If you read my column last week, you know how unhappy I was with my 7-wood, which just happens to be my favorite club. If you are interested (even if you really don't care), I used the club several times this week and it is back in my good graces.
A friend of mine told me that he enjoyed the article and proceeded to tell me a story of his own. I found his tale very amusing and thought I would pass it along to you. Enjoy.
Scott Daniel asked his boys, 14-year old Cody and 11-year old Shawn, if they would like to go play nine holes of golf. Both were up for the challenge, though Cody had never been to a golf course and Shawn had only played once. The question was posed to the boys, but the query was overheard by Scott's 7-year old daughter Leslie. Guess who else wanted to go?
Being the good dad and thinking that he could give his wife Jenny a few hours of peace and quiet, he relented, deciding to take all three of his kids. Besides what could it hurt to let Leslie putt on the greens? After all she had her own putter.
The "putter" was an old club that Leslie had latched on to. The club's grip was coming off and the whole thing was rusted out. That could be the result of Leslie leaving it lay in the yard on more than one occasion. In fact, the club once spent a winter of discontent in a snow bank outside the family garage.
So it was off to Clinton Heights in the middle of a warm August afternoon. The foursome went off the back nine, walking the local course. Now Scott plays golf about once, maybe twice, a YEAR. Still it was going to be fun playing a few holes with all of his kids.
No one was happier than Leslie though, as she drug her putter along until she could reach the green. Then she would be given a ball and with her trusty little club, she could putt until her heart was content.
Everything was going smoothly as the family came to the 17th tee. This hole at Clinton is a challenging par 5 with danger everywhere. Trees line the right side of the fairway all the way to the hole, which plays some 500 yards. Left isn't a bargain either and a creek about 80-90 yards from the green will get your attention. The green isn't easy to putt as it slopes severely from left to right.
By the time Scott and his children get to the green, he is ecstatic. He has reached the putting surface in regulation.
Yep, three solid shots and he is staring down a birdie putt. Not bad for a guy that considers breaking 60 for nine holes a good score. He's also glad because the round is almost over and he is getting tired.
His euphoria will be short lived however as he lines up his putt. He feels a tug on his sleeve and looks down to find a distraught Leslie. She tells her daddy that she left her "putter" on the bench by the 17th tee. Knowing that the club is in bad shape, and knowing that the dang thing is 500 yards back from which he just came, and knowing that he would have to be the one to go after it Scott suggested that Leslie just use one of her brother's putters on the final hole.
It seemed like a good idea to Scott, but not necessarily to little Leslie. Her eyes started welling up and soon the tears were flowing. She wanted HER putter. Scott realized what was about to happen.
As his kids went over to the 18th tee, Scott started the long trek back to the previous tee. He crossed the creek, climbed the hill and presumably mumbling something not printable under his breath, he wondered why he was doing this. Then it dawned on him. This was not just his daughter's favorite (and of course, only) club, it was much more.
This golf club was a hole digger, a bug swatter, and a pet prodder. It was, for all intents and purposes, a priceless family heirloom. It was hers and Leslie wanted it back!
Finally he reaches the bench and there it was - the object of his daughter's affection. It was beaten and battered, rusted and falling apart. He grabbed it and turned to go back. Then he thought he caught a break. A league had teed off behind the family and he spied the beverage cart near the 12th green. He knew the girl driving it and visualized getting a ride back to his awaiting family. He hollered at her, but she didn't hear and left in another direction.
So it was back to hoofing for dad, who became Superdad when he arrived at the 18th tee. Leslie was just glowing as dad handed the "favorite" club to his grateful daughter.
The family finished the 18th hole and it was time to go home. I can see the homecoming now and I wasn't even there. As Scott brings the car to a stop in the driveway, the kids exit. Cody and Shawn are taking their clubs to the garage to be put away. A happy Leslie needs to find her mom as quickly as possible to tell her what a great afternoon she just had.
As she pops out of the car with her golf club in hand she starts sprinting for the house. Halfway to the porch she realizes that she can get there quicker if she doesn't have to carry her "putter." The club is tossed towards the bushes and she scampers up the steps.
Scott gets out of the car and watches Leslie go. A wry smile creases his face. This will be a day he will remember fondly for a long time.
Al Stephenson is The A-T's golf columnist.
Read his blog at: