Wednesday, June 4, 2014
I used to take the game very serious, back when I was young and limber. Then I got married and had children. The game can be expensive, and food, diapers and clothes kind of took precedence over golf. Also, the wife wanted me home on weekends to give her a little break from the child raising thing.
I am finished with my weekly toddler sitting gig until September so I now have extra time. Unlike previous wives wanting me to stay home and help with children, Mrs. Cranky needs me out of the house. So I am back to golf. Also I need the exercise.
It seems golf has changed a bit since I last took it seriously. Years ago the public course was always crowded. There were often wait times of well over an hour to tee off. Apparently the game is not as popular as it once was as the local course is now seldom crowded. While it used to take over six hours to play a round it now takes no more than three hours.
Now that I have the time, time is not a factor.
The game used to be expensive. When I was single, 45 years ago, a golf ball cost $1.25, (most rounds use several balls) a small fortune when minimum wage was $1.15 an hour. Today golf balls still cost $1.25 when you buy them by the dozen, plus that’s all I ever get for Christmas and birthdays so I have a large unused stash.
The price for a round of golf at the public course is $13 for the senior rate. It used to cost me $25 a round. Now that I have more money, it is only $13. Subsidies for old people are a wonderful thing.
To top it off at the end of a round I can get a lovely gin and tonic for $3. It is nice of the county to subsidize my golf, not sure why they subsidize my liquor.
I can hit a bucket of practice balls, play 18 holes and have an after round gin and tonic all for under $20. Now that I can afford to play golf, the cost is not a factor.
I always used to think that if I ever had the time and could afford it, I could practice every day, play several times a week and maybe become a pretty good golfer.
It turns out I now have the time, and I have the money. Unfortunately, after seven holes of play I get winded and my legs start to hurt. The day after a two hour practice session my muscles ache too much to practice or play for another two days. My back allows me to only take a half swing and I can no longer hit the ball with much distance. If I don’t hit the ball in the fairway, my eyes make it difficult to even find my ball. Once on the green my nerves are no longer steady and my putting is iffy at best.
When I was young I had neither the time nor money to become a really good golfer. Now I have the time and money but not my youth.
I’m not complaining. I’m not saying life is cruel. I’m just saying life can be a tease.
I still like to play golf, I just have to accept I will never become real good at it. Actually it is that knowledge that allows me to enjoy the game.
When I was young my aspirations of greatness reduced my ability to enjoy the game. Now I just enjoy getting out in the sun for a nice walk surrounded by green grass and trees. How I score is not important.
If I could just cure my slice, add twenty yards to my drive, learn to chip, eliminate mishits and stop three putting…