Thursday, May 05, 2005

Part 2 -- The "Truck"

After a hot shower, stretching, and zoning out for four hours Monday night, I felt I was as prepared as I would ever be for the final round of this tournament on Tuesday.

Just as on Monday, I walked in Tuesday morning and milled around with the other caddies for 30-40 minutes because of a frost delay. Then the usual routine: the halfway house girls walked through the caddie area like a couple of cows on their way to becoming cheeseburgers, the boss took roll-call, and then we all walked up to where the players were waiting for us.

The other caddie assigned to my group came up a little after I did, and as soon as he noticed that our group was away from their carts, he took a moment to check with me about who I was comfortable going with.

"So, it was one of the guys in this cart here that you really didn't like?"

It was a nice gesture to try and check with me first, but right as he said this one of the players in the cart he was pointing to walked over and grabbed his putter. As the player started walking over towards the practice green, he turned around and stared at me.

Shit. He heard.

Now, I was a little nervous, because at this point I hadn't been tipped from the FIRST day yet. I can't work with that guy now. He'd rather punch me in the stomach than tip me. I think the other caddie realized what had just happened because he quickly moved behind this guy's cart, signifying that HE would be taking the aforementioned old dude. So no punch in the stomach for me today.

Before we left, however, I did appreciate seeing the other caddie pretend to hump one of the players when he wasn't looking. Like Stifler from American Wedding. What an image that was.

And then we were off.

I was paired again with Mr. Permafrown, the sidesaddle wonder. The other teammate, however, I had not had the pleasure of working with yet. He was another older gentleman who seemed nice enough during the introductory handshake, but would he be fun to work for? I guess we'll see.

The other two guys rounding out the foursome were a couple of Spaniards. They wore matching shirts and one of them reminded me of Seve. They had that quiet, angry determination to win and the stare-down to match. One of these guys also wore these super tight, super-pressed pants that had so much sheen that when the sun hit them it transformed his legs into a pair of knives. Regardless of where you were standing your eyes were sucked into the vortex that was his ass-crack. I was praying he wasn't going to start sweating.

But before I continue, I have to add this little gem: I WAS RIDING IN A CART for most of the round. Wow. I did not see that one coming. Here I am, recovering from that 36-hole day from hell, and I get to the first tee the next day and the two of them are like, "Tom, we're going to walk today."

I twitch a little as I start un-strapping their bags from the cart. My mind is already trying to prepare itself for a day of carrying two bags.

"No, there's no reason for you to be carrying two bags today. Just leave them on the truck. We might want to use it later."

Excuse me? "Truck?" Yep, I heard right. This new guy referred to the cart as a "truck" or a "wagon" throughout the entire round. What kind of lingo is that anyway?

But who cares. I'M RIDING IN A CART TODAY.

And for a good portion of the round, they didn't use the cart. At first I was awestruck. Are they serious? They just want me riding in the cart and keeping score? I mean yeah, I'll be doing all the forecaddying I should, but during the meeting this morning the boss specifically told all of the caddies to stay off of the carts. But hey, they requested it. I'm not asking any questions.

By the second hole, I started laughing because I looked back at the group behind us and saw that both of the caddies for that group were doing the exact same thing. Did all of the players have a little pow-wow last night and decide to take it easy on the caddies today? What's the deal?

So it was great. I finished the round without even breaking a sweat, and they ended up tipping me what I was "contracted" for. Piece of cake.

But back to some of the highlights. I don't know what his problem was, but the new guy in my group loved to do two things: He loved to save his outbursts for me and only me, and he liked to hold onto his club after a bad shot.

After an errant tee shot, this guy would be joking with his partner and the other two guys in the foursome the whole way up to his ball, and once he split off from them to get a yardage from me he would instantly start swearing.

"God you SUCK! You fucking suck! Shithead! You don't deserve to play this game!"

Then he'd "calm down" and hit his next shot, which was usually a mishit. And when I reached out to take the club away from him, he'd yank the club closer to his chest and walk quickly away from me. What is he, like 6-years old? "NO! IT'S MY FUCKING TOY!"

Or when I was finally able to take the club away from him, I'd carefully slide it back down into his bag, only to have him come by and yank it out and forcefully throw it back down in the same slot. Gee, that was meaningful. Do you re-grip your clubs after every ROUND?

What else. Oh, it was ridiculous how "uncouth" my team was towards these two Spaniards. One of them was named Felipe, which I'm sure is pronounced "Fa-lee-pay" or something close to that. My team-members, on the other hand, proceeded to call this guy "Felipee." Which I'm sure he greatly appreciated. And near the start of the round, one of my guys blurts out, "Oh hey, Felipee, I know this Spanish guy from blah blah club. Do you know him?"

Somehow, Felipe actually DID know this guy. Weird.

Personally, I thought it was a pointless comment to make, because it's along the same lines as, "Hey, you're Canadian. I know this girl Deb who lives in Canada. Do you know her?"


Felipe was also very sensitive to noises around him before he was about to hit the ball. On the 6th hole, he missed a putt and immediately started cursing. I didn't really know what he said, but I heard a word that resembled "parlare," an Italian word meaning "to speak." Somehow I made a connection as he threw down the ball again to practice his last putt.

"Felipe, were you distracted by those guys talking in the fairway?"


I was kind of impressed that I picked up on that, but man was he pissed. That carried over to our 18th hole, when one of my players was walking down the fairway talking to himself (at full volume, no doubt) as Felipe hit. After he skanked the shot, Felipe spun around like a bullfighter dodging a charge and glared at Mr. Permafrown. Not surprisingly, Mr. Permafrown started shitting his pants and quickly tried to apologize, but it was no use. "Felipee" could sure hold a grudge. I could tell he was still bitching about it even after we stepped off of the final green.

And even though it was a new pair, the Testes were at it again. These two guys were 5-10 feet away from each other on just about every fairway. I felt kinda gay watching those balls sag and change positions throughout the round. But hey, it's part of the job.


Bryan said...

I used to have a cussing problem on the course.

Wait a sec. "Had", oh I meant "still do" :)

Actually, I used to be alot worse, but it was more on a 'get down on yourself' kind of way. I would hit myself in the chest, call myself a fucking worthless piece of shit, etc...

Pretty sad to be honest. I have grown up. Now I Just call myself a worthless piece of shit, not a fucking worthless piece of shit... just kidding.

The one thing I have always noticed, when YOU are the one cussing, it seems normal, but when you watch someone else make an ass out of themselves, you realize how stupid you look when you do it. weird.

Jam Boy said...

As long as the players don't get violent and start throwing clubs, I have no problem with cussing. It just means you're a serious golfer. I used to get down on myself a lot too. But then I did a little experiment. One summer when I was playing golf almost everyday (I was pretty young) I'd go out onto the course with one of two mindsets: I'd either pretend I was competing and take everything seriously, or I would just joke around and have fun. At the end of the summer, I took the average scores from both mindsets. No joke: I was almost 5 strokes better when I just relaxed and had fun. From then on, I was a lot more easy-going.

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