Have you ever met a PGA Tour Pro? - Page 2
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If this morning is any indication I wouldn't have known it if I did meet one.
I was mowing the driving range and one of the boys that's an instructor came up with what appeared to be his parents. I stopped the tractor and chatted for a minute and asked the kid if a golf club I found on the range might be his.
Later, when I went to sign in my hours, I found out the father played on the PGA Tour and his name was Jim Gallagher. I still didn't think much of it and figured he might have been somebody that hung around for a little while and never finished very high.
Then when I got home I looked up his name and heck the guy won 5 times, finished 2nd in a PGA Championship, and was on Ryder Cup and President's Cup teams.
Of course all of that was before I even knew what golf was.
I've met Jim Furyk via Fluff. He's the only current PGA pro I have spoken with to any degree. In passing I have shook hands with Adam Scott, and few other UNLV alumni. Now from the old guys I have had conversations with Tommy Watson, and Jack Nicklaus to name a couple. Watson I met after a few tournaments he played in. Nicklaus I met at a golf course design meeting I was part of. I did meet, and shake hands with Palmer when I youngster. He and my dad had some sort business meeting. He asked me if I was going to be a golfer when I grew up. I told him NO, that I was going to play baseball. When I was working, I built some PGA guy's home, but I forgot his name.
I guess my biggest claim to fame was getting crushed by some little high school gal by 15 strokes. From the men's tees. I happen to get paired up with her and some I guy I think was her dad. Inbee Park was the youngster's name. What a fun round of golf I was fortunate to watch that day.
I've met a couple. Never had a unpleasant encounter. That's both in the context of tournaments and socially. And that's both the big names and the lesser lights. I'm sure there are jerks out there, and also decent guys having a bad day or feeling the pressure. I do generally wait until I'm introduced or there's some reason to interact.
I met a guy named Doug Labelle II once when I was in Michigan and he was playing the some tournament there and he ended up missing the cut. I was only 10 when this happened. He was actually in the hotel room next to mine, and I remember running out to his car to get his autograph (I could only tell he was a tour player based on the courtesy car with PGA Tour stuff all over it). I was in such a rush that I forgot to actually bring paper, so he pulled out his glove and signed it for me. He was a really nice guy, talked with me about golf for a couple minutes before he had to leave to catch his flight.
Are you a fan of Swing the Clubhead? Or is it simply happenstance?
BTW,Jones was a great teacher. On one leg. Like that Irish remittance man, the architect, up there in the PNW--a solicitor in Vancouver, BC, Vernon Macan, something like that--good with women, bad with money, an Edwardian father's nightmare. He and Jones both played to a four. After the Great War. One one leg.
Also, I was hiy by one of Jack Niclaus's tee shots on the 16th at Doral. I thinkthe year was 1984. Ben Crenshaw won that year. My brother-in-law got nailed by Sandy Lyle on the same hole. Was surprised how small he was. Also how high pitched his voice was. Both were very gracious.
I've met the Hill brothers (Dave & Mike); I caddied for a friend in a Nike.com qualifier and Omar Uresti was in the group; and I think I've posted it before but I used to play a course about an hour north of Houston and Charlie Sifford would be there occasionally. Sifford told some stories and he seemed like a great guy, it was an honor to meet him.