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Tee Times Magazine | Minneapolis/St. Paul

Breezy Point

Local Golf
August 18, 2017

RJ Smiley

Mojo joined our golf team during my junior year of college. He was a great shot maker who could put together, and keep together, a good round. He was known for shooting some really low scores. He grew up on Salina Country Club where he had spent almost every day from the time he was 8 years old. He was a typical country club playboy. His parents made sure he had plenty of money in pocket. Besides golf, Roger, before he became Mojo, liked two things: pretty women and beer. Roger only had one problem, staying sober! He would drink beer until he puked; then drink some more. An early tee time was a problem for Roger, as he was always hung over.

He did not drink beer while playing competitive golf, but most days he was hammered before he got home from the golf course. He had lost his drivers license the previous year. You guessed it DUI!

We had an exceptionally good Division II golf program and each fall our team was invited to participate in the prestigious William H. Tucker Tournament at the University of New Mexico. As a DII school we had no budget for air travel so we drove to all our matches in a school station wagon. Five golfers and our coach in the car, luggage and clubs in a rack on top. Our coach, who was a great guy, liked to drink beer as much as Roger, I usually shared driving duties with two other players.

The fall of my senior year on the return trip from the Tucker we had stopped at a filling station in Oklahoma. Roger, who had been napping for the three hours we had been traveling, slipped across the street and slammed down a few quick beers during our pit stop. As he was running back to the station wagon, a good looking girl stepped out of the bar waving a good by to Roger. Still running, Roger looked back over his shoulder. At the same instant, a car was pulling out of the gas station. The driver was looking back as he accelerated into the traffic lane. At the last second, Roger jumped but he got clipped in the left knee as he rolled over the hood of the auto.

After a few minutes everybody decided that Roger was just bruised and no names were given and the police were not called. In the cramped car, Roger was in pain the entire trip home.

A slight meniscus tear, no surgery. But the knee hurt Roger every swing all winter. When we were joking we would tell Roger "to take one for the team" and rip at the ball like he did before the incident. One day before an early spring match Roger made the announcement, "I am going to put "The Big Mojo" on the ball off the first tee today." Hard swing! Bad knee! Much pain! His expression stuck, Roger shall forever be "Mojo".

As I said earlier Mojo loved pretty women. I had a first date with a new girl that told me she had a girlfriend. "Could you find a guy for her so we could double date? Please!!!" Time was getting short. No takers, so I talked to Mojo, the ladies man. I had to tell a little white lie when Mojo asked me what she looked like. I had never seen this girl.

When our dates came out of the dorm elevator, I knew I was in trouble. Not only was his date a little heavy.... she was homely. They got into the back seat of my car and we went directly to the Brass Rail, a great college bar with a jukebox and a dance floor. We ordered a pitcher of beer and Roger quickly downed two. As I got up to dance with my beautiful new date, Roger said he was going to the bathroom.

When we returned to our booth, no Roger. "Where did Roger go?" she said. "He has never returned from the bathroom."

"He must have run into some of our friends. Mojo will be back in a minute. Do you want another beer?"

What a mess! Mojo had split! Out the back door and down the street to another bar never to be seen again that night. No romance for me! Last date with those two.

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