My Craziest Golf Story Ever(1)

Filed under: by: golf clubs showcase

I had two birdies on one hole the other day. Wasn't playing two balls. Didn't break any rules. So how did it happen? The following is a true story...

In need of a relaxing round of golf after covering the PGA Championship in Tulsa, Okla., all week, I played hooky on Tuesday, eschewing a day at the office in favor of a 9:40 a.m. tee time with my buddy Matt at Gillette Ridge Golf Club, an Arnold Palmer design in Bloomfield, Conn.

Playing from the gold tees -- not quite the tips, but still a pretty fair test at 6,703 yards -- I was my usual inconsistent self, making a par here, a double there, my body still in "crouched over laptop" mode after a week of live blogging. Don't tell anyone, but I think I even carded a "septy" at one point -- a score only Angel Cabrera could love.

I was just starting to find a groove when we got to the fun 13th hole, a 273-yard par-4 that bends right to left, the green bordered by a wide bunker to its front left side. I had honors on the tee and pulled out my 3-wood, as previous attempts at this tee shot proved that even a well-struck golf driver could land on the front of the green and hop all the way through to some nasty rough guarded by tall trees.

Surveying the hole, I felt about a 10 mph breeze at my back, tried to block out the greenside bunker I've found so often in the past and noticed three small birds -- sparrows, maybe -- walking down the left side of the fairway.

I teed the ball low, took a half-practice swing and told myself to keep the clubface open to prevent the inconvenient hook I've developed over the years. Feeling confident, I took my stance, pulled the club back and -- wouldn't you know it? -- hit a low, searing, hooking line drive that seemed destined to find the bunker until ... POW!

Feathers. Everywhere. It looked like the bird spontaneously combusted. Or just exploded. Or imploded. It was sort of like that video of the Kingdome being reduced to rubble, only if the entire building was made out of feathers.

"Oh my God, you just Randy Johnson-ed that thing!" Matt screamed. He was right. Much like the spring training fastball that found an errant bird a few years back, my drive found this little guy like a heat-seeking missile. When the ball made contact, it had yet to hit the ground, instead nailing the bird where it should have found the short grass. After a few more exclamations of, "Holy s---!" and "No f------ way!" from each of us, Matt let 'er rip from the tee (left of the bunker, in the short rough, no animals harmed) and we hopped in the cart, ready to confirm our suspicions.