Golf to me is a renewal, a rebirth, 18 holes to correct the mistakes of the last time. Golf gives you a clean scorecard every time. Oh, if life was only that easy.
I started to play golf with my father when I was young. I only had one problem with Golf I convinced myself I could become a much better player by a simple upgrade in equipment. I wanted a single digit handicap. In other words I wanted to break 80 every round I played. So I bought some new clubs. My new set of clubs were Taylor Made Speed blades, they were the top of the line. In fact, I broke 80 for the first time with my new set of Taylor Made Speed blades and the $800.00 I spent. I felt it was well worth it. However, I figured if I can break 80 with this set just imagine what I could do with a newer set.
That is why I bought 4 new sets of clubs, to shoot lower scores. I also bought many individual clubs to give me that extra help to shoot lower scores. Wedges, Drivers, Chippers, and training aids. I must have bought 25 different Hat’s. Putting became the key to my breaking 80 and my quest for a single digit handicap. Putting became so important, I began to suck at putting. I got the yips… the yips mean you cannot put the ball in the hole. I tried everything to cure the yips. I tried every grip on the putter known to man. The right hand low grip, the left hand low grip, the claw grip, the hold my wrist grip and many others but I still had the yips. I watched endless video and practiced like crazy, I still could not cure the yips. I was pissed I decided there was only one answer to the yips. I noticed Tiger Woods did not have the yips, I would buy the same putter Tiger Woods uses. A Scottie Cameron Bulls Eye Putter for the very reasonable price of $350.00. WHAT!!! for a Putter. “Yes”, said the salesman “It’s the gold standard of putters and Tiger Woods uses it.” “Of course, he does, I will take it.” So, I started to practice with the Scottie Cameron Bulls Eye Putter and I made every putt. The Bulls Eye was worth it, I was on my way to greatness.
Until I got out on the course! Where I could not make one putt, the hole could have been as big a manhole cover, the ball was not going in, the yips returned. I went back to the store and told the salesman my sad story he said “All sales are final but I can give you a store credit.” I said “I would love a store credit, if I could find something in the store, I don’t already have” I figured the best way to cure the yips was to buy some books and videos on the putting. Here are some of the titles I am proud to own. “The Art of Putting”, “ZEN Putting”, “The Putter’s Mind”, “10 minutes a day for One Month to Putting Greatness”, “Putt like a Pro in 30 minutes” you save a lot of time with this one, “Putt like Tiger Woods”, “Putt like Anika Sorensen”, and finally a book called “Just Put the Damn Ball in the Hole”. And that was just the books on Putting. I also have lots of putting training aids. The Putting Ramp, The Putting Arch, Putting String, and a Putting Metronome. I bought stuff on The Swing, the Finish, Four books on The Short Game. “Ray Floyd’s 60 Yards In” I have the book and the video. “The Dave Pelz The Short Game Bible” “Stan Utley’s “Hit It Close” and Tom Watson’s “My Short Game and How to Learn It”. I have books on iron play, sand play, how to play in good weather, bad weather, snow, flood or earthquake. As you can see I had a lot of books.
Did any of this shit help NO!!! I still had the yips and couldn’t break 80 in fact I was struggling to break 90. The only way to break 80 again was to use my best club… my pencil!!!! I think I finally realized I was in big trouble when I went into Rodger Dunn Golf this huge Golf Store, on Victory Blvd, for my daily fix and, said to the salesman. “I guess you moved the golf hats, they were over there yesterday.” I quit playing golf… I have not played golf in 5 years. I am sad because I loved to play golf. But golf has gone the way of many childhood dreams like playing second base for the Dodgers, becoming the first American Pope or doing Hamlet with the Royal Shakespeare Company. But where one door closes another opens and I have been giving a great deal of thought to writing the next Great American Novel.