I haven’t typed anything in about 36 hours now. Why? Because my hands have just thawed. I couldn’t wait to get back home from Orlando to Salt Lake. I couldn’t wait to get back to 4200 feet above sea level, 12 degrees farther north in latitude than Orlando FLORIDA so I could WARM up. The big decompression day after my biggest and most exhausting PGA Show ever turned out to be nearly a complete train wreck, except for the fact that I got to spend it with two great pals.
I should have known when we couldn’t find a Starbucks within a 500 mile radius yesterday morning that it was going to be a rough day.
Thanks to our pals at Falcon’s Fire for playing host to this year’s battle. Unfortunately for us it was so cold and windy we were battling hypothermia, rather than battling the golf course. The winds were high and the temps down. After blading three irons on the range, numbing my hands, then hitting two low worm-burners left with my driver, I was ready for play after a two month golf hybernation… Right.
Time for some excuses
Until yesterday I hadn’t played golf for almost two months. That is like John Daly going 6 minutes without cracking a beer, Obama going 34 seconds with saying the word “change” and Tiger going three hours without picking up a busty waitress at Perkins… Oh, did I just go down that road? My apologies.
On the first hole I hit the fairway with my driver and I was 100% fairways hit for the decade. That’s as good as it was ever going to get. That stat would soon vanish, as would many of my shiny Srixons and Bridgestones in my bag. My confidence as well as my cash faded away as well, as I flamed out in the frozen wind blown tundra of Orlando.
I didn’t manage even one solid iron shot. It could be because my hands were frozen, or that I hadn’t played golf in weeks, or that I’d just worked my ass (or lack of one, since someone told me at the show that I didn’t have one) off for days at the PGA Show. It could just be because I’m a hack.
OGB and Into The Grain are fun cats and I hope to play many holes of golf with them in the future. I gladly handed my hard earned cash to Dave (OGB) for his triumphant victory, and like a good sport congratulated him on his victory while watching him celebrate. The taste of defeat is bitter, but a character builder for sure.
16th hole fireworks
Because we were so cold and our scores were all blowing up, John and Dave decided to have some fun on the 16h. Could John, a right handed player, beat the left handed Dave with his own clubs on a hole? The video below contains the answer. Be sure to watch for the incredible green side bunker shot.
I’m happy to report that the Salt Lake International Airport has free wifi. How cool. It isn’t terribly fast but I’m able to make an update about the next leg of the HOG world tour, which starts now.
Southwest could be the best airline for golfers
I’m currently waiting for my Southwest Airlines flight to Denver. Lunch in Denver airport then flight to Orlando. The reason I mention Southwest, is because I don’t think there is a better airline for golfers. Though Though I have a bunch of Delta frequent flier miles, I prefer SWA because they don’t charge for bags. The same set of bags I’m taking to Orlando, with my Ogio Monster, would cost almost $100 EACH WAY on Delta.
I’m stoked for this show and the new set of experiences I’ll be logging over the next 6 days. Once again, if you want to stop by and say hello I’m in the Sumi-g booth #3629, near the new product center.
I’d love to say hello to any of you HOG “patrons” (stole that from Augusta National) who will be at the PGA Show. I know a few pals who will be there and I’m looking forward to seeing you all! I’ll be working the Sumi-G booth all week, #3629. Come by and say hello.
I’ve got a tee time Sunday morning at 8:15. Anyone interested? The rematch of Mediaguru vs the Orlando Golf Blogger will be taking place. Will OGB get his $1 back? I have another $1 that says a resounding NO!
One of the biggest golfing greats I never got the chance to meet is Bobby Jones. But I did get to meet the best golfer ever a few years ago with my son. We met Jack Nicklaus and got to talk to him for a while. Jack was nothing but nice. I was so nervous I could hardly talk. What a treat that was.
I got Jack to sign a couple of autographs for me. One was on a Masters flag from the 2005 Masters, Jack’s last Masters and where Tiger Woods won. The other autograph was on a St. Andrews flag from the 2005 British Open, Jack’s last official tournament. Coincidentally Tiger won that one too.
I got to see Jack play golf in person three times. One of those times was in a then Senior Tour event where he was paired up with Arnold Palmer and Lee Trevino. Lee got in most of the talking…
Happy Birthday Jack
Jack, I wish you the best and a very happy birthday. Thanks for being so nice when my son and I met you. That means a lot and shows the kind of character which I think is lost in some players these days. And thanks for all the great moments in golf history you authored.
Last year during the PGA Show my last product interview was with Sumi-g, a very hip golf accessory company which had just launched. As I talked to the president of the company Marius, I’d found out that we had a lot in common. First, we’re both golf junkies with similar handicap levels. Second, we lived in the same town. Third, we’d been playing the same course every Thursday for years, our tee times about 45 minutes apart.
Over the last year I’ve done numerous posts and product reviews about Sumi-g head covers, belts and other accessories. I’ve played dozens of rounds of golf with Marius, and our friendship developed over the year.
Toward the end of 2009 I’d started looking for a new gig, as my other business world, the media duplication industry, was on life support. Technological advances (digital downloads etc) and the economy were putting that business model to sleep. I knew I had to jump ship before the boat sank. Then one day Marius approached me and asked if I’d join Sumi-g. I guess he’d gotten to know me well enough and through seeing how excited I was about the product line in person and on my web sites, saw some value in what I could offer. I decided to take a leap of faith and jump from my sinking ship into a new position as national sales manager for the company.
Not To Worry
My web ventures like Hooked On Golf Blog and The Golf Space are happy and healthy and it aren’t going anywhere.
As far as a conflict of interest goes that is an interesting thing to ponder. If some company who competes with Sumi-g sends me a head cover or a belt or accessory to review, what will I say? I’ve gone over that in my head for a while. It really comes down to what I’ve always done, which is call ’em like I see ’em. If the thing is awesome, I’ll write about it. If it sucks, then I’ll write that too.
2010 PGA Show
Yes I’ll be at this year’s PGA Show. But most of that time will be spent working the booth. I’ll throw my press credential on a run a round a bit, but this year I won’t be able to do the massive coverage I’ve done in previous years. I will be blogging about the show regardless so there will be plenty of info to chomp on. I’ll also have other insights on what it is like behind the scenes and what is up at the Wednesday demo day. I’ll be attending that for the first time.
So if you want to come by and say hello, ask for me me in booth #3629. That’s where I’ll be most of the show.