Old Dogs…or Golfers?


For those of you who have been paying attention to the pages of Grip it and Rip it, I make no claims of being of great golfer. Old golfer? Long time golfer? Dangerous golfer? Most of these are more appropriate monikers.

Oh, I’ve had my moments over the years. Like fish stories told by the old craggy fisherman, I’m not even so sure how accurate my stories of those moments actually are, but I digress.

Today, though, something happened that has never happened to me before and I will have no reason to exaggerate.

I have had a lot going on the last couple of weeks at work. Lots of stress, you know? Just trying to make sure I meet certain deadlines. I noticed that today was going to be the last “warm” day of the week. These days, 56 degrees is warm.

My wife is out of town for a few days and this created the perfect storm. I had to go golfing. Usually, this means only one thing, a bad round of golf.

That’s a ton of pressure. I get performance anxiety. I did mention that my wife was out of town right? I didn’t want any of you getting the wrong idea.

Anyway, I digress. If you haven’t noticed, this is a thing with me, but I digress… I walked into the pro shop of the University Golf Course (UGC), paid my greens fee, walked to the tee box, put on my golf shoes, grabbed the new Nike driver and here is what ensued:

Before continuing, please read the following disclaimer:

Warning: This post is intended for the hard core golfer only. All others may want to go to redirect to a blog about recycling or resume writing because I am about to bore the hell out of you.

Now that I have that out of the way, I will continue. (remember, I warned you)

Hole 1

1. Drive to the left of the trees but not to the #4 fairway

2. 8 iron over the trees to 20 feet of the pin

3. Sink putt

Birdie 3 (-1)

Hole 2

1. 8 iron to left of green, hole high

2. Sand wedge to 4 feet

3. Sink putt

Par 3 (-1)

Hole 3

1. Drive to left rough–blocked by tree

2. Pitching wedge to 50 yards (had to lay up to front of water)

3. Sand Wedge to 6 inches

4. Sink putt

Birdie 4 (-2)

Hole 4

1. Drive to right to 155

2. 8 iron to 20 ft.

3. Putt to 12 inches

4. Sink putt

Par 4 (-2)

Hole 5

1. 8 iron to 20 ft

2. Putt to 8 ft past (total misread)

3. Putt to 1 inch

4. Sink Putt

Bogey 4 (-1)

Hole 6

1. Drive to 110 just in the rough

2. Pitching Wedge to front edge of green

3. Chip to 12 ft

4. Putt to 6 inches past

5. Sink Putt

Bogey 5 (even)

Hole 7

1. 8 iron to 15 ft

2. Putt to lip of cup

3. Sink Putt

Par 3 (even)

Hole 8

1. Drive to 53 yrds (cut the corner)

2. Sand Wedge to 10 ft (flop shot over tree)

3. Putt to 8 inches

4. Sink Putt

Par 4 (even)

Hole 9

1. Drive to 225 right rough with trees blocking

2. 3 wood to 40 yds (pulled way to right, ball on cart path between trees and driving range net)

3. Punch 7 under trees to back edge of green

4. Putt to 2 inches (almost went in)

5. Sink Putt

Par 5 (even)

Today I did something that I have never done before. After years of trying, I parred the UGC. Yes everyone, I am writing this blog simply to brag……oh, and to say yes, you CAN teach an old, long-time, dangerous golfer new tricks.

So for those of you, like me, who have been playing the game of golf your entire life and have never met whatever golf goal it is that you have never met, I am here to tell you that it can be done. Grip it and Rip it. You never know what might happen.

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Todd Wolverton was born in Missoula and is a UM class of ‘88 alum. Todd and has been an avid golfer for over 40 years, but make no mistake, he’s no pro. He’s just a guy on the course yelling “fore”. Todd is the first to tell you he has his good days and his bad – more bad than good – but to him there are no bad days that include golf. Yes, Todd loves to tell stories and right here is where you will hear them–on a weekly basis. You can expect stories about his latest round, stuff he knows or thinks he knows, and interesting anecdotes about the the past and the present in the world of golf as he knows it…….Missoula area golf!