SI Vault
Giles Tippette
October 10, 1983
Perhaps it comes to all men, or perhaps just to middle-aged former athletes. I'm talking about the Just One More Time Syndrome: Score one more touchdown, ride one more bull, hit one more home run.
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October 10, 1983

An Aging Jock Takes A Last Fling At Stardom On A Par-688 Golf Course

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I guess that's when I realized I was getting plenty tired. Bill gave me a strange look and said, "Why should a druggist know anything about cattle?"

Finally, our policeman jumped the fence and fired his revolver in the air a couple of times. The cattle departed.

But they'd managed to bury the ball in the rain-soaked ground to the point where it was barely visible. The mayor calmly gave us a ruling. "This is rough. Play it as it is or take a stroke penalty," he said.

Bill said, "Say whaaat! Where in the PGA or the USGA rules does it talk about cows stepping on a golf ball?"

The mayor was unmoved, and we took the one-stroke penalty.

By now we were gaining on par, and I figured we were just about even. But we wanted to be as many strokes under as we could. And time was becoming a problem. To get to the golf course in Brady we were going to have to go directly through town, turn left at the courthouse and go another three miles out Highway 87 to the golf course.

To do that we required the cooperation of the officials and the police of Brady because traffic on the highway is extremely heavy. I had arranged in advance with the city manager of Brady, Steve Nordholt, for police to have the traffic held up as we hit through. Otherwise we would be reduced to rolling 20-and 30-foot putts along the side of the road and there would go our chance to break par and make money for the hospital. I'd naively told Nordholt we would hit the outskirts of Brady by 3 p.m., and he'd said he'd have the police meet us at the city limits.

At three o'clock we were 15 miles from Brady. And then came the snake.

I was seriously tired. I went stumbling down the bank off the highway toward where one of our fore caddies had indicated the ball was. I suddenly heard that dry whir. I did not pause. I immediately executed a 180-degree turn and quit the area. There are several things I am more afraid of than a rattlesnake, but I forget what they are. I immediately went to the ambulance and started taking oxygen, while Jack Boring went down and killed it with a shotgun. The corpse was removed and Bill took the next shot.

By the time we were five miles out of Brady I figured we were 50 strokes under, but we still had the downtown to negotiate, and I didn't know if we were going to get the police escort or not. We were so late that, so far as I knew, the cops had all gone to supper.

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