perfect fall day, warm enough for shorts and short-sleeved shirts. That does not happen very often in Wisconsin in October. Team Wisconsin wears red and Team Illinois wears blue, and the captains make an attempt to match up guys roughly by ability level.

Team Illinois had retained the prestigious trophy the past four years, but on this day Team Wisconsin administered a beat down of historic proportions, 18.5 points to 5.5 points. (A match win is worth 1 point and a tie is worth a half-point.)

Many of us typically end up playing against the same guys every year in one combination or another because of the need to match up by playing ability level. That gives us the opportunity to catch up on each other’s lives and talk a little smack. It is truly a fun experience that I look forward to every year.

After the matches, the teams get together for dinner and a few adult beverages before hitting the road and returning to our real lives. For a day, we get to act like kids and do something completely unproductive for our careers … or was it?

Posted by Mike Dauplaise on October 12, 2010 at 6:18 PM under