If you're like me, then you enjoy hitting a little white ball off a tee box, down a fairway and (eventually) into a little cup. And if you're like me, you prefer to bypass the fairway and instead hit the ball into tall grass, thick trees, deep water, innocent bystanders, adjacent townhouses - or all of the above - before you even get close to the aforementioned cup. That's why you probably know Robert Trent Jones, Sr. is a world-famous golf course architect who designed (or redesigned) about 500 golf courses in at least 40 states and 35 other countries around the world. In fact, he designed Hazeltine National Golf Club right here in Chaska - where Claire and I went to see
Tiger Woods Bubba Watson play last year. It has been jokingly said, "The sun never sets on a Robert Trent Jones golf course." I don't know what this means, but I found it on Wikipedia and trust that it's both an accurate and fall-down hilarious statement. So what's golf course design have to do with Claire? Good question. I'll tell you. The story goes something like this...
I needed to write a blog post yesterday about Claire's picnic from last week (as usual, I'm running about a week behind on my stories due in large part to a sh!tty camera that either won't take a decent picture OR refuses to upload said crappy photos to the computer). Claire was asking to go outside because she apparently still doesn't grasp the concept that playing in 95 degree heat SUCKS! So instead, I was able to convince her to play with her indoor sandbox - which consists of a 15-quart Rubbermaid container filled half-way with dry pinto beans (pre-rinsed for cleanliness no less). Claire loves to dig in the beans with little spoons and measuring cups then pour the beans into a little funnel. It's a good way to keep her preoccupied for at least an hour, which is sometimes necessary to regain control of your sanity (especially after one of her freedom tantrums I told you about yesterday). So here I was at the computer blogging away when Claire yells from the kitchen table, "Papa! Come in here... Come to this room and see what I made here!" It's true - she has a little bit of the Sarah Palin word-salad speech thing going on, but we're hoping she gets over that before she turns four and is old enough to run for Preschool Hall Monitor. So I head into the kitchen and find Claire proudly displaying her creation. "Look!" she said. "I made a golf course!"
It's true. She had designed and built her very own The Palms at Rabbit Hole Country Club. She used her Tale of Peter Rabbit storybook for the course sign, including a plastic toddler plate for the course clubhouse. The palm trees were designated by two little baby spoons sunk into the beans upside-down. In the photo above, Claire's putting the finishing touches on a sand bunker next to a berm (the tiny orange bowl). And the golf ball is sitting in the cup on the green, and the little raisin box is the flag stick marking the hole. She was very proud and rightly so. So if the whole getting really good at basketball and winning a scholarship to play in college before getting a multimillion dollar contract to play in the WNBA thing doesn't work out, maybe Claire will become a golf course architect? In either scenario, I see a pimped-out golf cart in my future. Fore!