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Everyone's talking about Stevie

Mark's enjoying some time off, and caddys are famous all of a sudden

Posted Aug 16, 2011 by Mark's Kaddy Korner

It was a welcomed week off with a busy schedule. A couple days in Eau Claire visiting old friends from work, the Eau Claire Academy, and a few guys I played baseball with 25 years ago during my glory days with the Eau Claire Cavaliers. They really weren’t glory days but they sure were a lot of fun, and visiting with everyone sure brought back some great memories. Before “looping” I played a lot of baseball and worked with emotionally disturbed adolescents, the perfect background for the caddy profession.


The Cavaliers asked me to throw out the first pitch whenever I was in town and the timing was perfect. One of Dad’s favorite vacations was a trip to Carson Park. He’d sit in the grandstands sipping beer, cracking peanuts and talking with anyone who walked by. If the umpires were a bit off he’d toss a piece of his mind at them. I left a cracked peanut shell on the mound in his honor after I bounced my “first pitch” into the dirt. In fact, I left his memories in quite a few places last week.


Everywhere I went “Stevie” Williams was the conversation topic. The Monday morning lead on every sports talk show was about Steve. Whatever happened to the “show up, shut up and put up” axiom we lived by for years? Actually, it was nice to see, one of us center stage and treated humanely. Everyone wanted to know how he felt ---- about Tiger, about Adam, the crowd reaction at Firestone and his personal feelings over the last few weeks and years. He handled it like I thought he would, with blatant honesty, not pulling any punches. “Good on ya, mate”.


My interview with the Eau Claire Leader-Telegram focused on the caddy lifestyle and discussed the current state of affairs with Stevie, Tiger and Adam. I followed Stevie on Raymond’s bag maybe history will repeat itself. I’ve thrown my name in the hat but it’s a rather large hat and my slip of paper may be pretty close to the bottom. We’ll see what happens, Tiger’s not coming back till next year anyway and right now Gilder is a better bag. I’m not going anyplace.


It was a week of family, friends and a lot of travel throughout Wisconsin and Illinois. Wendy took the Indian van to Chicago Tuesday and I headed for the cabin. My yard needed haying and a couple days weren’t quite enough. I hitched rides with Rick Silloway and Jamie Dunn to the cabin, brought the old ’89 Ford F150 back to Eau Claire Thursday evening, it hadn’t seen pavement or outside of Ashland township for probably ten years, and then caught a ride with an Eau Claire Academy van 4:30 Friday morning to the Milwaukee area where Wendy picked me up at a Delafield coffee shop. She dropped me off Saturday morning at Uncle George’s and Aunt Nancy’s for a ride to Havana and the annual “Huberfest Reunion”.


“Stevie” was the main topic in every vehicle, even the kids from the Academy wanted to know about Tiger and Steve. We sure have come a long way, well at least Steve has. Seeing friends and family were big for me. Our “Huberfest” T-shirts have a quote “Friends are family, family are friends” and this week sure proved that. All were there when I needed them and it was nice catching up, even though it was brief and there was a lot of golf talk, something I try to avoid when I’m off the course.


There was a major going on and I caught bits of it but it wasn’t the focus like past major weeks. The “no-name kids” are being heard and it shows the depth of the PGA Tour. Sunday afternoon sister Jenny, her husband Jerry and I watched the last few holes while preparing the grill for steaks, corn, avocado and zucchini. You never know what’s going to happen in golf, you need to be prepared for any situation.


Bradley was, Dufner wasn’t and that’s how a five shot lead disappears. Preparation is key for golf and life plus a lot of help from family and friends. Keegan Bradley recognized those who helped him through difficult times and prepared him for his triumph. It was nice seeing another fresh face hoisting the trophy and honestly acknowledging he couldn’t have done it without the help of others.


My article in the Leader-Telegram Tuesday morning was next to a good friend’s, Dave Landgraf, obituary. He was 62 and lived a long prosperous life always giving to others and helping everyone. We worked together at the Academy years ago and had a lot of good times, he was one of those inspirational folks who taught and coached high school kids until retirement. His article was much more meaningful to me

-          Mark Huber

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