Friday, July 13, 2007

Golf is such a sociable game

As a gift for my father on his birthday I decided to take him out for a round of golf. We got there with plenty time to spare and as we got our gear ready and loaded on the cart we talked about his recent trip to California to see my sister and her husband. He was excited to see her cause its been a while and they weren’t sure when the next time would be. After we got the gear loaded we drove around to the first tee. The morning tee time was early to avoid not only the traffic that our public links seem to have but the temperature as well. It was going to be a hot day in the mid 90’s so we felt it was a good idea not to put our over developed bodies through more than we needed too. As we got to the first tee we got out and talked with the foursome in front of us getting ready to tee off. Not about anything important mind you, it was just about the how hot it was going to be and hoped everyone was going to be properly hydrated with their favorite beverages. As we stood there warming up with stretches and swinging clubs around, like it makes any difference in the game we play, the starter came over and informed us that they paired us up with another twosome that should be there shortly.

After a few minutes it was obvious the other twosome was a no show. I thought great some good quality time with the old man. Now don’t get me wrong I really don’t have any problems playing golf with anyone. Lets face it, it’s a great game to play but just a little boring to play by yourself. Who are you going to brag to when you kill your tee shot and it goes by the guy you’re playing with by 20 yards? Or get a high five when you chip in from a greenside bunker or make that long put to save par. The thrill you get even when your partner hits that one shot that keeps you coming back time and time again. We all make that one shot in every round that shows us we do know how to play and that we do have the ability in there some place! I always tell my wife that my golf game is moments of brilliance that would make the best players look at you and say man that guys got game, followed by the shots that make you wonder why you even own a set of clubs.

Our round went great for the first 9 holes. Now we didn’t tear it up but we were having fun and it was a great day to play golf. The worst round of golf is better than the best of days not on the course. We made it to the turn and decided to press on instead of head to the clubhouse to grab a bite to eat or grab a beverage of choice. Once we made it to the 10th tee we had to wait just a bit for the group in front of us. Not a big deal we just chatted more about the baby and how fast he is growing. And much I look forward to the day all three of us and, if I can twist her arm his mother to come out and make it a foursome. Now that’s a day I can’t wait to happen!
Before we teed up a guy comes driving up and asks us to join us. He said he has tried to join several two and threesomes that were behind us and no one wanted to let him join up. Being thoughtful people we said sure thing you can join up with us. We introduced ourselves to him and he to us. As we played the next 9 holes we got to know him a lot better, he was a member of this club and he played there quite a bit so his insight to the holes were very valuable. I guess it was about the time we got to the 15th hole I realized something about Golf that I had always heard but never really got. Golf is a very sociable game. Think about it for just a second. What other sport do you play against a person the entire time chatting about lord knows what, going from tee to tee? Having a pleasant conversation with the same person you’re trying to beat at each swing of the club. In Basketball can you imagine running up and down the court talking about the kids and how they got their first tooth the other night? Can you just see in football the wide receiver catch a long bomb and then run it in while telling the safety that he just smoked about the nice dinner he cooked for his wife on their anniversary? Golf is the only game played at a slow enough pace that not only could you enjoy each shot but enjoy the company of a competitor. It is the game of gentlemen and that’s just another reason I love the game as much as I do. Our world should take a lesson from golf. Maybe our world leaders need to play a few rounds with each other? Maybe if that would happen we might all find that common ground. Everyone enjoys a nice round of golf.

Friday, July 6, 2007

From a Golf Bag to a Diaper Bag

For me the look from the first tee as sunrise comes up over the horizon exposing the due on a well-manicured fairway is a breathtaking view. Golf to me is not only a great game to play but it is also relaxing as it teaches us many life lessons. Now some may argue after playing a round with me that I’m anything but relaxed! The way I clinch up after a bad shot is comparable to what it must feel like to jump out of a perfectly good airplane for the first time and you realize you forgot your cute! Even with that said I really do feel more relaxed on the course than it would seem. Sure I get upset when my nasty banana slice sneaks in and robs me, like a mugger in central park at night, from a good shot. But that’s why this game is so fun to play. Even the best players in the world hit poor shots now and then.

When it comes to my golf bag I do my best to only have what I need in it and no more. With all the clubs that I carry, just incase I need them; the silly thing gets pretty heavy. With 15 clubs, a few sleeves of balls, tees, gloves and other needless stuff that goes onto a bag you can see how it adds up pretty quick. It cracks me up when I watch a caddy carry a pros bag around and see all the food and snacks they carry through their rounds. It came to me that they must not have a beer cart running around or make that fun but quick stop at the turn to grab a drink and a quick bite or snack. Speaking of which, what does a PGA pro do when he or she has to use the restroom during the round? Do they run behind a tree, or into an outhouse carefully placed alone the cart path in the most unlikely spots they can find? I have never thought of that till now but it must be tuff to play a round and never be able to hit the bathroom! That must explain why after the 18th hole they quickly tip their hats to the other players and caddies and head right to the scorers tent. There must be a restroom in there!

With the birth of my son I don’t get the opportunity to play golf as much as I would like. The time it takes to play a round on one of our public courses seem to take an eternity. Lets face it given the choice I would rather spend that time with him than waiting on some goof ball trying to play a round while giving lessons to all his buddies before he hits his shot. I guess it would be a different story if he played that well, but he wasn’t any better than the people he was trying to help! I guess that a classic sign of do as I say not as I do.

The other day my wife and I were getting ready to take a small trip to see some relatives and as we got ready I was given the task to get the diaper bag ready. Now I am pretty helpful husband so I agreed and proceeded to check out the bag and see what we have. Our Son is seven months now so his needs are growing about as fast as he is out growing his diapers! But what I found in that bag was nothing more than amazing! We had two more outfits, just in case he decides to spit up all over himself or has some type of accident, a blanket, several diapers, wipes, formula a bottle and several toys. And I know I missed several things too. We must be nuts to have all of this stuff packed for a trip that will only last a couple of hours. It’s incredible how much stuff you need to have to care for a child today. The bag is stuffed to point of blowing the zippers out almost as bad as I feel after a good Thanksgiving meal. As I got it all packed up and threw it up over my shoulder as I walked out the door to load the van, it came to me that this is as heavy as my golf bag and is a fourth the size! With less time playing golf and more time with the family it seems I carry the diaper bag a lot more than I carry my golf bag. And you know what that’s ok with me!