Chris S, an upper middle class boy from Marin County, California, knows little joy. He’s a master, however, at sulky silence and disgust.
Actually the two tend to coincide when Chris steps onto a golf course. But such behavior, once catalyzed by a skanked iron shot, a muffed chip, or an errant drive, doesn’t necessarily end when he departs the links.
One such incident took place while Chris was on a weeklong golfing vacation to Alabama with his brother Brett and friend Kevin to play the famed Robert Trent Jones Trail. On the 14th at Silver Lakes golf course, Chris hit his drive a bit too well – all the way through the fairway and into the water – then followed that up with a four-putt.
As Kevin, in the midst of his only lifetime under par round, prepared to putt, he heard a splash. Chris had thrown the expensive, but offending, putter into the lake. Then he went silent.
Chris remained wordless, his headphones on to drown out the pain, during the two hour drive from the course back to Birmingham, where the three were lodging. He even chose to stay in the car when Brett and Kevin stopped for dinner at an Outback Steakhouse.
A while later, as Brett helped Kevin celebrate his great round with Outback’s famous Bloomin Onion, they heard a car alarm. Then they saw Chris, who spoke for the first time in hours, but only to demand the keys so he could shut the alarm off.
Moments later, Chris stormed inside the restaurant again, heaved the keys in the direction of his brother and friend, and once again departed. But his throw missed its target, and the keys went flying into the wrong booth, where an unlucky couple was attempting to enjoy their meal.
“I just went and said excuse me, those are my keys,” says Brett.
He didn’t try to explain to the couple that five hours earlier Chris had missed a short putt.