Just give the man a glove!
NO GOOD DEED GOES UNREWARDED IN GOLF - Villager lends a glove, gets a golf festival tale Fuzzy Zoeller needed a glove. Chip Young was only too willing to offer his- straight off his hand, swing thoughts and all. When all was said and done, Zoeller once again had foiled Dan Boever's target challenge and Young had a tale to go with the glove that now figures to take up residence in a display case. "I think maybe I'll retire that glove," Young said, showing off Zoeller's autograph when Boever's show wrapped up Friday at The Villages Golf Festival. "I'll bring out a new one and maybe bring it here next year.” Zoeller was back for a second bite of Golf Festival, having made his first visit last year to promote the vodka that bears his name. It’s a perfect market for the Hall of Famer, sharing stories with fans who vividly remember his two major titles at the 1979 Masters and 1984 U.S. Open. “You’ve got to stay young, and the only way to stay young is to stay out in front of the people,” said Zoeller, who stepped away from PGA Tour Champions competition three years ago. “And it is fun for me. We have the vodka out there that we’re promoting and everybody seems to be really enjoying it.” Zoeller, 68, also is less than a year removed from heart surgery, receiving a triple bypass following last year’s Masters. Not only does easygoing humor remain intact, but he still can show off every now and again. Boever — a former World Long Drive Champion-ship winner whose array of trick shots is a Golf Festival staple — concludes his show with a series of challenges for members of the audience, with the winner given the chance to claim a new driver by driving into a large target board about 15 yards away. Last year, the board was covered with a dozen or so balloons. Zoeller came off the sideline and popped a balloon in three swings. So this year, Boever attached full soda cans to the board and challenged Zoeller again. The Hall of Famer’s first two attempts missed the board completely, as Zoeller began rubbing the grip to create some tackiness. “He uses a cord grip on his drivers and those are very slick in my hands,” Zoeller said. “I was having a hard time with the first two swings holding onto the driver, much less trying to hit that board.” Boever asked Zoeller if he wanted a glove. Before Boever could retrieve one from his bag, Young — one of the audience participants and a Village of Sanibel resident — offered his. Swing thoughts and all. Zoeller couldn’t resist reading them out loud — “Slow swing. Stop. Watch ball / spot. Follow thru.” — to chuckles from the audience. “I always write notes on my glove,” Young said later. “My problem is I forget to look at the notes. I must have 12 old gloves laying around and they all say different things.” Swing tips aside, the glove served its purpose. Zoeller put it on, took aim and …Pow! Soda cascaded down the board. Third swing again. “Once I stuck that glove on, I could hold on,” Zoeller said. “Yeah, we can do this.” Without warmup, mind you. In fact, Zoeller said he hadn’t swung a club since Tuesday. “I don’t even know where my clubs are, now that you bring it up,” he quipped. “I’ll find them next week.” Boever, meantime, was left with 51 weeks to plot a better challenge. “Next year I’m going to put marbles on that board and we’ll see how good Fuzzy Zoeller is,” he deadpanned. “Balloons, he can hit fast. Can he hit fast. So it’s going to be a marble or a pinhead or something. He’s making me sick.” “Fuzzy’s trying to steal my thunder,” Boever concluded. “And he’s doing a pretty good job.” - Senior writer Jeff Shain, Daily Sun Times