LPGA Q-School – The Fifth Major

November 30, 2009

Monday: No work to be had out of the parking lot. Three of us were looking but we all gave up early. I relieved the pain of disappointment at the Chinese Buffet in Deland. A hefty helping of comfort food cures all. If you can’t associate Chinese with comfort food, it all depends on one’s level of comfort.

Party time: The annual pre-tournament feast (this year it was pasta and meat balls) at the Paolini abode was held last night. It was a smaller turnout than usual but we didn’t mind. More for us. Special thanks goes out to Lorie Kane for the brewskies.

Promises, promises: Of course, a few Q-School stories permeated the festivities with the best one involving an escalating bonus as each day of limited success terminated. Two years ago, $500 was offered for an LPGA exempt card to one caddie, of a Korean hopeful, at the beginning of the tournament. It then jumped to a grand after the first round. At the completion of round two, $1500 extra was on the table but didn’t help. He was fired the next day and replaced by a parent. “My mom make me feel more calm” was the explanation.

And then there were … only 107 human life forms teeing it up this week after a slew of players withdrew. When we were in Houston, the field was 122. Looks like many will be rolling the dice on their status for next season. Of course, some would ask “What season?”

New toy: The Verizon Droid just hit the market and also made its debut in Looperville. One of the guys has one and I must say, it’s quite impressive. Just wish I could afford it.

Place your bets: The jockeys escorted their thoroughbreds from the paddock and onto the track this morning but differentiating who was on which saddle was impossible without a program. Here’s a partial list to help sort it all out.

Caddie Player
Bully Kim Welch
Louie Paolini Lisa Meldrum
Loopy Lopez Jamie Hullett
Mark Scott Azahara Munoz
John Schiffer Ashleigh Simon
Greg Sheridan Jenny Suh
Lane Kjeldsen Kris Tschetter
Motion Carolina Llano
Matt Gelczis Young-A Yang
Becky Morgan Diana D’Alessio
Sam Hinshaw Esther Choe
Dale Jones Adrienne White
Chad Payne “ICE” Aree Song
Chris Benz Paola Moreno
Carl Laib “Machine” Kathleen Ekey
Portland John Pornanong Phatlum
Audrey Gerdes Nicole Hage
Worth Blackwelder Mallory (his daughter)
Wayne Uieda Miriam Nagl

Is This What It’s Come To?

November 27, 2009

Desperate times call for desperate measures. It is no different for career loopers who are not lucky enough to have a top player. Our Swiss cheese schedule makes it difficult for some to make ends meet so work that would be normally eschewed, is accepted at every opportunity. I would like to share the following email with you to illustrate my point. By no means do I share the same views with the company mentioned. In fact, I shop there many, many times during the year. To each his own.

Another gem from “The Caddie Chronicles”

I hope this finds you all well. This is just a tiny look into my new winter life as a Walmart employee. YES, that is correct, I am working for one of the worst things to ever happen to America!!

Allow me to paint the picture first. I, Anonymous, am broke! Duh! So I signed up for one of those temporary agencies and was hired the same day to do a to six week seasonal job at Walmart. Wait, it gets better. BTW I just finished my 2nd work day moments ago so I am writing this to not forget all the joy this job brings.

I am still a bit confused on when and what I actually do but this much I know, I will be working from 3pm until midnight, Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday and one more week day which I will assume is Wednesday. My work assignment is in the heart of the ghetto (I was told a year or two ago, two employees went at each other with box cutters but that could just be an urban myth). Every time I hear clean up on aisle six, I cant help think another fight just got ugly. I will tell you that I am one of the OLDEST temp employees they have. I am definitely one of the whitest. Now, I don’t really have much of a problem with that because broke is broke.

Even though this was only my second day, I noticed I have an advantage with my pale exterior along with many disadvantages. My biggest advantage is that my superiors all assume I am a regular employee and never really ask anything of me. I normally work very hard in jobs like this so the time usually flies by (which it doesn’t here) so I am constantly wandering around the store looking for someone to tell me what to do. I am sure many of you could do that! The other people I work with either know each other or since they are all about twenty-something, they talk and joke which is fine. I’m too old I guess and no one really wants to talk much with me. Yesterday, (my 1st evening) my crew was assigned to the lawn and garden center to transform it into the Christmas palace. We took pallets full of X-mas crap, made everyplace but the US, and opened them up and put them on the shelves we had set up that afternoon. The guys I worked with were nice enough but I assume have never been in any type of store before. They felt it was ok to put up anything, anywhere, anyway. Now, I didn’t want to come on like the “old white know it all guy” so at first I played dumb (like that’s a stretch). After awhile, after moving the same stuff to different places, I decided to speak up. I tried making it seem like it was a group thing so it went ok, but sheesh! The US is full of some of the dumbest human beings ever made.

I will say that I haven’t lifted that kind of heavy box stuff in a very long time but I continued to do it quickly because everyone else seemed ok with just standing around. It was too boring. So you can imagine this morning I was very sore and tired.

Something else I had forgotten about was the mandatory 1 hr off for lunch, meaning I get to spend nine hours there each day while getting paid for eight. Lunch is unbearably dull.

At 5:30pm we all had to go to a store meeting where the “real white guys” tell everyone what "great deals" are coming up for “Black Friday" (crap like a 115 inch TV for $352 or some thing like that) and then after the three head white guys make inside jokes to each other about how great Walmart is, we have to do this group clap and Walmart chant thing. I had never seen that before (I could be killed if this information gets out) and refused to take part. Remember, you didn’t hear this from me. It seemed like it was out of a “made for TV” movie about cults. It was this shout and response thing like, Gimme a W, Gimme an A, Gimme an L, blah, blah, blah. What’s that spell? Who’s #1? All the while you clap in unison.

I so wished I was religious and could bring up the false idol commandment thingy to get out of it. Today, I never went to that thing. I guess they do it every shift. Amazing what they want from you for $8.80 per hour. I told one guy I don’t chant like that in church so I wont be doing that here.

One of the disadvantages to being so unique is that since I am wearing my name badge so people keep coming up to me asking where stuff is. I HAVE NO IDEA? Hell, I haven’t spent more than one hour of my entire life inside all the Walmarts combined and now someone is asking me where the Velveeta cheese logs are while I’m standing in the greeting card aisle. Unlike many other people, I will either walk them around or will try to find someone who knows. People normally get frustrated by then and leave since there never is anyone around. Oh, the people that shop at this particular store are not the upper crust of society. Many are HUGE and use the shopping cart to rest parts of their body on as they glide thru the store. An amazing number of shoppers seem to limp. What’s with that? English in non existent and their carts are full of children, and I mean full. Maybe Walmart sells children? I just don’t know which aisle they are in…yet!

My very first job yesterday was to look for a missing two year old. Not sure if she was ever found BTW. Today, two people asked me where they could find the paper, that you hang from your ceiling, that you twist. I didn’t know that was an item we sold so I went with them to places I thought it might be. Twisting sections? Ceiling paper sections? At first we had no luck but then I stumbled upon something called Crepe paper. DUH! She said she wanted to hide her ceiling. I don’t want to say anything bad about them but… I was wondering who was going to put that paper up? Couldn’t they just as easily throw food on the floor. Who would notice the ceiling then? They were amazed I found it. BTW, (secret) I went to the cards and birthday area.

Another thing, I have been there two days and I have yet to meet my supervisor. When we come in I go to an office area sign-in and put my time down all at once. Today, I took advantage of this by leaving at 11 and not midnight because no one was going to question me as I walked out with the others (he’s old, he must be leaving now). I am racked with guilt so I wont do that again FYI.

Today, myself and a young Hispanic gentleman, I would tell you his name but I could not pronounce it, were assigned to take what was left of the Christmas crap and put it up in the boxes it was shipped in. The most upper shelf of the lawn and garden/Christmas palace center would be the final destination. Again, when you look at a shelf, you will notice that similar or identical items are placed directly with, or next to, those same items. This I believe is so when someone wants that item, BAM! There it is, or is not. My co-worker had a difficult time grasping that concept. As I handed him some heavy boxes of crap, he would put one to his left, one to his right, sideways, long ways upside down and behind him.  Finally, I tried to show him, without preaching, how it should go. Didn’t turn out perfect but it worked out. It also took him a long time to pick up on the fact that I would struggle handing him some 40 pound boxes while going up the ladder and that a little help would be nice. He finally got it, as I nearly tipped the ladder over, almost falling to my doom. Made him chuckle.

The guy who showed us what to do yesterday and the first part of today seemed very surprised I returned. He kept telling me that I was doing a great job and that’s what Walmart looks for in hiring full timers, and to stick with it. He was sure I would get hired (so I have that going for me). Who knows, maybe $9.38 isn’t too far behind!! Hope I don’t jinx it.

We did that for a while until I as fed up waiting for my co worker to decide what box went where. After that, I took charge. Busted through it and was done. Some guy comes back and asks us how much more we had left. Six guys all stare at him and I say almost done. He asks if anyone would help him? Again, after the 15 second staring contest, I volunteered and bolted away from my buddies and was sent to the meat department to help there.

Well, when I get there I was informed I wasn’t needed, so back I go looking for that guy to tell me where to go now. He sends me to the produce guy who says he doesn’t want my help but reluctantly takes me. He shows me how to stock the produce area. He was an ok guy. It’s not big time science but much easier than pushing 40 pound boxes up 10 feet while balanced on a ladder.

It’s now about 7pm and the store had lots of grocery shoppers. I helped a Korean guy find bread that was cut into squares! Then helped a woman, in seven inch heels, find the Tapia family bag and a man wanted to know where to find AA batteries. At 8:30 I took lunch. Thank god for that delicious McDonalds. Forty-five minutes later, being bored, I went back to work.

The produce guy was done so I did three laps until I found a different guy who said he had a lot of temps to look after. Told me to just go ahead and push a cart around and take the stuff that wasn’t in the right aisles, put it in the cart and take it to customer service. They would handle it from there.

It is amazing how much food is stolen here. I’m finding half-empty bags of everything everywhere. Pulled products to the front of the shelves and straightened up (people are pigs). Did that for about forty-five minutes and did it well might I add. Then another lap later and I was talking to that same in charge guy and he told me to just keep doing that because he had to keep his eye on the temps. OK. That’s when I figured out that I could do what ever I wanted to as no one was going to think any different of me. Half of them think I am some kind of boss so they want nothing to do with me and the other half could care less. Since I do not understand Spanish, I am unsure what the third half thinks about me but I have a pretty good idea. I will say there are a boat-load of people that work here. Not sure if they all make the big money I make though.

My thoughts right now are to work the next two days at the very least and see how I feel. As long as I have something to do the job is ok for a few weeks. If this was my life, I would be having second thoughts about my life! Wait a minute damn it, this is my life!!! I’m also supposed to start a four week UPS thingy during the day, which seems somewhat interesting, but they don’t seem too excited about getting me started, and they don’t promise even 20 hrs a week, BUT that baby pays $9 per hour not a lowly $8.80

I have a ton of trepidation about next week. I am sure they want me to work Thanksgiving. We also have tickets to see some play next Saturday that I would have to eat and I have NEVER been in, around or even out during the Friday after Thanksgiving buying orgy. It just sickens me to even think about it. On top of that, I am ready to snap because of the same CHRISTMAS music I have endured already. ENOUGH! I think its the same songs they played when they got Marcos out of the Philippines. I guess when you don’t have much, Walmart is there for you but damn, this country is doomed. We are imbeciles and no damn Muslim is going to take that away from me. If you’ve never been in a Walmart, you have to go to see what I am talking about, and now, I work there.

Gimme a W – Gimme an A – Gimme an L – Gimme an M – Gimme an A – Gimme an R – Gimme a T – what’s that spell? Walmart! Who’s #1? Walmart! YOU RE BEING ASSIMILATED! RESISTANCE IS FUTILE!

$8.80 per hour. I guess its better than selling sperm? (I think they have half gallon jugs, made in Egypt, on aisle 12. Three per family ONLY). Sheesh!

On a funny note, I have been to the Capital, the home town of Walmart. Yup, Rogers Arkansas. I bet not many in that store can ever say that! Got laid there too. Once in a car and four times in bed!!!

Be safe and enjoy your lives because according to the Mayans, it will all be over very soon.


Happy Thanksgiving

November 26, 2009

Made it to Orlando without incident on Tuesday but many didn’t have the same fortune. The rain contributed to plenty of accidents along I-75 including two that involved 5-6 vehicles each. No one seems to know how to drive when it rains.

My brother drove down from Cleveland to visit his two sons and play a bit of golf. Our Thanksgiving was celebrated yesterday. His youngest is a chef for Disney and today, toiling in the kitchen is mandatory.

Thanksgiving 2009

All in The Family

Rebirth: That hard drive that went south must have had plenty of bad sectors along with the eventual mechanical failure. The new one does everything much faster.

LPGA Tour Championship Round Three

November 23, 2009

My player is Stephanie Louden

Finished the last four holes of our second round after a small fog delay. As it turned out, we needed to shoot one under but came up short. I’m off to Orlando then Q-School looking for work.

LPGA Tour Championship – Round Two and A Half

November 22, 2009

My player is Stephanie Louden

Played fourteen holes. Need a couple birdies tomorrow morning.

Perfect weather brought out the gallery. Hope it peaks the interest of potential sponsors.

LPGA blood drive: Unfortunately, the voracious skeeters were the recipients. It was like someone rang the dinner bell at 4:45.

Boom to bust: Anyone want to buy a golf course? Read all about it here.

Down in the dumps? Get your butt into the gym. – Scientists have known for some time that exercise stimulates the creation of new brain cells … –

LPGA Tour Championship – Wash Out!

November 21, 2009

My player is Stephanie Louden

We were all at the course ready to tee it up when word came down that it was unplayable. An update was scheduled for 9:30 which turned out to be that another update would be at 1:30. No play today was the final call. We resume at 8 AM mañana with a Monday finish.

Oh Oh! That Monday finish will really put the kibosh on travel plans for whoever flew here. Some folks have checked into changing flights only to find that no seats are available until Thursday! One-way car rentals are being looked at.

Good save: Not for par, or any other score for that matter. It was for Katherine Hull not falling into the water from the bridge between number 10 and 11. While riding in this morning, after the decision was made that play was delayed, a floppy-hat, donned by a volunteer, flew off and into the lake. Katherine went to the rescue but it was just a tad too far away. She eventfully reached the floater by hanging off the side and being held by one leg. Unfortunately, no pics are available.

Women in Distress: Check out this article in The Wall Street Journal.

A few LPGA shrimp on the barbie? Almost. Heard that next season’s TV contract may have been in jeopardy, due to the lack of tournaments, so making the Australian events at the beginning of the year official LPGA tournaments was explored. Didn’t need them after all but it would have been a good move anyway. Not in the LET’s estimation I bet.

FYI: You can follow lifeontour on Twitter. What else would it be? Here’s a sample.

LPGA Tour Championship Round Two

November 20, 2009

My player is Stephanie Louden

For once, the predicted “hoser” was right on the money  but play was only delayed til 1:00 PM. Our original time was 12:30 so we never teed it up.

Special guest: Had one during our practice round on Tuesday. If you haven’t seen this article on lpga.com, it’s worth a look.

Sage advice: During play that day, Stacy Lewis mentioned that she and a few others were scheduled to take some roping and cow milking lessons. My only advice was on the latter. “Just make sure it’s a cow and not a bull.”

LPGA Tour Championship – Round One

November 19, 2009

My player is Stephanie Louden

The wind didn’t pick up until we turned but couldn’t take advantage. Shot three over.

A little dab will do ya: The bugs can be ferocious down here and the local remedy (everyone seems to have a favorite) is said to be vanilla extract. A bottle was on the first tee and I dabbed a few drops about my neck. Didn’t work but that jug of “OFF” Steph brought along sure did. Wanted a cookie all day though.

Asleep at the wheel: Again! After the Asian events, one of the caddies checked his player’s status on the  money list and noticed they lost two spots even though the two bodies that passed them earned unofficial money and it should not have been counted. He emailed the powers that be in the LPGA and was thanked for his diligence and a correction was made. How about the LPGA’s diligence? They screwed up the priority list in midseason and played catch-up the rest of the year.

Never saw it comin’? As of a week ago, an article in GolfWeek proclaimed the new venue of the Sybase event as Essex County C.C. and now, Sybase isn’t even on the schedule. ShopRite has been a hefty contributor into the Sybase purse but it looks as if they may have blindsided by their co-host by deciding to go it alone and reinitiate its own event in Atlantic City. Will it be a case of lose one, gain one? Don’t know. Maybe someone else will come onboard to pull this one out.

Wishin’ and hopin’: Looks as if that new event at Tega Cay, I touted awhile back, may be wishful thinking. It’s not on the schedule and nothing new has been reported. Could be a case of “talk about it, and they may come”.

Monday maybe: A “real hoser” is predicted for tomorrow according to TWC so a finish into next week may be a possibility.

Get the picture? The 2010 schedule still looks like one of my favorite snacks and the majority of events are outside the bounds of the US.

2010 LPGA Schedule

LPGA Tour Championship – Pro-Am Day

November 18, 2009

My player is Stephanie Louden

Getting the grips changed, three hours of practice and lunch at Quiznos completed my day. Steph stuck around for some pitching practice but I was given the rest of the afternoon off.

First time time I can remember: Nine holes of practice was permitted after the pro-am. They only had enough players for the morning wave.

Words of wisdom: “If you suck, pick up.” I was told this is the pro-am advice Stuart Appleby (or was it Robert Allenby?) gives to his group. Of course, everyone plays their own ball.

LPGA Championship: Wegmans will be the presenting sponsor for one year only I understand. I guess our annual bowling tournament – The Donna-Wanna Bowl – in Rochester will be a Major also. Should bring in a quality field. One day, we’re going to get the rules officials to participate.

Why start now? Following the rules that is. B. J. was out yesterday charting the greens with Michelle’s caddie. Don’t think he can do that but who’s to call him on it?

LPGA Tour Championship Tuesday

November 17, 2009

My player is Stephanie Louden

Touched ‘em all today, with a continuation of a northerly wind, making the course play just the opposite as it was designed. It’s supposed to turn around so all this practice was worth next to butkis.

We’re baaaack: If you haven’t heard by now, the Shoprite Classic has returned to the schedule for 2010.

Quote of the week: “You can’t get into Springfield but you can get into the Tour Championship.” This, after reflecting on how far down the money list they had to go to fill the field.

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