Taking a swing at the LPGA Tour

Sometimes, an opportunity comes along that you can't pass up. Other times, you should just roll over and go back to sleep.

When some folks at Anheuser-Busch offered me a shot at one of their two sponsor's exemptions for the LPGA's Michelob Ultra Open next May, I must admit to having been a bit torn. Yes, I was a scratch in high school, earned a golf scholarship to Chapel Hill and clean up on the pro-shop vouchers at corporate outings. But I've lived in New York City -- not exactly a golf mecca -- for four years, I don't belong to a club and I've broken 80 only a handful of times since college.

My handicap is now 7, and Tour rules say I have to be a 2 or better to tee up with the pros.

Then again, this is something no journalist has ever been able to do before.

And while I have no illusions of quitting my day job to go spike-to-spike with Natalie and Lorena, I'd be crazy not to at least give it a shot, right? [Ed.'s note: Right!]

So now my hands are bloody and callused, my back aches and my forearms are swollen to twice their normal size. I've just returned from Sun Valley, Idaho, where I spent two days with my ESPN Golf Schools instructor, Tim Mahoney, rebuilding my swing, talking posture and plane, and hitting countless range balls -- very few of which went where I wanted them to.

Well, they say you've got to get worse to get better. And since things can't get much worse, I'm feeling pretty good.

Sarah Turcotte is an associate editor for ESPN the Magazine. This is her first foray into pro golf. Email your "A" tips to thelongshot@espn.go.com.