5th (2010)

The Hunt for Brown October

"Daddy, please don't get too drunk today". This simple request was the less than inspiring start to Mr. Ryan Porter's day, on October 2nd, 2010. Yet, by executing a near sublime game of golf, and by completely dismissing his seven year old daughter's wishes, he would finish that day, in nothing less, than inspiring fashion. How was this possible? Ryan achieved this by beating twelve other other drunkards, to win the beloved brown jacket of our beloved October Classic.
Before I explain the finer details on how Mr. Porter came to win the jacket, I should first explain how it all started this year. It began back in August, when I first emailed invites for the fifth October Classic. The response was surprisingly swift, and honestly, a bit unexpected. At sixteen confirmations this year, it brought us a record amount of sportsmen. That was double last year's total of eight guys! It makes me grin, to think back to that first October Classic in '06, when there was only four of us, and I almost had to twist people's arms to play!

Because of the massive amount of sportsmen involved this year, I had to change the format around a bit. This year, I broke up the group into four smaller groups, and named them each after the four main characters from Caddyshack: Judge Smails, Al Czervik, Ty Webb, and Carl Spackler. The top skin gatherer from each group, after twelve holes, would move on to play in the final Brown Round for the last six holes (i.e. play-offs). This format worked very well for us, and I think this will be way we do it from now on.

This year, it rained torrentially for two days straight, leading up to the Classic. In fact, it only stopped raining about four hours before our first tee-time. Luckily though, it was a very dry summer, and the ground readily absorbed all the moisture.  However, we were not allowed to use carts this year, and ended up walking eighteen holes (mostly). I have to say though, it wasn't that bad of an experience walking, and I may decree that the Classic will be a walking event from now on. On a side note, walking 18 holes is about the same as walking 7 miles/10km.

As far as the first round went, I'm not sure exactly what happened in every group leading up to the Brown Round, because I was too busy drinking and golfing in my own Group (Al Czervik). However, I did hear whispers from the other groups, about broken golf clubs, tree climbing, waterskiing, and even something about someone jettisoning an old and smelly jacket into a nearby body of water, via a pseudo-religious ceremony (wtf?!). I'll leave those whispers, as whispers, and not delve into any more detail about them. Though, you may find photographic/video-graphic evidence of them if you search enough...

After the initial first round played out, the smaller groups produced the following four applicants for October glory: Ryan Porter, Alex Rideout, Leigh Brook, and Robert Poiesz. These four men would now begin in earnest, to chase down their life long dream of donning the brown (when I write, "life long", what I really mean, is since they first got that initial first invite back in August).   

The Brown Round began with Ryan won holes 13 and 14, gathering a paltry two skins. From this point on, all four guys would manage to halve every other hole until the 18th. Meaning, the last hole was now worth ten skins, and would solely determine the this year's Octoberman. By the 18th hole, I had stopped golfing, and was simply tagging along with these guys as their personal photojournalist, I had nothing better to do than drink heavily and snap some out of focus pictures. And because of that. I draw a blank on exactly what happened. 

Luckily, Ryan sent me an email the next day, describing that last hole. I'll let his written words describe the action...   

Ryan Porter:  After halving hole 17 with pars, we headed to the 18th tee. Any of us if the brown round could still win! This was my last hole, and my last chance to go into the record books as the latest Octoberman.

I was first up off of the tee and hit a solid drive down the left side of the fairway.  Next up was Leigh and he pushed his drive way to the right somewhere over towards the driving range.  Alex and Rob hit their drives down the middle.  Leigh then hit a great shot from over behind the trees, but still came up a bit short.  Robert was next, and also came up short.  Alex was next man to go.  He must have been feeling the moment, and became adrenalized, because he hit his ball crisp, clean, and way, way too hard.  His ball sailed very high and very beyond the targeted green.  Alex's errant ball then finished its wayward flight, by crash landing into the nearby sea of hardened asphalt. (I'm going to have to go ahead, and take credit for those last 2.5 sentences -Nick)

There it was, an open green.  It was there to be had.  I had 100 yards up the hill to the pin.  The wind was a bit in my face so I pulled out my 52 degree.  I hit it solid and ended up 15 feet away.

Alex, Rob, and Leigh all hit the green with their 3rd shots but were not close.  I was feeling the pressure now.  The gallery finally quieted down, in spite of their having a good ol' time (we absolutely were!! -N).  I had a 15 footer straight up the hill for birdie.

After the others putted, it was my turn.  I could now 2 putt for the win and all of the honor that comes with being a Brownman.  I hit my putt to about 2 feet and tapped in for the win.  Woohooo!  The rest of the night was a blur...sdsd


It was indeed a "blur" Mr. Porter. So much so, that the rest of this write-up had to be based on only the evidence I found in my camera, the following morning. After Ryan drained that last putt for the win, it would seem that Octoberman Paul McCarthy (not to be confused with hot shot golfer, Caul McParthy), was already on the green, waiting to drape Ryan with this year's edition of the brown jacket. And of course, after being throned this year's Octoberman, Ryan was immediately granted his "scepter", a brown bottle of 40 Creek whisky (here in Canada, we spell whisky without an "e", much like the Scots). 

And now, as I write this a week later, on my laptop, I find myself wanting to officially congratulate Mr. Porter on his win. Ryan, you played well and drank heavily (much to the chagrin of your poor daughter, I suspect). In short, you played like a true Octoberman, and as one myself, I now say unto thee, "Welcome Mr. Porter, welcome to the inebriated, yet hallowed ranks of Octobermen. We've been waiting for you"


Post Script

This year's event was way, way too much fun. And as I previously mentioned in Bogeys & Beer, I want to thank all the guys who showed up this year (and of course the wives who picked up their drunk asses). You, made this year's Classic the best to date, and there was no way that could have been accomplished without the specific group we had that day. It was a great and diverse gang and because of all of you that day, the spirit and concept of the October Classic grew exponentially. So again, "thank you" to every guy who showed up here today.  

And also, thank you to everybody who reads the site on a regular basis, and follows all this silliness. 

Thank you.

The four brackets. Top seeds are in bold.
Judge Smails    Al Zcervik            Ty Webb            Carl Spackler 
Ryan Porter                    Alex Rideout                 Leigh Brooks                Robert Poiesz
Paul McCarthy                   Mike V                                 Pierre Gendron                John Hebert
Don Bouchard                    Nicolas Labbe                  Denis Ouellette                 John Doucette
                                                 Aaron McLaughlin                                                         John B
These are just some of the images from the fifth October Classic.  If you'd like to see them all, follow this link.



Ryan Porter, the 5th Octoberman!