SportsChump and the eternal quest for 88

RomanosMy morning started out like any other.  A late night karaoke-fest followed up by a solid night’s sleep, then another nap after moving from bed to sofa.  The Chump likes to be well-rested before starting his day.

Responsibility-free until the weekend full of drink-slinging and entertaining, I have learned to cherish my Thursdays off.  This summer, I even established a new Thursday, pre-golf ritual: a late lunch at Romano’s (with their half-off bottles of wine) accompanied by a scrumptious chicken piccata, with no butter sauce to ensure my ensuing round of golf would not be interrupted by repeated visits to the men’s room.

This particular lunch, however, was different than most.  Upon entering the restaurant, I encountered a short-haired, olive-skinned, way too slender female sitting by herself out front.  Kind of odd-looking, I noticed she had a notebook and pen in her lap.  I could only assume she was as kooky as I since I also carry a pad and pen when dining alone, scribbling notes feverishly as the need arises.

Halfway through my piccata and pinot, I saw the woman enter the restaurant and step to the only other occupied table in the place, where two older ladies sat having lunch.  Out of the blue, the notebook-toter burst into song as if she had just penned an opera she wanted to try out for the crowd.  Her voice boomed impressively through the restaurant while the servers carried on as if nothing out of the ordinary was happening.  I had never seen this woman before and I had been there at least six times this summer.  Certainly this would bode for a magical round of golf.  If only the afternoon rain would stay away.

I paid for my tab after over-tipping, confident Bocelli was on my side.

Pebble Creek

I hustled off to my local course of choice, Pebble Creek, where one can play all the afternoon golf one wants for $15.  On the short drive over, I heard the Buccaneers had sold out the Saints game, their first Sunday home game televised in years.  I contacted my buddy within the organization and congratulated him on a job well done.  I emailed him the “Always Be Closing” clip of Alec Baldwin in Glengarry Glen Ross then watched it all the way through before teeing off.

Game face on!  With Bocelli and Baldwin on my side, today would most certainly be the day I shot an 88.  I wouldn’t take no for an answer.  After all, golfing is for closers.

Double Jack and Coke in hand, a big glass of water to hydrate and a cigar to get me through the round, I approached the first tee confidently.  I proceeded to double-bogie the first hole.  Not a problem.  I would just have to shake it off with a few pars, which I did on two and three.  Back on pace, only two over after three.

The fourth hole at Pebble Creek is unforgiving.  Water all along the left side, woods to the right, one must drive it down the middle of the fairway to have a look at the elevated green up and to the right, which one must carry another creek to reach.  I didn’t.  The fourth hole was my worst of the day.  A poorly hit, nine-iron put my ball in the drink leaving me with an eight, the dreaded snowman.  So much for classical music and sales pitches serving as pre-golf inspiration.

I was five over after four holes but I would not let that get me down.  A bogey, bogey, triple, bogey and bogey to finish the front left me with an unenviable 47.  My goal to shoot in the 80s was nearly out of reach.

rainy golf courseAppropriately, the sky grew cloudier, the weather nearly as bad as my golf game.  I’d be lucky to finish the round, which was probably a good thing.

I stepped back into the clubhouse to cool off, grab a refresher cocktail and set my mind right.  I’d need a solid back to even sniff an 88.  A double-bogey on the tenth hole was no way to start but a par on 11 was.  A double on 12 and a triple on 13 had all but sealed my fate.  At this point, I could only pray for rain.  There was no earthly way I could shoot in the 80s unless…

I parred the 14th, which I did.

And parred the 15th, which I did.

Wait a minute, I could do this!  If I could just par the remaining holes or even squeak out a birdie, my goal was still within reach.  The par five 17th is one of the easiest holes on the course, certainly birdie-able.  If I could just par 16 and 18 as well, I’d have my 88.

That’s when the rain came.  It looks like I had prayed too hard.  Lightning and thunder decorated the sky, enough to send even the most daring golfer back to the clubhouse for shelter.

But I waited.  And waited.

I sat under a tree along the right side of the fairway, waiting for the rain to pass.

I didn’t think the heavy stuff would come down for quite a while.  The good Lord would never disrupt the best game of my life.

Alas, he did.  The weather got worse.  The fairway became drenched, the conditions increasingly unplayable.  There was no way I could hit the ball clean off a water-soaked fairway.  Had there been a horn on the golf course, it would have sounded long ago.

I packed it in and called it a day, the rain washing away any chance at a personal best or at least that’s what I tell myself.  Rat farts.  My quest for 88 would have to wait.

Until next Thursday.  When I’ll try it again.

Wish me luck.

27 thoughts on “SportsChump and the eternal quest for 88

  1. Pingback: SportsChump and the eternal quest for 88 - BallHyped Blog Network, Golf | BallHyped Sports Blogs

  2. LOL, nice write. However, wtf are you doing with an umbrella for a lightening rod?

    Romano’s MG? Not bad for a chain. We have one here and good.

    Left me disappointed you didn’t take a shot at the Celine wannabee. Was she that skinny?

    Over tipping? That’s ok, what goes around ….etc. Oh hell, you get it better than myself.

  3. That’s too funny Rev. As I was reading about the approaching weather I could hear Bill Murray saying ” I’d keep playing the heavy stuff won’t be coming for a while” and then you cut to the clip.
    Thanks for the grin and good luck on the 88.

  4. Bets…

    You mean that’s bad? he he. Can’t be as bad as frantically running for cover with a nine-iron in my hand.

    And yeah, Celine was a little too lanky for me. Plus who the hell breaks out into random song. Oh wait, I do that too. Damn, she was PERFECT for me!

    Too bad the over-tipping karma didn’t help my scorecard.

  5. Dude, it’s completely in the scope of the rules. If play is suspended due to severe weather, the participants (meaning you), will start again when conditions are favorable for play (for you maybe next Thursday). The player(s) (that’s you again) will retain the same score and continue at the point whenever play was halted. Brotha, if if you ask me, I think you’re only a few strokes away from achieving your life long goal of the elusive 88. Keep ‘em straight and true!

  6. Chris

    Golf a sport known to emasculate and humble many men , who feel that their machismo is impervious .

    Speaking of impervious , are you going to spending $60-00 to see Money Mayweather throw down with Saul ‘Canilo ‘ Alarez (42-0, 30 KO’s) this weekend ? Money is guaranteed to walk away with a cool $41 million (guaranteed) win ,lose or draw .

    By the way, how many times can De La Hoya go into rehab and still deny that he has a problem, with “snow” (cocaine) and alcohol ?

    PPV , is now topping $60-00 for the bout and ringside premium seats at the MGM Grand start $12,500 – $15,000 (accommodation & limo service incl) . Mayweather and De La Hoya’s Golden Boy Promotions are joint promoters and they’re on course for over 2 million buys , not including the staging in theaters around the country . I’ll wait ’til next weekend watch the rerun on Showtime or hit a sports bar that’s showing the event and under-card . Boxing is now dying on its feet . Once Mayweather calls it quits, , we can release the choke hold on that $$tch !

    Bucs barely beat the deadline in avoiding the blackout of their home game against the Saints . I expect Brees to pick apart and shred Tampa’s defense .

    tophatal …………..

  7. Chris .

    No truth to the rumor that Jay-z’s next CD will be entitled ‘Holy S#it what the ##%k have I done ‘ ? It’s meant to be a collaboration with his high-profiled NFL client Geno Smith . Jigga should snuff out that contract and return the commission to the Jets’ starting quarterback .

  8. Black…

    I think from the last time we played to the next, you’ll notice some dramatic improvements in my game.

    Still drinking the same impressive amount too.

    Bernadette soon. Just say the word.

  9. I’ll be working, Al, but I hear the challenger may give Money some fits. Whaddaya think? Does the redhead stand a chance?

    I’m looking forward to seeing what this defense can do against the Saints on Sunday. I know the Bucs sales force has been working long and hard to ensure butts are in the seats.

    We’ll just see if the players can accommodate.

  10. Chris

    You’ll have more chance of finding accommodation at a Bucs game than at a Holiday Inn for the greater part of this season .

    The Bucs have a sales’ force ? LOL,LOL ,LOL !!! Paula Deen’s image consultants must also be on their (Bucs) payroll .

    Alvarez could give ‘ Money ‘ Mayweather some trouble but I get the feeling , that this fight if it doesn`t go the distance will end up with Mayweather winning either by a stoppage or knockout by the eighth round or tenth at the latest.

    tophatal ……………..

  11. How old is Money May, Al, and how many good years does he have left in him?

    And what of the up-and-coming boxers that will take his place, the future champions?

    Is there anyone on the horizon that can breathe any life into the sport?

  12. Floyd Mayweather is thirty-six years old and were he eighty-six , he still would have whipped Saul Alvarez’s @ss !. The fight went the distance and Money hardly broke sweat and for that display , he will walk away with $41 million , with perhaps another $30 million on top , after the usual deductions are taken for the cost of staging and promoting the event . A geriatric could have put up a better showing than Alvarez , who was never in this bout at any time . There are simply no fighters in the light welterweight , welterweight or light middleweight division, good enough to test Floyd Mayweather . The sad fact is , once he retires the sport will be essentially dead .

    Promoters such as De La Hoya , Don KIng Bob Arum , Shelley Finkel and the Dan Goosen have made the sport become more like the entrails of a dead animal or the feces from a herd of elephants . And some of the opinion that MMA is barbaric and irrelevant ? I believe the sport of boxing is irrelevant , mismanaged and way too corrupt .
    Only the unenlightened who have never watched (bout) or comprehend MMA would have that opinion .

    tophatal ………….

  13. The story wasn’t the fight, Al.

    The story was the one judge who declared it a draw.

    Any idea which fight she was watching? Did you hear Teddy Atlas go OFF on her afterwards?

  14. Golf is a game where drinking is not only permitted but IMO it’s a requirement… to loosen up my swing of course. Likewise I’ve yet to break 90 but I don’t consider it impossible… I just seem to sweat out my lubrication too soon…

    I predicted the Fayweather results as could any betting man… the matador always beats the bull. Fayweather was too fast and too polished… and boxing is already dead with the exception of Fayweather and the Klitschko brothers… all of the young fighting talent long ago moved onto MMA. No young lion worth his salt wastes time on boxing except as one of the 4-5 disciplines required for MMA success.

    Every boxer who enters the MMA octagon gets his ass handed to him… boxing is dead… it just has yet to stop twitching

  15. Tree…

    I finally got my 88. I hate to spoil the surprise but details are forthcoming.

    And I agree with you about the sorry state of boxing. If it weren’t bad enough that we have no prominent fighters, we have judges screwing up the scorecards.

  16. Chris

    In my piece on the bout you’ll note that I mentioned that concerning Cynthia Ross and the fact that Nevada State Athletic Commission Executive Director Keith Kizer believes that Ross’ reputation is above reproach . I am sorry but this was only that judge’s eighth fight as the adjudicator of a title bout . WTF !

    This similar idiocy also took place in the Pacquiao Tim Bradley bout and a judge there . I am sorry but there is nothing good happening in the state of Nevada and the sport of boxing . Thankfully , the genre of MMA /UFC has yet to go down this route of sheer idiocy and ridicule ! rt

    “Reading is fundamental , so too is pitching Can someone remind the Rays of that The Rangers are now leaving Maddon and the boys for dead as the wildcard race in the AL is now really heating up . The Rays are definitely exploring different ways of shooting themselves in the foot and out of the race altogether .

    Texas took it to the Rays last night . Let me pose this question where are the damn fans of this organization ? The Trop was almost as silent as a wake . There are no die-hard supporters of the Rays , just a bunch of apathetic hangers-on , who have no real passion to support the team wholeheartedly . Par for the course when it comes to the support of all three professional sports’ franchise in the locale. Your thoughts on that ?

    Way too many damn excuses are being made concerning the support of all three organizations .

    As and when you’re ready let me know what you think ?

    No news is good news unless it’s happening in the world of sports

    tophatal ………….

  17. Al…

    You’d think boxing would be able to find someone a little more qualified to monitor their fights, but then again, we are talking about boxing here. Why should anything surprise us at this point?

    And you can’t win without hitting the ball, man. Rays are already behind 2-0 in game three of that series. They better not drop three of these four. They’re facing Darvish tomorrow.

  18. Chris

    If my maternal grandmother wasn’t dead I would have paid for her flight from Montego Bay Jamaica to Las Vegas Nevada to judge the fight rather than have that myopic ##tch Cynthia Ross make a spectacle of herself . Now apparently she has asked the State Athletic Comission for an indefinite leave of absence ? How does that work might I ask ?


    Look , this is the last frigging thing the city of London needs !
    . We have over half a dozen soccer teams . No way in hell , they need an NFL franchise and in particular not the Jacksonville Jaguars . Apparently this is now said to be Goodell’s new pet project . I know that Jags’ owner Shahid Khan has family in my old home city/town , but the buck has to stop somewhere .

    Relocate the Jags to Paris , France , specifically , North East Paris, where I know that they will be appreciated by the community there . I hear it is fun this time of year and the Arab/ French population are always appreciative of a good laugh .

    The Rays can barely hit half their own …. body weight , so I do not expect them to fare any better than they are currently doing .

    The Browns’ quarterback Brandon Weeded needs to see a hand specialist . Spankin’ the monkey again was he ? Because that injury could not have come about from his quarterback play this or over the past few seasons .

    As and when ready , a college football piece .

    Trouble in paradise

    tophatal …………………

  19. It’s not that the town couldn’t support a franchise, Al. I’m sure they’d have enough tickets sold well into the future.

    It’s the damn travel time. How do you expect a team to travel from San Diego to London? I just don’t see that happening.

    Although, stranger things have happened.

    Big win for the Rays last night. Let’s see how they hit Darvish tonight.

  20. $15 for unlimited afternoon golf? Yeesh. Guess it’s time to move to Florida. Here in California that is the minimum cost for the cart.

  21. Nice course too, Drew.

    Afternoon golf in Florida is cheap in the summer time because nobody ever plays. It’s too hot.

    Plus I know the guys on the course so they don’t bitch when I sneak out for an extra 18.

  22. Pingback: Sports Chump » Did someone say something about an 88?

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