It was at the 2004 Canadian Women’s Open at The Legends on the Niagara that I had a very brief encounter with the legendary Moe Norman. For those of you who are not familiar with Moe, he was one of the most accomplished Canadian golfers of all time and surely the oddest person to ever swing a golf club for a living. If you are not familiar with Moe, I highly encourage you to do some research on the man and his life.
I knew about Moe from a handful of articles I had read about him in various golfing magazines. The themes were always about his unorthodox golf swing and his uncanny golfing ability coupled with eccentricities that were almost too many to list.
It was pro-am day at the CWO and I was stationed outside of the spectator ropes at the driving range watching the golfers warm up since that day’s event had yet to start. I began chatting with a fellow next to me who I soon found out was an agent representing two female Canadian Olympians who were on the range and would be playing in the pro-am. I remember that one of the women was a hockey player who would go on to win gold at the summer games that year in Athens, Greece.
As we were talking an odd looking man started walking towards us quite near the rope that separated us from the players. He was stockily built with a thatch of gray hair that looked like it had been cut by someone’s mother in their kitchen. He wore a long-sleeve, mustard colored shirt buttoned all the way up even though the temperature was well into the 80’s. He had two wrist watches on each arm that he wore on the outside of his shirt sleeves. He wore long, brown pants that appeared to be of 1950’s vintage and his ensemble was completed by mismatched golf shoes.
As he walked towards us, I was almost certain it was Moe Norman. My suspicions were confirmed when the agent next to me called out his name.
‘Moe’, he said with the air of importance befitting his vocational status, ‘I’m an agent and I represent the two Olympians on the far side of the range. They will be playing in the pro-am today.’
Without acknowledgement of any sort, Moe turned to the two women and studied them for a brief moment. With a complete sense of seriousness, he turned back to the agent and said, ‘Tell them not to quit their day jobs’. And then, just as quickly, he moved on.
I stood there, trying not to laugh while the agent could only stare slack-jawed at his two clients.
A bit later, I decided to walk over to the putting green area. As I left, I noticed Moe signing autographs. Since I’m not much of an autograph guy, I passed on this chance.
Sadly, Moe died of congestive heart failure within two months. It is safe to say that I will never forget my moment with Moe.