City residents awoke this morning to the sound of golf claps resonating throughout the Richmond skies, a stream of applause typically done out of appreciation – though, possibly mockery – rather than actual excitement.
Richmond police said the light, rapid sounds of subdued clapping began around 2 a.m., growing louder by the hour. By 8 a.m. today, the sounds of the distant, emotionless applause – typically heard offscreen during televised golf tournaments – was audible within 60 miles of the city’s center.
“As of now, we are not entirely certain where the golf clapping is coming from, and whoever or whatever is doing it, we are unsure of whether they are showing us appreciation or looking down at us with sarcasm,” Richmond Police Chief Bryan T. Norwood said. “Seriously, was it something I did or said?”
Residents have attempted to go about their day as routinely as possible, but say they are perplexed by the spiritless, constant pattern golf clapping – and worry they have done something to merit the rather indifferent applause.
“I mean, the purpose of the golf clap is to do it lightly, fingers on one hand to the palm of the other, so you don’t bother the golfers on other holes,” said Greg Getz, walking into his downtown office. “But the fact that it’s such a lackluster sound and everyone in the city can hear it would lead me to believe someone, somewhere is mocking us.”
Added the 52-year-old: “Is this about me putting my foot in my mouth during the party on Saturday night?”
Norwood said the police would try to uncover the source of the golf clapping by the end of the day, but was relieved the noise was not a slow, open-handed clap, “which would definitely mean it was sarcastic.”