good thing you don’t need to be to read this story
A double-eagle! Well done! Good one Lyle.
Not a golfer either, in fact as a City kid who grew up skateboarding and flipping the bird at whoever we thought looked like yuppies, I had a lot of early laughs at the idea of golf as a sport, which just seemed totally ridiculous at the time. ...but now, from a lifetime of pursuing everything from rock climbing and trail running to cross-country paragliding (not to be confused with "parasailing," which is tourist ride, not a sport) and long-distance kitesurfing (by which I mean truly long distance, like 500+km) I know what it feels like to engage my body with the physical world in a particular way, get better at it, get good at it, and even master certain aspects of it—and still, as you point out, there is no such thing as perfection. There's always room to stretch and grow further. Games and sports make it physical and make it visible, and who knows, maybe I'll even play golf one day. I still never have, but your story makes it more appealing than it's ever seemed to me in the past.
I wrote something along these lines not long ago on
Why I No Longer Cringe at Being Called a "Kitesurfer" →
What a story. The Dude Abides.
I'm married to a golfer and for many years we picked our vacations with golf courses in mind. So we went to Ireland and Scotland. He played in Normandy and Belgium. Portugal was also on the menu. I thought about playing and even took classes but the time the sport requires stopped me (and I don't handle frustration well, lol. I'm likely to sit down in the grass and cry!). On the other hand, I enjoy walking the courses with my husband. I consider it a good round when I collect more balls from the rough than he manages to loose. There was an afternoon in Scotland in the wind and rain though that got us both hitting the pub afterwards!
Miraculously, this story kept me engaged and interested -- even though I know nothing about golf and am not a fan or player of any sport. So that is excellent writing, if you ask me! That two on a five par hole was thrilling and I was right there with you. Lyle. But a $50,000 initiation fee for the privilege of taking a long walk and hitting a ball around with a club seems madness to me, I have to confess. There is obviously something else going on besides the game.
A neat little piece, Lyle! :) I'm not a golfer (I must admit that I don't really understand it as a sport), but I enjoyed reading your recollections and thoughts about the game. I bet that albatross shot felt amazing.
I've never been sporty, unless you count the whiffle ball and badminton I used to play in the backyard with my parents and my brother, lol. The closest thing for me is strength training. I recently tried a couple of 1 rep max lifts and was kind of stunned to find that I can deadlift 175. I guess you could call that my albatross equivalent?
I picked up golf during COVID when all my other recreational sports got shut down, and I'm enjoying it more than I thought I would! It's just crazy how the more I try to go for that big shot I end up playing worse, and when I let my guard down and just let the club follow its course, I tend to hit a lot better. Probably the only sport I'm better at when I consciously put less, more intentional effort into it
Now talk about the particularities of the knuckle-curve and it’s historical significance to te McKeanys 😂😂😂