I played golf the other day with a friend who had a really bad day.
Every other shot, it seemed, ended in the woods, in the water or in the bunker.
By the time the agony stopped he had recorded a terrifying 114.
Afterward, the man was crushed. He felt almost as bad as a Hillary voter on the morning after and I felt compelled to offer some consoling words.
Our conversation went something like this:
Listen, Ted (not his real name), I know you’re disappointed but you’ve got to snap out of it.
We’ve all been there, you know. Me? A 114? Well, no.
But, see, Ted, I can’t count past 100. No mathematical genius here, you know.
So, no, I’ve never written 114 on my scorecard. Okay, there was that 106, but that’s because another guy was keeping score, the dirty rat.
The thing is, you have to remember that a lot of people don’t even think of golf as a sport.
It may be a four-letter word, but many, many people say golf, at its core, is just a game. They say it’s not as complicated as Parcheesi.
I’m not so sure, though, Ted. I think anyone who says golf is not a sport has never drilled a four-foot putt.
We both know that sinking a four-footer is the purest example of athletic skill: the exquisite meshing of eye and hands and muscle and ball. Plunk! It’s a beautiful sound.
Oh, sure, I know you’ve told me many times golf will never match pickleball for sheer athleticism.
I can’t argue that, Ted, because I don’t even know what pickleball is.
But I know you’re good at it. In fact, many, many people have told me you could be a professional if more Americans knew about pickleball. What is pickleball gain?
But I digress.
The thing is, Ted, you’ve really got to put this latest round in perspective.
I’m betting that someday, many years from now, while you’re busy planting daisies at Sunrise Assisted Living, you’re gonna take a long look back and whisper, maybe to your little dog Fluffy, “I'd sure love to rip just one more Callaway into the pond at 18.”
So, Ted, I’m going to tell you the same thing I told myself on that morning after:
What goes around comes around, the birds will sing, the flowers will bloom and, while it may seem like a hard-knock life right now, the sun will come out tomorrow ... tomorrow ... tomorrow...
Contact Bob Bestler at firstname.lastname@example.org.