To Know You’re Essentially
ADDICTED TO GOLF
(Excerpted from Golf, In So Many Words - The 257 Most
Essential Things to Know About the Game of Golf by Thomas
Finley, 2004 PublishAmerica
A number of years ago after a less than rewarding round of golf
at the club I came home to spend the balance of my Saturday in the
usual manner. The house was empty as the girls had obviously gone
shopping. First I took about fifteen minutes to chart my round of
golf in my self-developed golfing diary which I keep to rate my
play and to look for trends in my game. I fixed myself a sandwich
and a soda pop then reclined on the couch to relax and watch a little
golf on the tube. Using one of the world’s great inventions,
the remote control I quickly discovered that I could switch back
and forth between the Byron Nelson Classic in Dallas and the senior
event, something called the Centennial or Commemorative or some
other traditional sounding name. Golf is big on tradition, as certainly
you must know by now.
Within a few minutes I drifted into one of those soothing, semi-conscious
states, partly hearing the soft voices of the announcers on television
and partly day dreaming, almost sleeping. I believe on that particular
day I was day dreaming about getting my game in shape to attempt
qualifying for the senior amateur. Could it be possible for a nine
handicapper to improve that much in a month or so? I hum the tune
from “Rocky” as I ponder this question. Nah, no chance
you lame brain! Heck, you can’t even win the second flight
in the club championship, much less a senior qualifier. Dream on!
After drifting off to sleep for a while I was awakened by my barking
dog and set up on the couch. At this very moment I experienced a
very strange sensation. It was as if I was a big old bear coming
out of hibernation or a blind man seeing for the first time. I had
a revelation! Holy Cow! I look around the family room and I see
old hickory shafted golf clubs on the wall. On the bookshelf is
a large gold fish bowl full of old golf balls, every brand you can
imagine. I see several old score cards from favorite rounds are
collecting dust next to a few old trophies. Continuing to look around
I find hundreds of old copies of golf magazines bulging out of a
cabinet and there are a enormous number of photographs of past golf
outings including the Hiccup Cup when I was voted most gross. I
see framed golf prints on every wall, more hickory shafted clubs
and more trophies in a glass case. I open a table drawer and hundred
of old score cards are crammed together and tumble out.
On the coffee table is a favorite book, The Encyclopedia of Golf
Collectibles. In the storage room I find three old sets of clubs
in two old bags plus a junior set I bought for my daughter. I walked
out to the driveway and looked into the trunk of my car I find my
regular golf bag and clubs plus three drivers, six putters, a one
iron, two wedges and a baffler. Gracious! There is also a shag bag
and a shoebox of slightly used golf balls. I sauntered off to my
bedroom and noticed that my bedside table had a stack of seven instructional
books on golf. I slumped down onto the bed feeling sick to my stomach.
Goodness sakes alive! What am I? What have I become? Am I some kind
of depraved, golf addict? My thoughts immediately turned to my lovely
wife and daughters. What must they think of me? Oh no, I’m
sick. My wife is the ultimate golf widow and my children golf orphans.
Oh my, what have I become, what kind of person am I?
I just sat there, almost
in a daze, thinking about how much my life had been influenced and
perhaps changed by this simple little game invented by bored, ignorant
sheep herders in far off Scotland. This game of chasing after a
little white ball over pasture land with a stick in hand has dominated
my life. Even at night in bed I don’t count sheep to fall
asleep I review golf shots from my last round. I must be crazy!
Maybe I should see a psychiatrist. I could call my friend Jack who
is a shrink. But no, no, no...I had just finishing playing 18 holes
with Jack and he went back out to play 18 more. He might be worse
off than me. What to do?
I hear my family open
the door and a smile comes over my lips. “Honey, are you home,”
my wife queried, “did you have a nice game today?” Wow
she’s great I thought. “Daddy, I brought your a present,
it’s the new Golf Digest” my daughter said in a loving
way. Boy, she’s great too. Man, am I a lucky guy or what!
They still love me in spite of all of the golf, abandonment and
stuff. I give my family one big old bear hug, “I love you
all so much,” I said softly. “I love you sooo much.”
The next thought that came to mind was I needed to call the pro
shop and get a tee time for the next day, Sunday. Hopefully she
won’t mind if I skip church tomorrow. Gosh, I’m a lucky
guy! Now what am I going to do with all those old magazines and
scorecards. Maybe there is room in the attic.
As the years have passed
since that day of revelation, I have written one golf book which
was very successful and I am writing my second. I only play about
once a week now but I try to hit a bucket of balls every now and
then. I don’t play at the same level any more. I’m a
12 handicap now. But my desire and quest to become a better golfer
has never waned. I’ve taken a few lessons but I haven’t
allowed any pro to completely rebuild my game. My youngest daughter
took up golf and I made her a set of clubs and coached her high
school team. I forgot to tell you, I am now a clubmaker with workbench
out in the yard house. I make and repair all of my own clubs. When
we moved into our new house a few years ago we did the family room
in a golf motif. At one point I became vice president of our club
and was golf chairman and ran all the tournaments for two or three
years. God I love this game but surely I must be an addict. Do you
think I need help?. Am I a sick-o?
Here are 20 signs you are probably addicted to golf as well and
might need to seek help. You might be addicted...
1. ...when your car trunk has a large tournament golf bag and a
complete set of clubs, a second, carry bag, six extra putters, three
drivers, eight other assorted golf clubs and a box full of used
2. ...when the top drawer of your chest of drawers is full of score
cards and there is no room for your socks. You look through these
cards and some are dated from 10 to 20 years ago.
3. ...when you find your socks, some have little golfers embroidered
on the sides.
4. ...when you look in the mirror and notice how silly you look
wearing boxer shorts with funny little lime green golfers printed
all over them.
5. ...when you look through your personal library and you have every
book ever written on golf. You could open a bookstore.
6. ...when you try to intelligently discuss with friends the “mystical”
golf books Golf in the Kingdom and The Legend of Bagger Vance as
if you understood them. You think you enjoyed them but deep inside
you really aren’t sure.
7. ...when you spend your lunch hour - everyday - browsing through
Pro Golf Discount.
8. ...when your new best friend works behind the counter at the
9. ...when you actually consider playing a round of golf with your
hickory shafted, collectible clubs. You keep putting it off because
you don’t have a gutta-percha golf ball or a feathery to make
it more realistic.
10. ...when you keep putting off your wife’s desire to go
on a cruise because they only have miniature golf on board. Your
idea of a real vacation is a golf package.
11. ...when you take up clubmaking and ponder a career change.
12. ...when you trade in your special edition Volkswagon Bug convertible,
which is growing in value as a collectible, because it doesn’t
have a trunk big enough for all of your golf clubs.
13. ...when you run into your pastor on the street, smile and grab
his hand, but he says, “have we met before?”
14. ...when you finally learn how to play that right to left break
while practice putting in the master bedroom.
15. ...when you haven’t missed a Heritage Golf Classic in
16. ...when you visit your father’s grave and think about
how much better the cemetery would look with Tifton 419 dwarf Bermuda
17. ...when your favorite CD’s are all Scottish bagpipe music.
18. ...when you take a whole roll of film - of your own golf course.
19. ...when every Christmas, birthday or Father’s Day gift
you have received in the last 25 years from anyone have been something
to do with golf.
20. ...when you come home from the golf course and your wife and
kids are gone. They have left a note saying they haven’t seen
you during daylight hours on a weekend for three years and they
are tired of watching The Golf Channel.
Available on-line at www.publishamerica.com
Also available on-line
and other online booksellers
Click here to contact us!