Saturday, April 30, 2005

The Birthday Boy

It was pouring outside when I left for work this morning, so I wasn't surprised that I had to wait a few hours to go out. But to tell you the truth, I'm glad that I had to wait. I tell ya, the things you hear in the caddie room are priceless. Today when I walked in, there was an older guy sitting at the desk staring off into space. He had a deck of cards under his right hand, and he would focus for a moment, yell out a card, and then pick a card off of the top of the deck to see if he was right. I think the fact that he was taking this task so seriously was what made it funny. And of course everyone was watching him.

"Ace!"

"Nope, it's a two dude."

"I was almost right!"

"Yeah, you were right until you picked up the card."

Great stuff. The guy also decided to share a highly inappropriate story, which of course was highly appropriate in that room.

"So I'm about to do this line of coke, right? And the guy I'm sharing it with does a line, and as he's taking it in, snot is spraying out of his other nostril, right? And it's getting all over our shit. I'm thinking, 'That's it for me. You've cured me. That is gross as shit dude.'"

I hope none of you are eating anything right now. Cause that story will make you a little queasy.

In the small locker room behind the desk, caddies are yelling and laughing as people play darts. I see my boss run out and grab one of the other caddies to start wrestling him, and the caddie grabs and chair and jams it into my boss's ribcage.

"Oh, man! What was that chair about?"

"I don't want you coming at me with pressure points and shit!"

As I watched, I just kept thinking: Wow. I think this is one of the only jobs in the world where you can wrestle with your boss, maybe get in a few hits, and then leave the confrontation laughing and joking around. It's like we're all brothers.

Soon somebody came in with the pairing sheets for a special tournament this Monday and Tuesday. Teams play 36-holes the first day and then 18 the second day. I think they play alternate shot, two man best ball, and medalist competitions and then tally up the results after the two days. I think saying that I was "pretty psyched" to see my name on the list would be an understatement.

The rain was letting up by now, and as I'm relaxing with the other caddies watching "Ace Ventura: Pet Detective" the assistant caddie master comes in and says, "Tom, you ready to go?"
Sure, what the hell.

Today it was two bags. And I would find out later in the round that one of the players I was caddying for just had a birthday. I think that's why he was acting like a spoiled brat. Which was funny, because he was quite stout and sounded like Louie Anderson. So I had to listen to his whining all freakin' day.

Ol' Louie wasn't having the best day, and to compound things, he would pick up his ball and start walking to the next tee before everyone had finished putting, and I had to chase his ass down.

"Tom, where's my driver?"

Maybe if you turned around and noticed that I was running at you with your driver in my hand, you wouldn't have to ask that question.

He also became very sensitive to people talking when he was hitting. Well, it started off as him only being pissed off when he was about to swing, but then it evolved into him being pissed at anyone and anything even breathing when OTHER people were hitting.

"Hey, CADDIE...SHHHHH!!"

He said this to the other caddie I was working with who was discussing some swing thoughts with one of his players. Oh yeah, and this player the caddie was talking to? Yeah, this guy is a MEMBER.

Louie, you're the guest, alright? Don't make the MEMBER apologize for talking. You're lucky you even get to play this course. Bastard.

But two things happened on the 14th and the 15th which confirmed for me that there is a God and he wants us to be happy. Well, actually, I already came to that conclusion after tasting Samuel Smith's Oatmeal Stout, but this really confirmed my aforementioned epiphany: On 14, he started popping pills for a sore right elbow.

"It's weird that I get it in my right elbow because I'm left-handed."

Well, maybe if you didn't hit it into the rough so much, you wouldn't have this problem.

Wait, that's kinda mean. I don't wish pain on anyone.

Well, maybe he got what he deserved on 15. I guess 14 was funny for me because I was exhausted from running rough-to-rough all day long to find his balls. Retribution's a bitch, ain't it Louie?

On 15, he hit a perfect drive down the fairway. After I gave him the distance, he paused and called to his member-friend, who I think had a big smile surgically implanted on his face.

"Hey, watch this shot. I'm going to get a little creative with this one."

Before he even hit it, I was already laughing inside. What is he talking about? This is coming from a man who skanked every other shot. I was getting annoyed with him earlier because he'd ask me the distance, top the shot 15 yards, and ask me for the next distance before I could even pick up the bags and start walking towards his ball. This would happen two or three times on a hole. Why ask for a distance? Does it really matter what club you hit?

So he says he's going to get "a little creative."

He sways into the backswing, drives down through with his rescue club, and hits a fat hook that ends up in the second cut short of the green.

Yeah. I'd say that was creative.

I think there's only one thing worse for a guy than finding out the girl he was kissing might actually be a man (you know who you are): and that's calling a shot in front of friends and missing your mark. But the member was graceful. He just kept right on smiling and started walking towards the green.

By the way: that windbreaker I was worried about the other day? Yeah, I left it in the switch-out bag. Fortunately, one of the staff members said it was no problem to fix. I'm glad that's the case, seeing as how my boss said that if he ever had to find something one of his caddies' lost for a player, he was going to charge $20/hour to solve the problem. I mean, I suppose that's the right thing to do. Teach people a lesson early so they know not to screw up. Hopefully I'll be a little more careful in the future, because I definitely got away with one there.

So that's it. Can't wait to see who I'm caddying for tomorrow.

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