“I can sum it up like this: Thank God for the game of golf.”
-- Seven-time Major winner Arnold Palmer (1929 to 2016).
It is difficult for non-golfers to understand why millions of us get such enjoyment from trying to get a little white ball into a small hole (4 ¼ inches in diameter to be exact). My wonderful non-playing wife, Nancy, says I am “obsessed with an addiction.” My counter to her diagnosis is, “At least you always know where I am.” That response always makes her smile.
Well, as golfers, we know there are an infinite number of reasons why we are under the influence of THE WORLD’S GREATEST GAME. What are your reasons? A few of mine are:
When you hit a great shot, you feel like you own the game.
You can curve the ball – left to right and right to left.
All of nature’s whims -- wind, rain, sun, fog, sleet and even a few snow flurries.
If you dare, you can call your shot -- “High draw”; “A going 4 iron”; “Chunk and run from the bunker.”
You can deliberately hit the ball past the pin and draw it back to within inches of the hole. (I have seen this happen when playing with some of my low-handicap friends, although I can’t say that I have done it.)
“A round of golf should permit 18 inspirations.” – Golf course architect A. W. Tillinghast (1874 to 1942). His courses include: Baltusrol, Bethpage State Park (Black), San Francisco Golf Club, Winged Foot (West and East)
A new putter really can result in more made putts.
Swinging hard is fun -- but not always smart.
Golf buddies can grow old together.
At just the right moment, a little gamesmanship – a verbal dagger – can raise an eyebrow or two and result in a good laugh. Word Of Caution: Be sure that if you dish it out, that you also can take it. Even though it was said to me, my all-time favorite needle is: “That's a great shot with that swing." Now that line that can create serious doubt if your game is on the fragile side like mine.
The handicap system allows players of various abilities to play with and compete against each other.
There is enough time between shots to share a joke with your partners – or think about all of the wonderful things in your life.