Wednesday, May 3, 2017

"Perfect Drive"

Intro

I'm a 3-handicap. I know that for sure. Big deal. Hip, hip, hooray!

I also know for sure that my best days on the golf course are long gone. Long gone...

It might just be the way my 55-year-old equipment feels - my body, that is. Maybe it's because I played 12 rounds during the 2016 calendar year? Maybe it's my aversion to practice? 

How about "all of the above"?

This bloody game!

The golf gods have a way of keeping our feet firmly on the ground. I believe this to be so and I’ve spoken to this notion in the past. And methinks the golf gods have heard my self-talk on occasion.

I believe they know when to step in and force upon me a slice or two of humble pie.

So, here goes – my recent comeuppance. Proceed with caution. I think it's ugly. It's not for the faint of heart.

The Back Nine Cometh

As I stood on the 10th tee at the Royal Colwood Golf Club, a 425-yard par-4, slight dogleg right, I’d negotiated the outward nine at one-over-par. Eight pars and a bogey. Hittin' it solid. Rollin' the rock. Total control. Rather tidy so far, I figured.

We punched the tabs open on a few cans of Lone Star penicillin to celebrate at the turn. Then I stepped on to the tee. And it just “evolved”...

1. Perfect drive.

2. Shank 4-iron.

3. Shank pitching wedge.

4. 7-iron pitch shot along the ground under a tree branch into a greenside bunker.

5. Sand wedge skulled across the green into the other greenside bunker.

That’s “5”, and now my golf ball is plugged in the bunker under the lip and I have no shot in the direction of the flagstick.

So...

6. Sand wedge sideways out of the bunker to the rough behind the green.

7. Sand wedge – chili dipped the chip shot short of the green.

8. Sand wedge – chipped to 15-feet.

By now, many golfers are already "in their pocket", clinging to the farcical notion that "the most I can take is an 8 because of my handicap". Uh, no. The most you can take on a hole is whatever amount it takes for you to hole out!

And so I proceed... 

Putt.
Putt.
Putt.
Putt.

12.

Nice!

I’d hit ‘em all!

12 shots; 6 clubs; same golf ball.

Deflated? Not really. Elated? Not a chance! Somewhere in between where bewilderment resides. I hadn't caused any undue delay, but I did wonder how long the adventure had taken.

As I stood on the 11th tee, now comfortably nine-over-par for the day, I think my friends were rather taken aback. Actually, they hadn’t said a word. I know my crew well enough to recognize it would be up to me to break the silence. So I blurted out,

“How am I going to tell that story. I mean, where do I start?”

“Perfect drive,” my friend Nathan dead-panned.

The laughter might still be echoing through the monstrous Douglas Fir trees at Colwood!

Epilogue

Remember folks, if you absolutely cannot laugh at yourself while playing golf, ask yourself why you're out there?

And just to burst your bubble again, be fully aware that the golf gods will find a way to provide plenty of opportunities for you to try and muster up a few self-targeted chuckles.

Embrace the moment!

Fore!