"if it's good news, it must be someone else's"

Sunday, June 20, 2010

(from the blook) the throes of duffers’ torment

dad (a.k.a., poppy) was a scratch golfer—impressive considering until his mid twenties the only birdie he had ever known was the little one that “told me so” .
in fact, he just shot a 68 the other day, and he’s 75 years old.
but with all the rounds he had played in between, with all the company trophies he had collected, with all the bets he had won, the hole-in-one remained the one elusive achievement he sought in order to complete his rather extraordinary hobby.
a triumph he nearly had given up on.
and in the later years leading up to his eventual hole-in-one, his disdain for lesser golfers grew exponentially, as every monday he read in silent agony the newark star ledgers’s weekly list of new jersey’s newly anointed in gory detail.

he seethed at the wrong clubs selection and the measly distances hit.
he roiled, if they were older … and female … and wheelchaired.
he fast was becoming a truly miserable man—his personal disappoint approaching a water hazard darkness.
that is, until he finally entered the elite club himself a few years back, around his seventieth birthday.

and thank god he did!

for had he not, today would surely have been the day.
the day he would have written an eloquent note of farewell in his best, eighth grade, award winning penmanship, chained himself to his golf bag, and sloshed his lowly life into the murky brown depths of the tenth fairway pond on his beloved mews golf course to drown in golf’s purpose unfulfilled.
for today he would have heard the story of a pennsylvania lady hitting her first hole-in-one on a pond protected green, similar to his own fond tenth.

a blind pennsylvania lady.

a blind pennsylvania lady who had the same chance of making a hole-in-one as a sighted person hitting a ball into the darkness of a new moon night with a blindfold on.
putting aside my suspicions about her feat, since it was only she and her husband playing (and we all know men will do the darnedest things for a chance to have—well, you fill in the blanks), true or not true, the very possibility would have been too much for poppy.

poppy—a man who would have certainly succumbed to the throes of duffers’ torment.


Randy Johnson said...

Bob, I’m glad your Poppy got his prize before that blind woman did, and before this happened: While I admit to taking certain liberties in many of my stories this account is 100% (I’ll take a lie detector test) true. I used to golf, but had given it up for decades when my wife decided she wanted to take up the sport (three years ago.) Well we took a couple lessons, and headed out to the course. I think it was the seventh hole, a short par three of about 130 yards. I chipped my first shot up high above the trees and landed it right in the middle of the green, just a few feet from the cup. My wife topped her tee shot and it rolled ahead about ten feet. “Tee up another one” I told her. “No, I have to hit it from there” she said. “That’s okay, it’s a friendly game” I answered “we won’t count that one.” “I don’t need any favors” she said as she walked up to the ball. “Whack!” The ball flew 5 feet off the ground for about 100 yards, bounced once, rolled, hit the pin, and fell in the cup! While it wasn’t a hole in one, she made her point, and I two-putted.

Did I mention I used to golf?

Robert Crane said...

now that is a great story. not a hole in one by any rigid golf standard but good enough for us duffers. tell your wife that my dad says she can now rest in peace. (also tell her, that his son adds, but she doesn't have to be in a hurry about it.)

Pam said...

Golf is the most frustrating sport in the world. I'd rather get thrown from a horse at full gallop than play a round of golf. I guess I have to say, A BAD DAY OF RIDING IS BETTER THAN A GOOD DAY OF GOLF.

Tell Mrs. Randy that I'm proud of her. There's nothing worse than an over solicitous husband who just had a good shot and the wife's drive goes two feet.

Then again, anger is a great motivator. It's amazing how far that little white ball can go when your mate pisses you off on the golf course. That is if you connect with the ball in the first place.

Happy trails!