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« Second Instant Poll: Would Two Sets Of Rules Make Golf Less Appealing? | Main | Buried Lede In The Anchoring Ban Announcement? »

In Wake Of MJ Incident, Governing Bodies Need To Look At Courses That Actually Enforce Cargo Short Ban

Anchoring, schmanchoring.

The game is doomed if we keep kicking people away for wearing...gasp...shorts with pockets on the outside!

After reading ESPN Chicago's follow up to the much tweeted story about Michael Jordan's ill-fated from Miami's La Gorce CC, there is no better evidence for golf's image issues and overall neuroses than this...

"I've been there many times and no one told me a thing," Jordan told ESPN Chicago by text. "Then all of a sudden they come to me on the 11th hole and say I can't wear cargo shorts. Wow! The round is almost over and you want me to buy shorts now? Yeah, right!!"

A spokesman from La Gorce Country Club said their president was on vacation and declined comment at this time. An employee in the pro shop said that required attire is: "a collared shirt and golf shorts or pants, no cargo or denim. If there are pockets on the outside, it's not allowed."

Because people hide their knives and wads of tip money in those outside pockets, never on the inside!

It's not that we're doomed by the no cargo shorts rule, it's that this is not unusual at a country club to send some poor employee out to bother a Hall of Famer mid-round and tell him to get "proper" shorts or leave. Embarrassing.

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Reader Comments (50)

People still wear cargo shorts?
11.29.2012 | Unregistered CommenterTorr Eckman
Would they treat Larry Bird this way? Just asking...
11.29.2012 | Unregistered CommenterAmen Coroner
Anyone over the age of 14 shouldn't own, let alone wear Cargo shorts. Especially to a golf course. Have a little pride in your attire.
11.29.2012 | Unregistered CommenterLeeWatson
What's the matter with wearing cargo shorts? How is that not having pride in your attire? It's golf, not tea with the Queen
11.29.2012 | Unregistered CommenterGus
Lee and any othersnobs out there... why is it your job to impose or tell anyone what another chooses to wear to play a game outdoors as long as they are wearing a collared shirt? If he was wearing a wife beater and cargos to the WH State Dinner then fine. Decorum dictates a dress code there at an indoor black tie function, but to play golf does it really matter if his bermuda length shorts have a flat front, single or double pleat, or a couple extra pockets down by hos thighs? I mean seriously who gives a flying fart about this other than people who think they are better and know more?!
11.29.2012 | Unregistered CommenterAmen Coroner
Fascist fashion police will always find a place in Golf unfortunately.

Would that golf course refuse to let Langer play in his cargo pocketed pants that he was sporting the past few seasons?
11.29.2012 | Unregistered Commenterjohnnnycz
What Amen Coroner asked.
11.29.2012 | Registered CommenterGeoff
Whatever your thoughts about dress code etc, why is the fact he is a Hall of Famer relevant?
if the rules are there (whether they are stupid or not) thye should be applied equally to everyone, regardless of race, gender or sporting prowess.

I remember having to tee off 10 minutes late (at 7am) because James Worthy was late for his tee-time.
I am sure the group behind me would not have had to wait if I was late.
For all I know James Worthy might have been happy for us to tee off in front of him but as long as people change the rules for "stars" their attitude to life will never change.
11.29.2012 | Unregistered CommenterStiggy
If this was so important, what they should have done was come to him with ready shorts in hand and a way to have him switch into them. That or requested to speak to him after his round to remind of the dress policy and how next time it would be tolerated. You don't screw someones round up like this.

I actually disagree with Amen Coroner. If there's a dress policy and it's well published ... then you should respect it. If you don't like it then you can raise it and address it with the club to have it changed. Until that happens, respect the club's dress policy.

The big problem however appears to have been inconsistency. If MJ had cargos before and nothing was said, but now it's an issue ... then that's the club's damn fault.
11.29.2012 | Unregistered CommenterPHK
Well yes, the rules SHOULD be different for people such as Michael Jordan. Anyone remember Phil Collins being denied entrance into a Chicago restaurant because they didn't like his jacket? The egg was on the face of the restaurant because the understanding was--gee, that was Phil freaking Collins for crying out loud. Let the man in your restaurant. Now we cry fowl over such things. Heck, to me, the whole point of being rich is so you can bypass all of these stupid petty rules we shouldn't have to suffer with.

11.29.2012 | Unregistered CommenterLRH
I'm all for a dress code at a golf course, and I don't have any strong opinions on cargo shorts either way; however knowing that some clubs don't allow them i don't wear them (plus - they're cargo shorts...) . But surely if you've made it past the starter, past the pro shop and through ten holes then surely a "for future Reference" would have more than sufficed.

Have to wonder whether this is La Gorce's way of trying to become "the club that's so exclusive MJ got banned"
11.29.2012 | Unregistered CommenterMark
I hereby adopt the views espoused in Mark's comment above.
11.29.2012 | Unregistered CommenterGary
It's this type of snobbery and elitism that makes me want to give the damned game up at times. And they wonder why fewer and fewer people play. Most ridiculous thing I've ever heard.
11.29.2012 | Unregistered CommenterPrut
Try wearing cargo shorts at LACC and live to tell about it !
The 11th hole????

Give me a break. They could have handled it much differently.

Some people can't even spell "flexibility".
11.29.2012 | Unregistered CommenterStanley Thompson
MJ has been to enough nice clubs to know that cargo shorts don't fly at the finer places. Frankly, MJ is just a dumb guy with a bad attitude and that's why he couldn't get into any of the good private clubs in Charlotte. Having said that, the member who let him do it shoulders a bigger part of the blame, clearly a jock sniffer that was afraid to tell MJ that his shorts wouldn't do.

GoPM, bingo on LACC!!
11.29.2012 | Unregistered CommenterDTF
I've lived this!! Here's my bet (which is also nearly identical to what happened to me). MJ is out there doing his thing, nobody is bothered. Member A-H shows up, sees someone's shirt isn't tucked all the way in. "I want you to go tell him that he must immediately tuck in his shirt". Awesome, super great, can't wait, this sounds like exactly what I want to do. Here's a thought: why don't you tell him if it's so important, aren't you a rich, successful, take charge kinda guy? But you're right, I should do it because you said so.

It'll go down 1 of 2 ways. MJ (in this example) will know that staff is caught in a bad spot because he sees member A-H. (True story - in my example the 2 were 75 feet apart on the driving range) MJ is cool about it with staff and knows that Member A-H has some issues. The other way is less fun, MJ basically tells staff to cork screw himself and now it becomes a nice little tiff between 2 rich people, with the $10 /hr guy getting most of the bullets.

Like I said, been there, it's BS.
11.29.2012 | Unregistered CommenterNC Phyllis
Phyllis, problem with your thesis is MJ already knew the rule....just thought he was above it.
11.29.2012 | Unregistered CommenterDTF
@DTF You may be right, and I don't know him (ha), and it's not beyond belief that a super star would believe different rules exist for them. .

Or it may have been one of the rules "on the books" that are seldom/never enforced unless someone wants to prove a point. (dress code gray areas, cart exit posts, changing into golf shoes in the parking lot, etc.)
11.29.2012 | Unregistered CommenterNC Phyllis
Cargo owners/wearers, what exactly do you need all those extra puffy pockets for? What are you hiding?
11.29.2012 | Unregistered CommenterLeeWatson

When you get rid of the pleats you have to do something with the leftover material. Do you wipe your boogers in your pleats or do they have another use?

I wear all sorts of stuff that wouldn't fly at Pantiesinawad CC. But, of course, I'll never be found there either. Cue Groucho Marx.
11.29.2012 | Unregistered CommenterSeán O'Nuallain
Lucky he wasn't in Australia - they would have got him for sock code violations as well!
11.29.2012 | Unregistered CommenterKangy Boy
DTF--frankly, I think MJ & people like him **should be** above the rules somewhat. I'm sorry, but to me, once you do all you do to climb to such a status, I think you should be able to maneuver around such petty nonsense such as this. That he is Michael Jordan vs just an ordinary person matters--otherwise, we wouldn't even be talking about this at all to start with. You think that if you or I get thrown out of a golf resort anyone cares? Of course not. Because it's MJ they care. That right there tells you that status means something.

And as far as I'm concerned, MJ ought to be able to go into a golf resort dressed as the Oscar Meyer weinermobile if he wants to. You get to be Michael Jordan, or Larry Bird, or Jerry West etc, that comes with the territory if you ask me. At least it traditionally has. I guess we're changing in that way, & I don't know that I care for it, because I've always said if I ever got rich that would be the #1 thing I'd like the most about it, having the influence to be above such petty rules.

11.29.2012 | Unregistered CommenterLRH
LRH - i suppose I have always felt that I am as important as anyone else, and no more important than anyone else.
Because a guy can throw a ball in a hoop better than me; or because I have been more successful than someone else, doesn't matter to me.
I have always felt we have the same rights.
Each to their own I suppose.
11.29.2012 | Unregistered CommenterStiggy
(Stiggly) As a general rule, yes, we all have the same rights. But influential people have always been able to skirt certain things such as this by virtue of their position, & we've happily gone along with this. It's fine that we don't want them to get away with murder or stealing etc, but when we start taking it this seriously, it's getting a little carried away.

I keep coming back to the Phil Collins story in the early 80s. The Rompus Room in Chicago IL wouldn't let him in because his jacket, to their view, wasn't up to par. It angered Phi Collins, who was typically a very easy-going sort of person. He talked about it on Johnny Carson & the such. This is the thing--when he did so, people weren't going "oh great, another spoiled rich brat thinking he's above the rules." Instead they agreed with him, & the restaurant had a huge egg on their face about it. They apologized to him and even mailed him a complimentary jacket for future visits. I mean come on--it's Phil freaking Collins, & you're going to deny him entrance over a jacket?

I know things change over time, but that change--where we go from that to calling someone like him "a jerk who thinks he's above the rules" is a change I don't like. I mean, what's the fun in becoming rich & influential if you have to drudge behind all of the nonsense like this? Half the reason, I think, to become rich is for the very purpose of being able to circumvent such nonsense.

11.29.2012 | Unregistered CommenterLRH
LRH - obviously we have different opinions. It isnt that relevant to me - I will never be that rich and even if was I would take no fun in throwing it in people's faces.
11.29.2012 | Unregistered CommenterStiggy
Most golfers don't have a clue about dress codes or how to properly dress as a guest at club. Or at a public course for that matter.
Jordan knows better. The ignorant masses don't.
11.29.2012 | Unregistered Commenterredneck
"And as far as I'm concerned, MJ ought to be able to go into a golf resort dressed as the Oscar Meyer weinermobile if he wants to. "

I guess I just don't understand why having lots of money entitles you to break rules others have to follow.
11.29.2012 | Unregistered CommenterBobby D
Bobby D, monied smart people understand and live by exactly what you are saying. Monied dummies feel entitled to break rules.
11.29.2012 | Unregistered CommenterDTF
(Bobby D) That's just it, you don't understand. You can't explain it, you just have to understand it. The whole POINT of being rich is for the purpose of circumventing the nonsense the masses have to tolerate. I understand that human life itself is equally important, I argue that all the time when news articles say "8 people died, 5 of them children." My reply--the 5 children who died isn't more of a tragedy than the 3 adults. Naturally people argue "it is, children are innocent" & "they haven't had a chance to really live." My reply--maybe, but that doesn't make their deaths more tragic nor are they more IMPORTANT.

But yes--to me, it's just common sense, if Michael Jordan, Shaquille O'Neal, Michael Phelps, Warren Buffet or Steven Tyler (Aerosmith) walk into a place, it's the most natural thing in the world to give them special treatment, and for them to EXPECT it. They're more noteworthy--not more important, but more noteworthy. Otherwise, why are we even talking about them in the first place? After all, if you or I were banned from a golf resort, no one would care. If MJ truly is no more important than we are, then why are we reporting on him like he's special?

It's like I said too--as for me, I don't sit around all day wishing I was rich so I could buy a BMW or the Biltmore Estate, but I can tell you, if I were to hit it rich, I would just LOVE to be able to shimmy around some of the silly rules imposed on us as a society. That's the whole point--a lot of these rules, and I would consider this rule to be one, are just stupid, but most of us aren't in a position to challenge them. Michael Jordan is, & I applaud him doing just that. And heck, even if it were just me, you better believe I'd find it silly that they're bothering me on the 12th hold about something so stupid, something they had always been okay with me doing dozens of times before.

That's the point to me--obviously we live in a society not an anarchy, but they really do seem to come up with some stupid & ascinine rules in a lot of areas of life, and they don't have the common sense to judge context & circumstances with enforcement. A good example--a few years ago I was at a lake that didn't allow dogs, leashed or otherwise. I was there with one other person, & they had brought their dog, apparently not knowing. The dog was very well behaved & I had no problems with it bothering me any at all. The lake warden zoomed to her & ordered her to leave now or else, basically. It seemed silly to me: she & I were the only ones there, the dog was well-behaved, & he could've responded in some other way such as letting her stay or clarifying what the rule was for NEXT time, rather than going off on his power trip.

That very sort of insanity--you better believe, if i was rich, it would be practically my mission in life to oppose it every chance I could. People could hate on me for being a self-centered rich pompous jerk, I could care less.

11.29.2012 | Unregistered CommenterLRH

Is that you Stewie Rah Rah?
11.29.2012 | Unregistered CommenterDTF
DTF, Manos is back in town!!!
11.29.2012 | Unregistered CommenterStiggy
Steven Tyler? lol!
11.29.2012 | Unregistered CommenterBobby D
I have quite a few friends with big money. None of them act like Michael Jordan.
11.29.2012 | Unregistered CommenterBobby D
Back in the day, The Cloister, Addison Mizner version, wouldn't let Jackie Gleason in the dining room without a tie, or that was the coastal legend. He huffed and puffed but they told him to take it back to Miami Beach as James and Gloria Stewart walked right through the door properly dressed. They would probably take The Great One's money today and look the other way...Still, money can't buy class. But it can buy an awesome combover.

That's "couldn't" care less, btw, LRH. Keep buyin' those PowerBall tickets. You just might get lucky.
11.29.2012 | Unregistered CommenterKLG
One, all the ranting about cargo shorts?? I understand when they first appeared, they usually did not look great, but many versions today are slim cut with smaller pockets. Armani, Boss and Zegna all make nicely cut versions these days. They are often featured in good men's mags like GQ and Esquire so I don't think they are just "peasant" wear any longer. I hope LeeWatson is being funny, because the times are changing, For example, many people no longer wear knee -high socks with their shorts. Most club dress codes are as outdated as the geezers sleeping in the lounge. I am sure MJ looked quite presentable.
Two, MJ has probably worn them to exclusive places before but the clubs chose not to make a fuss.
Three, the genius at this club who decided it was best to make an issue of it mid-round should not be allowed near any guests. Full stop.
Best to mention it after the round and very privately. I understand the argument about the rules applying to everyone but tact is key.
Four. People ranting about different treatment for rich people usually comes off sounding like sour grapes. Bad form.
That my rant!
11.29.2012 | Unregistered CommenterKG
The guy was doing MJ a favor, I'm sure he was on his way to another fine round of 120..........74 with the cheating........
Ky has hit on the key term -- "class" -- or lack thereof.
11.29.2012 | Unregistered CommenterDTF
KLG Well said.

LRH You sound like someone that thinks rules are for everyone else, not you. George Carlin once had a funny skit about people like that.
11.29.2012 | Unregistered Commenterol Harv
Maybe they were betting how far MJ would get before being asked to leave.
11.29.2012 | Unregistered CommenterMJN

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