Marshal Paul

Marshal Paul

There's always Hope

I volunteered to act as a marshal at the Bob Hope Chrysler Classic golf tournament again this year. This makes my third year to work at this event. If they give me the same assignment next year, I'm going to demand combat pay!

my post on first fairway
First fairway. Looking back at the first tee and clubhouse from my post. Note the trees lining both sides of the fairway. Trouble! (Click picture to enlarge.)

Previously at the Bob Hope, I've been assigned to a green, a cushy and interesting job. This year they sent me to the first fairway to be a spotter. Oh, mercy — I have a hard enough time tracking my own golf ball, much less keeping track of everybody else's.

To make bad matters worse, the skies the first two days were leaden gray, and the balls blended in perfectly. I could see the ball leave the tee, but as soon as it got above the clubhouse (right behind the tee), it absolutely disappeared. One ball that disappeared reappeared right on the ground in front of me, whence it bounced up to whack me on the arm and the deflect back onto the fairway. The pro thanked me; if the ball had not hit me it would have ended up in the middle of the next fairway. Of course, if the ball had bounced the other way, I doubt that he would have been so gracious.

Then there was the matter of the amateur players in each foursome. Some of them were good golfers, to be sure. But some were atrocious golfers, and their tee shots went every which way. Many ended up colliding with trees or in an adjacent fairway.

Finally, there was the matter of the parallel fairways, the ninth lying right alongside the first. This meant that for most of the day, errant golf balls were coming from both directions. Incoming!