It’s not often I get to have a day without any kids. But a little while ago I was able to do just that and got to take advantage of the time to play some golf with an old friend. It was a beautiful day and my buddy had 2 of his friends come and join us. The four of us were having a great time on the golf course. Somewhere around the 6th hole one of my buddy’s friends hurried up to the tee box and got ready to hit his first shot while the rest of us were getting our drivers out of our golf bags and heading toward him.
As we are walking toward him he let rip with his tee shot. It was a beautifully struck shoot. The golf ball started out low and you could instantly tell it was going to continue to rise. It was the type of shot I love to hit. Since it starts low and gradually rises it loses little to no distance doing a high arcing loop and when it hits the ground it gets a great roll. It should have been a shot anyone would have been proud to hit. There was just one problem…
He hit the ball about 15 degrees to the left. Now that doesn’t seem like a lot and maybe on another hole it wouldn’t have been such a big deal, but on this particular hole, about 20 yards away, there just so happened to be a dead palm tree 15 degrees to the left. His screaming line drive shot hit the tree and made the exact “thud” you would expect to hear from a golf ball hitting a dead, slightly rotten palm tree. What happened next is what made this particular shot one I’ll never forget.
Because the tree was rotten, the golf ball didn’t bounce off very fast. The ball just sort of slowly lobbed itself off the tree right back toward the guy who hit the shot. It was such a slow motion bounce-back that the guy could have easily just stepped to the right, stepped to the left or he could have even just caught it. He chose option 4. He turned around and tried to outrun it by running directly at the 3 of us walking up toward him.
His eyes were wide with terror, he had thrown his arms up into the air and had commenced screaming like a 6 year old girl. Approximately 3 steps into his poor decision, the ball plopped him in the middle of his back. He let out another scream and hit the ground like he had just been assassinated. Now understand, I’m not one of those guys who finds great humor in others’ injuries. But in this instance I had to take a knee and it was at least a minute before I could regain my breath. Even now I can’t think about that shot without smiling at least a little.