October 23, 2020

it's a family thing & MY HOOD HATH ARRIVED

I don't golf and I have never caddied, but the retelling of the golf course related adventures was a high point of my days this summer - and prior summers too.  

I vividly remember when Ed first started caddying.  We now had two caddies who shared inside jokes and hearty laughs.  During dinner one night, Lad described how a rookie caddy tried to carry a heavy bag.  This kid reached for a ball or something and fell into the little lake on the course.  Even though Ed was there to witness it, when Lad retold the tale Ed sprayed his milk all over the table . . . thru his nose.  

The boys were so busy this summer, the course recap did not even happen daily, but when it did I tuned in.  I learned not to ask questions for fear of being scolded in the 'How do you NOT know how caddying works by now, Mother?' kind of way, but to just let the tale unfold.  There were hilarious golfers whose sense of humor entertained my kids.  There were golfers who requested my guys regularly.  My caddies had different opinions about which golfer was better at:  tips, putts, jokes, earning an income, drinking, schmoozing, etc.  

Reg assured me from time to time that his favorite golfer Mr. B made him laugh but that it was too inappropriate to be shared.  Great to know that along with raking in good tips, my 13-year-old (Reg's age in 2019) is getting an education.  Lad and Ed saw Mr. B at the course one day last week when Reg couldn't caddy.  

Mr. B was told that some little scrawny kid was his caddy.  He walked over to him and said, 'Oh, so you're my caddy?  What's your name, Sarah?'  Then on each hole Mr. B held his club up high and continued to raise it higher and higher encouraging his 'Sarah' caddy to jump for it.  'Come on, you almost had it that time!'  

A few nights before the boys left for college the course honored the caddies with a caddy day.  (**Note to self:  we changed Lad's flight back to school for his senior year so that he could attend this event that was of course scheduled at the last minute.  This is something I need to remember when he spews his recent hatred at us).  The 3 older boys golfed the course during the day.  Some of their favorite golfers, who support the caddy program and apparently also support the bar with multiple visits, golfed with them.  The stories were endless, the laughs contagious and I didn't even understand what the Hell they were talking about.  

I never dreamt Mini would stick it out as a caddy.  I assumed she would barely survive the basic training, caddy for a few loops, and then beg to sleep late and accept babysitting jobs - anything not to caddy.  Mini lands tons of babysitting jobs so her caddying is more limited than her brothers, but she has stuck with it and joins in the boys' banter.  

She even managed to tolerate the boys' imitation of her which includes her struggling under the weight of a golf bag.  She walks at a 45 degree angle to the ground.  Ed has begged me to get her to tame her mop, which we have recently referred to as the Heath Leger look. 

This photo of (in order from left, taken in Oct '19) Ed, Tank, Mini, Reg shows the aftermath of caddying: extreme hunger. Plus you get a look at Mini's hair, although it is more tame in her messy bun than the usual Heath-pony.

Similar to my issue recognizing music by name, etc.  I can NEVER remember Heath's name, so when I tell my 'look how Mini is sporting a Heath Ledger in 'The Patriot' look' joke - I usually ruin it as I stand there and try to remember the dude with the messy pony tail in 'The Patriot'.  Or I remember Heath's name, but I can't think of the name of the flick.  It would be such a good joke.

I might have to rethink my Irish dan
cing book, my potty training book, my how-to-parent book geared towards the new-age clueless parent, and dive right into a mother-of-caddies memoir.  The stories are endless now that we have 5 participants, not to mention Coach used to caddy alongside my brothers Pat and Mike.  I grew up hearing hilarious caddy stories across the dinner table.  

In high school, I babysat for a family who paid me well for caring for their kids while they golfed, but then I discovered how much MORE they were paying my brothers to carry their clubs.  There are layers here, folks!

In 2020, I am thinking about how caddying is almost like working for a family owned business.  The caddies have had their share of 'don't-embarrass-me' moments.  The morning of a big tournament this summer, Lad failed to come home.  Coach and I stood in the kitchen watching Ed pace.  Tank, Mini, and Reg stood at the door, poised and ready to bolt.  Lad was expected to be at the course, dressed and ready at the first hole shortly.  No sign of him.  He wasn't answering his phone.  Ed and Lad were in the same group.  Ed would be expected to explain Lad's whereabouts to his golfer - it was day two of the tournament.  There wouldn't be a caddy to fill in for him as everyone had their assignments.  

At the last minute, Lad called.  Ed told Lad:  Meet us at the course.  I'll leave your clothes in the car.  Car unlocked.  Hurry!

I guess you could say we had more than just who-is-taking-what-car kind of stress this summer.  I wish I could say it's all resolved, but as you now know the situation has escalated.  Sigh.

The next post is back to 2019 goofiness . . . BUT FIRST - after a 3 year wait, the hood was installed on Thursday. This is Wed - the night before the much anticipated crowning jewel to the kitchen and I am giddy with excitement.

Excuse the excess pictures - I am slightly obsessed. Personally, I think it's HOOD-ILICIOUS!

Anyone else wait THREE YEARS to get a part of their kitchen/other room/project done?


Busy Bee Suz said...

Thank you Baby Jesus- I will be able to sleep tonight knowing your kitchen is complete!! It's a thing of beauty.

The caddy funny that they ARE all into it. I love that part; what a great conversation centerpiece they will have forever. They can share stories with their kids one day.

I know nothing about golfing other than what I learned from CaddyShack. I also can't always place names with movies, but I'm totall seeing the Heath Ledger hair in your busy kitchen. :)

Ernie said...

Suz - It seriously feels like I just got the kitchen redone. The initial contractor (because we are on our 3rd!, thanks to the liars and cheats of the world who don't know that my true grit matches my legit last name) didn't order pencil tile and so per my suggestion when they were tiling the two different tiles behind the stovetop and they didn't have anything to use as a border - they stuck a hunk of the countertop in there. Well, I am a lot of things but kitchen designer NOT SO MUCH, so it looked AWFUL for 3 years. On Wednesday they put pencil tile in and finished tiling up the wall where the hood would go and then yesterday they put the hood in. Happy day! **there are a bunch of little piddly things that need to be done still, but nothing that the you would necessarily notice. So it FEELS done. Woot Woot!

Ally Bean said...

Your hood is beautiful as is your whole kitchen. I'm glad it's all complete. I never cared for golf even though I was forced to take lessons. I never liked carrying the clubs either so paying someone to do that for me would be what I'd do... if I ever played golf.

Kara said...

My gosh! It's GLORIOUS! Not being facetious, it's really great looking.

My parents' kitchen is an ongoing project. It started in 1996 when I went off to college-they doubled the size by turning the dining room into a pass through pantry and expanding into the porch- and as soon as it's "done" they do something else. As in, they're now refacing the cabinets that they installed in 1996. I'm sure the floors from 2000 are next on the list, because they're older generation pergo, and have not aged well (and have been beaten up by dogs and 11 grandchildren who are allowed to do whatever they want in Nana's house). Our house was newly built in 2005 when we bought it, so we've only done minimal things like replacing the kitchen faucet, painting and adding some lights.

Ernie said...

Ally - Thank you - it became so 'ordinary' not to have a hood that walking in and seeing the hood is now a bit of a shock. A happy, glorious shock.

I never played golf until Coach and I were dating. Coach: "You have a natural swing." But since Coach's father is a bossy, opiniated beast of a man, I set down my golf club and walked away FOREVER. No interest, particularly if it gives my father in law a place to critique me. No thanks. Besides, in warm weather the pool beckons. And, those dang bags are HEAVY!

Ernie said...

Kara - Thank you - it is still a pleasant surprise to walk in and see a hood on the wall. I should've posted a photo of what that space has looked like for YEARS. . . will post that another time.

Your parents' kitchen with the walk-thru pantry sounds divine. With Coach, I knew I had to go for the gusto and then not ask to fix another thing, so I would never have been able to do one part and than a few years later start on something else.

My mom is also a Nana, but NO WAY IN HELL her 22 grandchildren can do what they want in her abode. White carpets, Waterford crystal floor lamps, gorgeous hardwood floors. Different kinds of Nanas, for sure.

Kari said...

OMG, YOUR KITCHEN!! I love it! So beautiful!!

I don't like golf, personally. I, like Suz, got all my golf knowledge from Caddyshack. My dad liked to golf. My ex-husband, well you know. My current husband is actually an amazing golfer, caddied from freshman year high school to senior year college, and played on the Varsity team in high school his freshman year to senior year. That is all my knowledge. LOL

All I can say is I can only imagine the smells of your home with all of those caddies and their sweaty caddy socks. May the Lord be with you.

Gigi said...

Your kitchen is done! It's gorgeous!

Pat Birnie said...

I am so happy you finally got your range hood- I looks amazing! Your persistence paid off finally.

It must be so much fun to have 4 or 5 of the kids sharing stories and laughing- those are my fave time’s with my kids, when I just sit back and watch, listen and enjoy. It is crazy that your brothers were paid much more to carry clubs than you were to watch kids. I guess that’s a weird statement on their values??

I just took up golf this fall - man it’s really challenging but my husband is a very patient coach. And by the way, they may have thought Mr B was hilarious but to me he sounds like a bit of a dick- making that poor kid jump to reach the clubs. Just my opinion there.

Love your blog Ernie!

Nicole MacPherson said...

Oooh, your kitchen is so pretty! I love it! I love looking at other people's kitchens and yours is so nice.

Beth Cotell said...

The good is gorgeous!!! I hope you are enjoying enjoying the heck out of it!

Ernie said...

Kari - thanks. The guy cleared the countertop off around the hood where he was working - so it looks extra fab in the pictures. I told a mom I sit for at pick up time: So, you know this is what it always looks like - no clutter.

I learned golf lingo over the years because of caddy talk but I can't even stand to watch it on TV. So boring.

Ernie said...

Gigi - Thanks - I never EVER dreamt it would take SO long. It is amazing what crappy contractors can get away with. Original guy was taken to court by someone and now he is not allowed to pull a permit in the town where he had a storefront (high end area) and he had to close down his storefront. That's the most they could do to him. Criminal.

Ernie said...

Pat - Thanks - I have literally lost track of the number of workers I had come to tell me whether or not they could finish the job. One day I woke up during the pandemic and thought - how about the contractor who I didn't use, AND OF COURSE NOW WISH I HAD. The photos on his website were not aesthetically appealing to me, outdated, etc. So I went with the crook. Sigh. Anyway, he does good work.

My kids banter back and forth as they recall stuff that happened either when one of them licked the garage floor or let a frog loose in the basement or got into the pool toys stored in the attic and filled them with water on the 2nd floor squirted them everywhere or compare caddy adventures - always so fun.

Yes, Mr. B is a bit inappropriate - teenage boys gobble that stuff up, but my kids know I would never stand for them to talk that way, at least I hope they do. I think they find it particularly entertaining because they can't believe these grown men act up at their age.

Glad you like it here, because I'm always happy to hear from you.

Ernie said...

Nicole - Thanks. Amazing how different the room is with the hood in place. For Halloween when Mini was about 4 or 5 (BEFORE she was addicted to HGTV), she kept sticking her head in other people's houses when she trick or treated. I was like "Why are you doing that?" She admitted that she liked to look at other people's houses because other people had such nice things, and such organized and well decorated houses. So funny. I didn't dare buy nice stuff because the kids destroyed everything. Mini is now over the moon with the kitchen.

Ernie said...

Beth- It is still a surprise to walk in the room and see it. A nice surprise. I did notice tonight that it is SUPER drafty. It is cold here in Chicago tonight - we were in Ohio looking at colleges and when we got back and I was standing in front of the hood I felt a major draft. Now I have to find out if that is normal.