I had already spent ten minutes wandering through the trees looking for the errant golf ball I had hit and I knew Mike and Ryan were getting impatient. One more minute, I told myself, and then I would just accept the one stroke penalty. I flipped over a flat rock with the head of my golf club and then out of the corner of my eye, round and white, I saw the golf ball. I breathed a sigh of relief. When I bent down to pick it up, however, the ball wasn’t there. I looked around confused and then found it again, ten yards to my right. I took a couple of cautious steps forward and then realized my mistake. It was not my golf ball but the round tail of a white rabbit. I cursed under my breath.
Before I could walk away, however, the rabbit turned around and, in a dignified voice suitable only for a British radio announcer, said “Follow me.” I blinked. “Ahem,” the rabbit said clearing its throat. “If you want your golf ball back, follow me,” and it hopped off further into the woods, with me, not sure whether it was to retrieve my golf ball or simply because the rabbit had said anything at all, following as close as I could.
After a while we came to a clearing in the woods, with a small stream on one side and the trees shaping the rest of the border. Here were gathered deer, owls, foxes, turtles, frogs, monkeys, bears, squirrels, beavers and animals of all other sorts. In front of them stood a flip chart on a wooden easel. My rabbit friend hopped up to it and began to address the crowd as I took a seat on a mossy log next to a rather pretentious looking otter.
“Friends,” began the rabbit, “we have all fallen on tough times but no one more so than John, who has lost his golf ball.” He was pointing at me. “We will use this to our advantage, however. When John fills out his taxes this year, he will claim that the golf ball was stolen and will file for a tax deduction. He will then take the money he saves from the IRS, and invest it in a company that I will incorporate called Rabbit Holdings, Inc. Bear and Squirrel will then sell shares of this company to two people each. The return for their investment will partially come from John’s golf ball money and in part from the money that we will earn when Deer and Owl sell shares of Rabbit Holdings to two more people…”
It was dark when I finally made it back to the golf course. I walked back into the clubhouse and found Mike and Ryan having a drink at the bar, waiting for me.
“So, did you find your golf ball?” said Mike. I shook my head. I didn’t want to tell them that I had almost been hired to take part in a Ponzi scheme run by a rabbit who talked with a British accent. I could think of only one thing more embarrassing.
“It’s almost better that you didn’t,” Ryan interjected before I could even say anything. “See, Mike and I were sitting here at the bar waiting for you and we met the most amazing fellow. Apparently, if you claim that your golf ball was stolen then you can claim it as a tax deduction. Then all you need to do is invest it in…”
This post was based off of the following writing prompt: You’re on a golf course taking part in a fundraiser to cure a disease that’s near and dear to your heart. On the 11th hole, you hit a ball into the woods. While searching for that ball, you see a white rabbit that stops, looks you right in the eye and says, “Follow me.” Link: http://www.writersdigest.com/prompts/golf-fundraiser-takes-an-interesting-turn