Guide he Ins and Outs of Your Country Club Membership

The problem is that you have this, uh. cousin. And let’s just say that this cousin can’t keep up with his country club dues. What’s even worse is that he can’t even clear out his monthly account to which he’s charged all those family dinners, drinks, and pro shop souvenirs. Should you: A) tell your cousin to rest easy since you know the club roster is huge and that they’ll never be able to track him down, B)tell him that he might try to find a buyer for the membership, or C) tell him he’s just committed a felony and that he’d better pay up or risk being kicked out?

If you chose A. you’re living in Dallas, circa 1910. Country club rosters today are rarely large enough for anyone to be acci-dently filed under “Paid In Full.” Accounting departments in these clubhouses run tight ships. If your cousin fails to pay his bill by the 10th of the month (Bent Tree and Dallas Country’ Club are kind enough to hold off for sixty days), his name gets slapped on the clubhouse bulletin board, earning him a spot amid other deadbeats-of-the-month. If the check isn’t in the mail after the posting (Bent Tree, Dallas Country Club, and Northwood tack on thirty more days, but unsympathetic Brook Hollow nails you after an additional ten), he’s finished on the club circuit. Answer A, therefore, is incorrect.

Answer B is also out of date. There are only two ways out of your membership: die or get expelled.

Which leads us to answer C, the correct choice. While it’s not a felony for your cousin to become delinquent on his payments, he may have to commit a felony to get out. Assuming he’d rather not die. that leaves expulsion. There are numerous exit ramps on Expulsion Highway, the least painful being non-payment. There are some more creative ways out. He can be convicted of violating the club’s bylaws, or he can ensure that his conduct on club grounds is branded ’’unbecoming.” “against the good interest of the club,” nefarious, or immoral. Any combination of the above is his sure bet to freedom.

After your cousin’s goodbye party, he may be due a refund on his initiation fee. But most clubs return only 25 percent of the initiation fee less taxes and outstanding charges. And once the account is settled, money is returned only if the club can find someone else to fill his spot.

Now, let’s say you have this brother.. ..

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