At the last US Open, I was able to get my then 16-year old nephew a standard bearer gig. When he wasn't walking the fairways he was with me and fogtb, Corey P. partaking in the festivities. Watching golf on TV is something I rarely do unless it's a major or if Tiger is contention. Shocking, I know. But watching live, especially a major like the Masters or the US Open is just riveting to me. Getting to spots where you are up close and just feet away from insert any pro's name here is just awesome. It's not being next to the guy, it's seeing what he does and how he does it. The "these guys are good" campaign is such an understatement. If you've never stood close to a Professional golfer and seen a tricky shot, or a yawner of a 100-yard sand wedge, executed up close and personal, you're missing out.
So back in '05, my pal and I are imbibing along the 18th fairway, right side, near the landing area of the drive. We had spent a good 90 minutes there, strategically situated next to a beer tent and in the shade. My nephew is there too after having beared his standard for some young up and comers. A ball lands way right and we see it immediately and head on over. From where we were, we couldn't see who hit the drive but we knew there was a 33% chance it was Tiger.
Sure enough....'twas Tiger. So having done this a few times before, I knew where we had to position ourselves before the masses arrived and we did. My nephew sent this pic to me today on Twitter....
"The photographer must have been standing right beside us when he took this pic. Remember this
A large portion of that dirt landed on my and my nephew's shirt, which was a Jeff Spiccoli kind of awesome. But to watch Tiger get to his ball, assess the situation as he did while not hearing or seeing one other person around him other than his caddie, talk it out with him for minutes, then to execute the shot which was hard times 10 (you can't see the tree and branches he has to navigate around/through/under) EXACTLY as they'd discussed WHILE hitting it so square in this god awful lie, and then proceed to the next shot as if he just finished tying his shoes....it just doesn't get old people.
It's unfortunate that Tiger won't be in the Sandhills this weekend, but we will.