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Wednesday, June 4, 2014

FORE! Again


FORE! Again
 
I’ve started to take up golf again.  Well I never totally quit, but I am taking it more serious, that means practicing along with playing a round or so each week.

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…

15 comments:

  1. Not being a golf fan I actually didn't understand most of that post (but I do like a nice walk surrounded by green grass and trees ... )

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  2. My experience with golfers is that they tend to get a bit cranky when their game doesn't go well, so you should be, um, well, par for the course.

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  3. Sweet irony....
    My dad and grandfather were both keen golfers so I've seen the love, frustration and optimism people approach golf with. Sounds like you've found a way to enjoy it with less pressure. The fact it's so cheap is a nice bonus you've earned yourself. Enjoy!

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  4. Funny how things change as we age. We've got more money but the body doesn't work as well. Youth is wasted on the youth.

    Have a fabulous day. ☺

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  5. I haven't encountered many other people who can really enjoy something they admit they are not good at. Enjoying it is what really matters.

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  6. this made me laugh. :) i did actually see a headline, recently, that said golf is waning in popularity.

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  7. (and i love me a good gin and tonic!)

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  8. "Unlike previous wives..." sounds like a new reality show.

    I was under the impression that you were a non-drinker.
    Moderation in everything...

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    1. To clarify:
      I've gone from 2+liters of scotch a week along with 4-5 bottles of wine to an occasional glass of wine and sometimes after a round of golf a beer and yes sometimes a gin and tonic. So I claim I have quit drinking. I guess I really have quit drunking. If I drink at all now it is to enjoy and or refresh not to forget bad stuff. I also quit smoking, but every now and then I will partake of a cigar and maybe a glass of port to go with it; usually with the company of my degenerate Brother-in-law. Naw, he is a good dude.

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  9. Ah, the ironies in life!

    Isn't it funny, the things we give up while kids are little? Golf for you, going to the bathroom by myself for me...

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  10. Good for you Cranky. Just play and enjoy the outing. Life is too short to take golf that serious. Or in my case, life is too short to play golf AT ALL. :)

    S

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  11. My father-in-law was an avid golfer but I don't think he had an aptitude for it. I followed him around a course a few times but I never had time enough for it.

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  12. It's official. Youth is wasted on the young.

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  13. Eh, I tried to like golf and actually wasn't horrible but the snotty snobs who own the local courses snootied me away. After they got away with it for years on crowded courses now they're seeing much the same you see, empty courses. If I was inclined I could play for less and not have to stand in line to do so even without the geezer rates but, well, I'm done .... oh well.

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  14. I've never even tried to play golf. I played mini golf does that count. I pretty much suck at it so I figured the real thing... Well probably not something I should try. Odd thing is though now that I can't see I actually play better. Phil stands in front of the hole and tells me to aim towards his feet. I've made several hole in ones. Bowling is also never something I suceeded at until I couldn't see, now Phil tells me where to aim I do and I don't do to bad. No bumpers needed. Weird.

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