Golf for life

If you don’t golf, don’t bother reading this. If you do golf, maybe you’ll understand.

Golf is a timeless game. My dad is 87 and though he hasn’t been out on the links yet this year, he’s still hoping that he will. He played quite a few times last year but his stamina isn’t what it used to be. Still, you don’t see too many 87-year-olds out doing any other type of sporting activity other than merely walking.

My dad got me playing golf at an early age. I proposed to Chris on a golf course. (She beat me all three times we played on our honeymoon.) My brother, the Father, is an absolute golf fanatic who plays every Thursday, weather permitting and often, even when the weather doesn’t permit. Late this afternoon, Tom Jr. and Michael went out and played nine holes while Chris and I watched the Traveler’s Championship on TV. So you could say that the golf gene is somewhat dominant in our family.

I was going to do a post yesterday morning when I returned from playing 18 holes but it was too nice a day to spend holed up typing away on my mac. With the Cardinals in a rain delay, I thought now would be an ideal time to espouse on the simple joys and frustrations of this game.

I teed off yesterday a few minutes after 6 am. My attempts to talk any of my friends into a round failed so I went out as a single and finished my round in a little over two hours. It was a gorgeous morning and when you tee off that early, you sometimes have the course to yourself – that’s how it was yesterday. The sun was shining and the golf gods were looking upon me favorably – my first shot of the day found the center of the fairway, about 260 yards out and I followed that up with a perfect 6-iron that landed about eight feet from the pin. I knew it was going to be a good day.

Turns out, the round was like most of my other rounds – some good shots, a few great ones and some blatant stupidity tossed in to remind me that I’ll never really be a great golfer. But that’s okay.

I love to play. Any time. Anywhere.

And though no one will ever think of me as a really good golfer, I’m okay with that. I’m good enough for me.

Golf is a lot like life. I love to be in the game. I know there will be some good times, some memorable moments (not all of them good ones) and I’ll certainly have to endure some bad along the way as well. But I won’t give up. And I’ll always believe that my next shot, might just be my best shot I’ve ever had – but I won’t be surprised when it isn’t.

People who don’t play golf don’t understand the fascination. It’s a frustrating, time-consuming and expensive game.

Then again, there’s something almost magical about being able to say, “See this little ball? I’m going to hit it into that little hole in the ground that’s 440 yards away and I’ll bet I can do that in four swings or less.”

In theory, that doesn’t really sound like all that much fun.

In reality, there aren’t too many things I’d rather do.

Golf fires me up. I know I’m fortunate that I have a wife and family who understand my obsession. I’m even more fortunate that they enjoy playing as well.

Like my dad, I hope I’m still teeing it up well into my eighties but that’s not even worth contemplating. I’m playing in a scramble tomorrow and there’s no need to look any further ahead than that.

Golf for life? I sure hope so.


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