THE ONE WHERE A MAN GETS A HOLE-IN-ONE, JUST BECAUSE HE TRIES NOT TO
One day there was a beer cart girl sitting in her beer cart beside the fifth tee box. As she counted her tips, she wondered why she couldn’t get where she wanted to in life.
While meditating on this complex question, two middle-aged men pulled up in their golf cart. They stopped, each grabbed a club, and walked onto the tee box. One man wore a white flat cap with a red pompom on top; a red, green, and grey argyle sweater; white pants and shoes; and argyle socks pulled up to his knees. The other man had an Old Milwaukee in his hand and was wearing a stained white t-shirt, grey sweat shorts, and flip flops.
After a few seconds, the first man – the one with the pompom on his hat – took a few steps forward, bent over, and pressed a tee into the ground. He placed a clean white ball on top of the tee, then stood up and stared at the green. “How long is this hole playing today?” he asked.
The first man, the one with the pompom on his hat, walked up to the intermediate tees, bent over, and pressed a white tee into the ground until it was a quarter of an inch out of the grass. He placed his ball on the tee, stepped back three steps, and stared at the green. “How long is this hole playing today?”
“No idea,” the man in sweat shorts said. “Looks something like an eight iron from back here.”
“Can you check the score card please? Or grab my rangefinder from the cart?” asked the man with the pompom on his hat.
“Use the club you have in your hand. Just hit your ball,” replied the man in sweat shorts as he took another slug of beer.
“I have no idea if I have the right club. I need to know the exact yardage,” pleaded the man with the pompom on his hat.
“Fine. But don’t tell me,” said the man in sweat shorts. He pulled the scorecard off the steering wheel of the golf cart and handed it to the man with the pompom on his hat.
The man with the pompom on his hat studied the yardage on the score card. “What color is the flag?”
“Purple,” said the man in sweat shorts.
“Screw off. Seriously,” retorted the man with the pompom on his hat. It looked like he was starting to get agitated.
“Looks pretty blue to me,” the man in sweat shorts confessed.
It appeared the man with the pompom on his hat made a decision on the yardage. He walked back to the golf cart and rummaged through his bag. He picked up an iron, then put it back. Picked up another iron and put it back. “It’s between clubs for me. Should I go with a soft seven or a full eight?”
“Whatever you do, just do it quick. We’re never going to get off the course if you do this on every tee box,” said the man in sweat shorts.
From where the beer cart girl was sitting in her beer cart, she couldn’t see what club the man with the pompom on his hat decided to use. If she had to guess based on the light practice swings he was taking, it looked like he was going for a soft seven.
The man with the pompom on his hat approached his ball. “Today’s the day. Today’s the day I get my ace,” he whispered just loud enough for the beer cart girl to hear.
His iron moved slowly down and in behind his clean white ball. He looked out at the green and back down to his ball. Waggle one. He looked at the green again, did a half backswing, and the iron went back down. He followed that up with another waggle. He took a deep breath in, the iron swept away from the ground all the way behind his head, and he came down towards the ball much harder than any of his practice swings.
The ball took off straight towards the pin with a rush of air. For a second it looked promising. Then the spin on the ball imparted by a club that struck it from the outside in caught up to its forward velocity. Like a boomerang it started veering hard to the right. The man with the pompom on his hat sliced the ball so aggressively it almost landed on the next fairway. What followed was a stream of expletives the beer cart girl had only heard her grandfather use when battling his three TV remotes.
“You’ll get a good look from there,” the man wearing sweat shorts said with a grin.
“Don’t be an asshole,” the man with the pompom on his hat grumbled.
The beer cart girl in the beer cart sniggered.
The man wearing the sweat shorts walked up to the tee and dropped his ball on the grass. He took one look at the green to position his feet and swung. He took a chunk of grass the size of a beaver’s tail out of the tee box, but the ball sounded like it was struck well and left the tee box headed straight for the pin. It soared high into the air. The man in the sweat shorts didn’t watch his shot. He walked up to the chunk of grass he had removed and placed it back where it came from. The beer cart girl lost the ball against the backdrop of clouds in the sky. A dull thud on the green told her where it landed. As she turned her head down to the green, she heard it clank against the pin and drop into the hole.
“You’ve got to be kidding me,” said the man with the pompom on his hat as he slammed his club into his bag.
“My fifth one this summer!” said the man with the sweat shorts as he chuckled. “Every time I walk up to the ball, I tell myself I’m going to hit the worst shot of my life and something like that ends up happening.”
The beer cart girl released the break on the beer cart and sped off towards the fourth tee box. The more she thought about what the last words she heard the man in sweat shorts say, the more it gave her a headache.
MORAL: If you want something, try your best to fail.
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