I have to warn you guys, this is a long post. I started going on a tangent one night when I was writing and just decided to go with it. So if you want to throw in a load of laundry or something, now is the time.
I’m currently participating in a kickball league.
No, really. I’m serious. I’m on a team named “Awkward Mornings,” and every Tuesday night we battle another group of misfits in a game that combines 3 great sports: soccer, baseball, and dodge-ball. I mean what could be better than that?
It’s a fun game until you drop a fly ball and feel slightly retarded for doing so. I mean the ball is bigger than a basketball. It’s not moving very fast…and yet…you drop it.
But, it is because of reasons such as this that the REAL match is played at a local bar about 45 minutes later, where a heated game of flip cup seems to establish the overall winners of the evening.
After all the pitchers, shots with the bartenders (well I mean…shit…THEY bought), yelling over Journey to talk about how cool our team name is and a few hours of mingling with the other teams, I pass out on my friend’s couch and awake a few hours later to head back to my apartment for a shower before work.
I honestly don’t know what some of these players do for a living where they can go out and drink HEAVILY every night of the week. Wednesday mornings suck enough for me the way it is right now, let alone trying it every night of the week and shortening my life span by about 3 years. There’s a time and place for all that. And it just so happens that place is Florida. I’ll “delve” into that little topic soon enough.
Anyway, Wednesday’s are a lot of fun for me. And, because I normally come into work pumped up and act completely insane most of the time, it’s very easy for people to tell how crazy I got the night before. Uber geeks watching porn make more noise than I do after a rough night of sipping soda with the rest of my jovial cohorts.
“Tom, are you ‘hurtin’’?”
That’s our little code word around the yard for “hung-over.”
“Well suit up. Got a loop waitin’ for ya.”
“What’s the members’ name?”
“Have you been with Mr. Fun yet?”
“No. Nice guy?”
“He’s an asshole.”
Mr. Fun was a rather rotund hairball with legs. He walked like he had a golf ball lodged in his rectum (probably from one of his own errant tee shots) and he sounded like Louie Anderson. He had three guests: Mr. Normal-Face, The Ambassador, and Mr. Perfy. Mr. Normal-Face looked as though he had been drinking since he was a fetus. His glowing red face must’ve been very popular back in college at those ever so popular “Rudolph-the-red-nosed-reindeer-dress-up” parties. Then there was “The Ambassador.” I never learned his real name because that was the only name by which he wanted to be called. Guess he wanted to hang onto those golden years way back when where abusing diplomatic immunity was the “in” thing to do. He refused to learn my name (I have a name tag), which is fine because it is quite complex to pronounce (only one syllable). Instead, he simply called me “Caddie” the whole round.
“Caddie! Where does this break?”
“Breaks right. About two cups.”
“Hey Ambassador, nice shot. I just need to get a couple of clubs from the cart here and I’ll go up and admire that life-changing 3-wood you just hit from 119 yards out.”
“Get the cart?? Ha! The CADDIE will do that for us! Won’t you Caddie?”
Wait. I’m sorry. What was your name again? Douchebag? Oh wait. That’s right. “The Ambassador.” I must’ve mispronounced the “A” when I said “Douchebag” just then. My bad.
The last player in the group I named after David Pelz’s putting dummy, “Perfy.” Perfy is flawless on the greens given the right line and speed. No muscles or ego to block the way. Just metal and gravity. Perfy had 22 putts all day. And nobody seemed to care but me. I was in AWE of this DEMI-GOD of a man.
During the round, Mr. Fun had this quirky habit of wanting the yardage from EVERYWHERE. Normally, I wouldn’t have a problem with this because I feel that the more yardages I give out, the more meaningful my position. But this squealing hairball of a man NEVER hit the ball anywhere NEAR his target or the yardage given. You remember TC Chen, right? That guy in the Masters who lost because he double-chipped his ball on 15 (I think that was the hole)? I saw Mr. Fun do that 3 times today. And two of them were full swings. On 13, he hit his ball again on the upswing and skulled it 20 yards back over his head. If he had been choking up on the club there was a good chance it would’ve hit him directly in the face.
But the 15th hole says it all.
All four teed off. Two went left and two went right. I decided that it was in my best interest (as far as the tip was concerned) to follow Mr. Fun and make sure his stay on hole 15 was a pleasant one. Well he was one of the balls that went right. Short right. Technically, his dick should’ve been hanging out. But I mean hey, today was a day of sportsmanship, not technicalities.
He whiffs his second shot. He’s 345 yards away, and he wants a yardage. So I give it to him.
“Well then. I guess I better lay up.”
Shanks his third into the woods.
He is now 284 yards from the front, but that doesn’t matter because he has no shot. He has to pitch it out laterally.
“How far to the front?”
I tell him.
“Well, are you going to just stand there? Or are you actually going to do your job and give me a line at the green?”
I stand in the middle of the woods amongst a plethora of angry squirrels. I beg them all for forgiveness. He knows not what he does. He’s just a blind brother of yours looking for a nut to chew on.
He shanks his fourth deeper into the woods.
“Well now. This isn’t fun. How far do I have now?”
I give him a look that seems to ask the question, “Does it really matter you steaming pile of Yak feces?”
“What? I want to know.”
“224 to the front.” At this point I’m making up yardages.
“AND? Where should I aim?”
I stand against a tree, erring on the side of a lateral movement toward the fairway.
He absolutely kills his fifth shot, which bounces around the trees like pinball before finally coming to rest in a big-ass bush.
“Where did it go?”
But I didn’t see. And the reason—which I forgot to mention—is that the other player in his cart is in a similar situation and I was busy hacking his ball out from under a different bush.
“I didn’t see.”
“Why not? Isn’t that your job?”
“My face was in this bush looking for your partners’ ball.”
“So what? Where’s my ball?”
Were you ever loved as a child? Or did your parents simply abandon you because you’re so freakin’ IRRESISTABLE?
SOMEHOW I find his ball in a nearby bush. He takes an unplayable, and now he’s hitting 7. Wouldn’t you know it, he whiffs his 7th shot and the ball comes to rest down in some exposed roots of a tree in between the SAME BUSHES. Meanwhile, his playing partner is laughing hysterically.
He takes another drop (because he’s worried about breaking his wrists, although with his club-head speed I have to wonder if he even displaces any AIR MOLECULES), and proceeds to chunk a 3-wood straight up into some branches, where it rattles around and bounces behind us.
He shot me a look to see if I thought any of this was funny. I could’ve won the World Series of Poker with the stare I gave him. I was expressionless. We must’ve stared at each other for at least a minute before he regained his composure and decided to try again. He was breathing hard at this point and the heat was slowing him down. He was now hitting 9, about 220 from the flagstick.
Somehow, he hit a miraculous low-hook out from all of the trees and skipped it into a fairway bunker. About 75 yards remain.
If Bigfoot had a younger brother, and if that younger brother happened to drive a Taxi cab around downtown Manhattan, that would have to be what I saw emerge from the forest that day. He valiantly approached his bunker shot after he gave me another Shooter-McGavin-esque look and he skulled his 10th shot into the lip of the bunker. The ball rolled back to his feet.
“GOD DAMN MY HAIRINESS!” He screamed to the heavens.
He pauses, full of hope and ground beef, and hits an awesome 11th shot. He sticks it to 20 feet and leaves me with half a bunker to rake because he walked all over it looking for a sandcastle to kick over.
He picks up his ball and tosses it in my direction.
“I’ve had enough of this hole.”
What? Oh come ON man! You’ve got to be kidding me! I have to know how this ends. Are you going to sink it? 3-putt? What?
But we will never know. We can hypothesize, though. My own personal opinion is that while he addressed his putt the heavens opened up, a little smurf-like creature descended upon the green, pulled out a lighter, and blew a big gassy fireball in Mr. Fun’s direction. Mr. Fun is then TURNED ON by what he interprets as some sort of mating ritual, and sinks his putt for a legitimate 12.
Granted, I have no PROOF of this. It’s just a gut feeling, really.
And I can always tell that a bad tip is coming even before I take the money out of my pocket to look. If the money is rolled up really tight in the form of a doobie or some sort of origami cube, you’re not lookin’ too good. Mine was of the doobie persuasion.
Thursday, August 31, 2006
I have to warn you guys, this is a long post. I started going on a tangent one night when I was writing and just decided to go with it. So if you want to throw in a load of laundry or something, now is the time.
Tuesday, August 29, 2006
“Let us pray. I’d like to thank the good Lord for blessing us with this wonderful day and this golf we are about to play. Thank you for bringing everyone here safely Lord, and we ask only to let us enjoy the day.”
That was the start of my loop. All four players huddled on the first tee, bowed their heads and enjoyed a prayer together. And I’m not saying it’s weird. Granted, I’m not one to partake in that sort of thing, but what I WILL say is that they certainly did not take anything for granted out there.
This is a good thing too, because they certainly saw a lot of the golf course that day.
But I have never felt handshakes like those. It was like each of them squeezed just hard enough—long enough—to get a good sense of the kind of person you were. Human spirit detectors. I was a little afraid of this at first, because I’ve BEEN to sales-school, and I know how important that first handshake is. What sort of impression was I leaving on each of them? I was waiting for one of them to pause after shaking my hand and say, “Wait a minute. Are you that sorry sack of shit that writes about caddying on the internet? You’re going to hell you know.”
Instead, they had other important topics to discuss.
“Hey Bob, when Satan tries to tempt you…what do you do? Do you just flick it off like it was nothin’?”
“Well I suppose it would depend on what it is David.”
“Well, I mean…have you heard of this Kama Sutra stuff?”
“No…can’t say I have David…why?”
“Or this Tantric massage?”
“Well, I must admit, I have indulged in that from time to time.”
All four of them made it a habit on every hole to take their own personal paths to enlightenment. Every shot they hit was in a different direction. They were all such free fucking spirits. They would each take a mighty swing, drop their club and glide angelically over the rough like a higher power was pulling them on a string further and further into the trees. I swear to sunny Jesus they split me on every hole.
“What happened there? What am I doing?”
No idea. It happened so fast. Can you take a club real quick so I can help your friend?
“Why did that happen? My swing feels like…Poopy.”
“What do you think for your next shot? Putter?”
“I’m 83 yards from the front.”
“Where’s Tom? I need a club.”
“Sorry! I’M STILL TRYING TO GET HIM TO USE HIS PUTTER!”
“But he’s 83 yards away from the front!”
And on and on.
I’ve also discovered that on a humid day when you’re caddying hard, your mind starts playing tricks on you. The other caddie in the group noticed it first on 8. He winced, pitched forward a little and started grabbing at his crotch.
“Oh FUCK man…damn…feels like a tick is biting my TAINT.”
I just laughed, knowing it was some acute form of caddie ass playing tricks with his mind. But then it happened to me on 12. And when this happens to you, your mind starts racing, trying to remember every time in your LIFE that you may have wandered into tall grass. Were there any ticks in there? Or how about when I went in the water the other day? Any ticks there?
Some pretty scary stuff. And of course the players don’t understand. They just see some sweaty caddie with two bags on his shoulders grabbing his crotch and squealing like Michael Jackson on a couple of glowing tiles.
It’s not funny. It hurts like a bitch man. And the sad part is, it’s not like I can go to a drugstore and try to explain to a pharmacist what my problem is. It would be too embarrassing. Plus, I’m not really sure if he knows what a “taint” is anyway. He’d probably get me some Brill Cream and call it a day.
I mean, I could still USE it. But it wouldn’t really help my situation.
Take care all.
Posted by Tom Collins at 2:01 PM
Sunday, August 20, 2006
Did you know that urine is actually a highly effective facial cleanser?
I myself have never been a huge fan of the golden shower, but there was quite a discussion in the caddie room this morning about it. Apparently dousing your face in piss once a day does WONDERS for your complexion. Although, the caddie who brought it up looked like he had pink eye in BOTH EYES. So I guess when you partake in “bringing on the piss” (Here’s to you, Dane Cook), wear some protective GOGGLES or suffer the consequences.
Oh well. Something to keep in mind I guess.
Although the sheet was well peppered with players and possible loops, I ended up sitting around for quite a while today. I was about to give up. Not a big deal, but I have been looking for some more inspiration to write.
And then it happened. A foursome added on and I was the last caddie in the yard. The funny thing was, they all wanted to walk. So what happened? One of the staff guys grabbed some weird attachment thingy and transformed the cart from a two-bag sissy into a four-bag colossus. The foursome would now be able to walk. And I was destined to ride.
But wait. I’ve never caddied like this before. Yes, of course I drive over to each player so they can get the club they need. That part is obvious. But to some extent the tip you receive at the end of the round is a reflection of how hard you work. If I’m sitting on my ass for 5 hours while these guys are sweating their balls off running back and forth trying to get the clubs they need, should they really be tipping me? I mean, what was I really doing for them?
Well let’s see. Cue that wacky Deliverance-esque banjo music!
“Now sons, hit the ball as hard as you can in THAT direction, okay?”
(In unison) “Sure thing Paw!”
Skull. Shank. Duff.
“Drive that cart over here!”
“No wait! I got it! Don’t go out of your way! I want to sweat my balls off for no good reason today!”
“Hey Tom! I just skanked my 3-wood straight up in the air and I DON’T NEED ANOTHER CLUB!”
Dirt flying everywhere. Somewhere a woman is screaming.
Despite my belief that I would need to be whipping back and forth across the fairway, these guys hustled. I never seemed to veer away from the middle of the fairway. They’d run up, grab 2-10 clubs out of somebody’s bag (oftentimes the wrong one), and then run to their next shot.
“Glasses” was the first of the four. Glasses liked to hold the golf club like a pool cue and swing as hard as he could off of his back foot. Not surprisingly, he KILLED his tee shots (when he didn’t completely miss them) and possessed an unbelievable short game (when he didn’t hit a pitch shot short AGAIN into another greenside bunker). Oh yeah. He also liked to squeal like a pig when he mishit a shot. His face would tense up and every muscle in his body (including his penis) would flex simultaneously.
“Shades” was a born hustler, and he was by far the most optimistic of the group. He would either take a 4 foot divot or hit the purest shot you’ve ever seen in your life, stick it 2 feet from the flagstick and proceed to 6-putt, due to his complete lack of feel. He was a beast. The other players nicknamed him “Steel-hands McCloud.”
“So Tom? What’s the line?”
“Okay. Now where’s the Steel-hands McCloud line?”
I’d point at the center of the cup.
“But Tom. I’m 30 feet away.”
The last two players were father and son. The son was very relaxed and acted as if he was walking around a museum rather than playing golf. He was quite indifferent to anything going on around him. The father, on the other hand, was the player in the group. He was around a 7 or 8 handicap, and HIS super-power was undoubtedly his ability to come up with something funny to say in every situation.
“Hey, Dad? Is that group behind us catching up?”
“Why shouldn’t they son? They only started TOMORROW.”
And the cursing only amplified itself as the round progressed.
“Help me Tom Cruise!”
“Need a club over there?”
(Ball whizzes past my face)
“Hey Dad look! A bird!”
“What are you, retarded?”
“STOP MISHITTING SHOTS DUMBASS!”
“I think I have a hernia in my penis!”
And then somehow by the grace of 8 pound 3 ounce baby Jesus, the round came to an end. Some days I just get lucky I guess.
Posted by Tom Collins at 11:14 AM
Thursday, August 10, 2006
So I finally moved back to Virginia after quite a long and drawn out hiatus. It feels so good to be back. Rental issues, future plans, bills, and dreams of crack-laced cigars have all been moved to the backburner. My first day back I waited around for 9 hours before I was put out on a loop. I didn’t care. I just couldn’t wait to see the golf course and get back into shape again.
Yeah. Getting back into shape. I had forgotten how hard caddying was on the body. And the heat didn’t help. Carrying two bags in 95-plus degree heat with humidity feels pretty wonderful, let me tell you. Fortunately, both of my players were good sticks and didn’t split me too often.
Since then I’ve done three loops and haven’t read a putt yet. It’s kind of like the feeling you have when you go a couple of months without sex (and for those of you who never have to wait that long, you should all just burn in hell), and then the opportunity finally arises. You’re a little nervous and you’re not really sure how to take the next step. That’s exactly what it feels like for me on the 1st green nowadays. Do they want a read? Will they ask me for one later? Are they going to be happy with the way I read their putts?
Sooner or later I’m going to have to stop the foreplay and just come right out and say that I want to have sex with them on the 1st green.
Wait. That didn’t come out right. There’s no way I’d be that easy. Let’s say the 12th or 13th green. Or some place with a lot of bushes. Or maybe if they promise me a lot of money. I mean hey, crack is expensive these days. The market is really booming. I can’t get away with short selling it on the street anymore.
(Here comes a rather impressive segue)
I definitely saw the weirdest divot of my entire life today. It was on the 10th hole, and it was achieved by an individual with a 37.4 index. I only mention that because, as a general rule, higher handicappers are able to do things to a golf ball once thought of as freaking impossible by contemporary physicists.
So this Hurculean demigod of a man steps up to his ball, which is sitting above his feet in the middle of the fairway. Due to the sinister nature of the course designer, when he takes his stance he appears to have a downhill lie as well.
(At this point in the story, I need to specify that I dropped out of Calculus III, and so any assumptions or subsequent conclusions on the outcome of this shot I make are not based on the laws of vector mathematics)
With this lie and stance, the swing and ball flight could be almost anything. Well, Hercules took a mighty swing, took a mighty divot, and let out a mighty fart. The shot was horrible. The ball went everywhere except for his target. During the fallout, I ran up to collect the divot and replace it. When I arrived back at ground zero I saw something quite profound. Normally, when a normal person takes a normal divot, the section of earth that was sliced is fairly “normal.” It looks like a flatter, smoother “V” or a flatter, italicized “U.” In other words, the divot looks uniform in some way. This divot, however, looked more like ancient Mayan ruins. There were levels involved. It almost looked like a “Z” if you took the “Z” and made the middle of it 90 degrees instead of 45, and then extended the two ends about 8 inches apart.
I could be wrong, but I thought that the impact position was the one part of the swing that was the hardest to work on and control because the club-head is moving so quickly at that point. Somehow, this individual created half a divot, decided that he was hitting the shot TOO fat, raised the club-head up about half an inch and then continued the divot and followed through the ball to a nice Jim McClean finish.
I just wish I could’ve taken a picture of it.
Posted by Tom Collins at 8:50 AM
Tuesday, August 01, 2006
Pissed-off rant from earlier today:
What is it about a bad haircut that just fucking RUINS your day?
I thought I was going to be giving this rookie stylist a break by giving her a shot at her future profession. I mean, I would THINK that I would be one of her easiest customers, seeing as how my freakin’ HAT covers my head for most of the day. But no. She forgets to manicure the one part of my head that the hat CANNOT shield from a golfers’ eyes: the lower portion of the back of my head.
As a hair stylist, I think you have some options available to you. You can go straight across, you can rat-tail it, or you can leave a “W”-like pattern and consider yourself a fucking traditionalist. After using an attachment (analogous to fucking TRAINING WHEELS), you need only to use one of those little buzzer thingy’s and finish the job.
I mean, she did remember to trim my sideburns. I’ll give the little bitch that.
On my way out, one of the anxious, twitching Korean stylists finally decided to speak up: “Uh, sir, you happy with the back of your head?”
“Yes, why do you ask little anxious twitching Korean woman?”
“I just wanted to make sure.”
Didn’t really know what she was talking about until I just happened to be walking by a mirror and saw the horror that IS the back of my head. Yes. The fucking little newbie bitch-ho decided to slack. Or maybe she didn’t. Maybe she’s just retarded. Or BO-tarded. Whichever is worse.
Now I’m sitting here in Starbucks wasting my money on Iced Mocha Venti thingy’s, leaning against the back wall so as not to make all the little women and children faint at the sight of my head while trying to spend more money on the internet connection because I’m a complete and utter jackass.
Oh, and that Venti drink? Yeah. I just spilled it on myself.
A little prayer before bedtime:
I’m currently lying in the fetal position praying to the God of Beano to make the gas stop. If the pilot light on the nearby water heater decides to finally spark, I don’t think I will survive the night. And neither will the 20-30 people living within a 2-3 house radius.
I mean seriously: who farts consistently for four straight hours? Do I have a medical condition? I’ve never had this much trouble with Mexican food. I guess an ill-timed diet of beans can do all sorts of crazy things. I think I almost had an ASTHMA attack just then. I haven’t had any problems with my asthma since the counselors at “Camp Superkids” taught me how to use my breathing to help keep my lungs under control. I guess it has been too long since then and I have forgotten my rigorous Jedi training.
So, God? I know I smoke crack. Okay, a lot of crack. And I know I did have some ho’s for a while that I DID in fact pimp out for money. But I’m a good shit. I don’t deserve to die this way. Like…you remember that one Zookeeper in the Darwin Awards who was massaging the elephant’s butt-hole? You felt it was appropriate to allow that elephant to relieve himself and kill that poor Zookeeper, burying him in over a ton of elephant shit. If that poor bastard isn’t getting blown by Marylin Monroe right now I will know, quite emphatically, that you do not exist and that I should convert to Taoism. But please don’t make me do that. I mean, maybe the guy was molesting his nephew and deserved to die in that fashion. I mean who am I to judge?
Wait, so where was I?
Oh yeah. God? Please disable any and all electrical devices in the house this evening that might spark and blow up the neighborhood. Those poor families. Leave them out of it. It’s me you want.
Posted by Tom Collins at 10:51 AM