The Loop

Ancient skull discovered in Musselburgh bunker was that of a frustrated golfer

February 28, 2013

__[By Jim Moriarty


__In a discovery of nothing less than hickory-shattering significance, the longest suffering bunker player in the history of golf has been unearthed by greenkeepers on the fourth hole of the world's oldest golf course, the Musselburgh Links. Not unexpectedly, the 2,500-year old skull was found beneath the lip of the bunker which the ancient player, it has been theorized, was unable to clear after what can only be surmised were sufficient attempts to result in extreme agitation and, ultimately, death.


*Photo courtesy of Geoff Shackelford

Musselburgh's fourth hole is known as "Mrs. Forman's," so called because drinks were served through the window of a nearby house, thus making it not only golf's first fourth also its first 19th. The comity for which The Old Golf Course's fourth was celebrated made it a favorite place for golfers to linger during a round so it's not terribly surprising evidence of such lingering would continue to, well, linger. While anthropologists at Dundee University were unable to immediately ascertain the cause of death, there is little doubt among historians that it was a case of atypical mortification. While the partial remains from 500 B.C. predate Mrs. Forman's hospitality, in light of current discoveries there is every reason to believe the area surrounding the fourth green served as a traditional clan gathering point for the passing of animal skins filled with meade and the ritual hurling of insults at inept bunker play.

The discovery has sparked a local controversy even greater than the hair raising maelstrom swirling around Donald Trump's Scottish golf links since the person thought to be the worst the bunker player in history has been determined to be a female. Anthropologists insist, however, that there is no historical basis for believing that sex has anything whatsoever to do with bunker efficiency and, in fact, if anything this was an indication of the tenacity of the ancestors of the women's game. As proof of this lack of gender bias, researchers point to Tommy Nakajima and Walter Hagen or, among better-known male amateurs, Tip O'Neal and Barack Obama.

Old bones are not a rarity at the Musselburgh Links. The second hole of The Old Golf Course, dubbed "The Graves", is thought to be the final resting place of the soldiers who perished in the Battle of Pinkie Cleugh in 1547. The bodies were supposedly buried on the golf course to discourage the playing of golf a thousand years after it was determined the bunker on the fourth, alone, wasn't going to get the job done.

Archeologists are in hopes further excavation will yield the entire remainder of the fourth holes' Iron Age skeleton. Already found were the phalanges and metacarpals frozen in an overlapping position while, nearby, a crude implement thought to be the tool the unfortunate golfer was attempting to use has also been discovered. While the wooden shaft of the club, quite naturally, has not survived centuries stuck in the ground, the iron head has. Carved into the back of the somewhat larger than normal club were the words, "Modus Eugenius Saracenius."

__Editor's Note:__The above account is satirical. At least we're pretty sure it is.