I was watching Saturday Night Live (sad, I know) the other night and I saw a (terrible) skit where comedian Russell Brand is a homeowner, and the TV crew from the Home Network comes to his house to tell him he's the grand prize winner. Brand gives no emotional reaction in response, much to the chagrin of the TV host. Hilarity, sadly, did not ensue.
But I was reminded of that skit as I picked up the phone to dial Tim Kennelly, superintendent out at Baltimore CC, the other day. I wondered, what would be his reaction when I told him I was flying him out to Pinehurst, N.C. in November to join us for the first ever Golfdom Summit?
Lucky for me, his reaction was better than Brand's.
"Any time you get an opportunity to learn and improve yourself in this industry, you have to take it," Kennelly told me. "It's an opportunity to grow professionally, that's the best way to put it."
Kennelly, like me, has never been to Pinehurst.
"I've met Bob (Farren, director of grounds at Pinehurst) before, and he invited me to come out and see it, but I've never had the chance to get down there. Now I will," Kennelly said. It would have been about a 7-hour drive from Baltimore to Pinehurst, if he had to drive it. "I've heard a lot about the work (Bill) Coore and (Ben) Crenshaw have done on No. 2... I'm excited to see it!"
While I had him on the phone, I asked him how the Golf Industry Show treated him.
"To be honest, I haven't been to the last two... This one was a lot smaller than the last time I went. But bigger isn't always better," he said. "I had meetings with the Bayers and the Syngentas... it was easier to get around to them. Before, you couldn't cover the entire place."
Kennelly did have one complaint about the show: the bad slot for the USGA on Friday morning, after many people had already left the show. Kennelly is a member of his local USGA Greens Section Committee, but still felt compelled to leave before the USGA's Friday session, to get back home at a decent hour.
"But it's just like taking care of a golf course -- it's never perfect. You can't make everyone happy," Kennelly laughed.