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  June 23, 2001



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I'm still grappling with golf


By BRET HART -- SLAM! Wrestling
 What a great day it was out at Redwood Meadows on Thursday.

 Let me say from the get-go that I don't golf.

 People ask me all the time but trust me when I tell ya, I could throw the ball further. I don't see the point hacking up the nice grass on courses all over town.

 But on Thursday, I went as a "marshal" for the Love of Children Society. A marshal, now I could get into that! It'd be like being the Sheriff in town. (Reminds me of my old Lonesome Dove days.)

 Marshal Hart sounded pretty darn good to me and off I went to make sure that everybody followed the rules.

 What I found out was practically nobody was following the rules and no one cared because it was all for a worthy cause.

 Let's just say, some of these guys shouldn't quit their day jobs.

 But I digress.

 Speaking of quitting your day job to play golf, I wonder how many people know that's what wrestler Jacques Rougeau actually considered doing simply because he loved golf and was good at it.

 Some other golfing wrestlers who come to mind are Lex Luger, Yokozuna and Andre the Giant, who had to have special clubs made.

 Back to Thursday, I've written about Ashid Bahl, the founder of the For the Love of Children Society before -- how he singlehandedly started a charity from nothing that has helped more than 30,000 people around the world to date.

 I'm proud my wife Julie has found her niche volunteering for this dedicated organization and is now vice-president.

 Julie had a hard childhood and always wanted to give back, so besides spoiling my kids rotten, she has now travelled to India, Nepal and Peru, to name a few, to aid in such things as getting school supplies and medical care for children subsisting in squalid conditions.

 It was a who's who of beloved Calgary icons who went above and beyond the call -- like they always do -- to make the golf fund-raiser not only a success but a fun time for all.

 Take Ed Whalen, who contributes his good humour and charisma, day in and day out, to so many worthy causes that he truly is one of Calgary's local treasures. And Bill Powers, there's another gem. Who couldn't love these two guys?

 Then there's Dan Kroffat, the only wrestler from his generation who has five cents to show for it. He is an unsung hero largely responsible for getting corporate backers onboard.

 How many of you who enjoyed Dan as a wrestler in the old Stampede Wrestling days are aware he was also the creator of the ladder match and had one of the best minds in the business?

 Seeing former Stampeder Tom Forzani on the green made me think (like only someone who doesn't golf would) what a waste of good grass.

 I'd love to team up with Forzani and Kroffat -- what a great game of touch football that would be.

 But golf was the game of the day.

 Even Blade, my youngest son, was there to help. He was the official "steerer" (which means that he had a great time driving a golf cart all over the green) and he also made his debut as a male model -- living every 11-year-old boy's dream of trying on and showing off all the cool autographed team jerseys at the auction before the corporate bidders took them home.

 To all the people at this fund-raiser and others like it, I tip my cap to you.

 We all had a great time raising funds to put a smile on the faces of kids who don't have a lot to be happy about.

 And I warn everybody --next year, bring your hard hats because I'm bringing my clubs.

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