"If I'd had a game," says Feherty, "it certainly would have."
Feherty takes a half-dozen chip shots to the 18th hole, about 60 yards away. The last one lands about two feet from the flag.
"You look great," says a security guy.
"Thank you," says Feherty. "You're a very attractive man yourself."
Stockton, the corporate king, preaches the heavy-mental game. Feherty comes off as more of a hacker's kindred spirit. "Ninety percent of the time this game is a nightmare; you're either topping the ball or sending it into the trees," he says. "But the feeling you get after hitting a shot right is the closest you can get to a sporting orgasm."
He imparts a few words of wisdom about shanking ("the easiest shot to hit by accident and the hardest to hit on purpose") and the sand wedge. "You may think I'm going to change your game," he tells the throng, "but it's more likely I'll simply screw it up. No matter what I show you, by the time I'm done, you're still going to suck."
THE FAIRWAY MINGLE
Given three hours to mix with 13 groups of golfers, Feherty wheels around the course as if he were in the last lap of the Indy 500 time trials. "I've done 32 groups over this amount of time," he says. "I felt as if I was in a drive-by. After a while you run out of cheerfulness and your attitude turns to pure evil. It's like, Just write the check!"
For now Feherty is brimming with bonhomie. A man in a shirt that seems cut from an early Cubist canvas asks him for his opinion of on-air sidekick Gary McCord. "It's like working with a chimp," he says, then tries to soften the blow. "I mean, a chimp that plays golf very well."
Feherty takes wicked pleasure in knocking others. "I can't affect anybody's game, really," he says. "I mean, not on one hole. I'm not going to significantly affect anybody's life, so I might as well screw with them. I love watching people suffer, as long as they don't get hurt. Badly."
Today's golfers are suffering, all right. The fairways are abuzz with banana balls and bladed shots and chili dips. "Let's see what you've got," Feherty tells a man so large that he has his own field of gravity.