“Golf is a sport unlike any other.”
It’s a cliché used far too much. Of course, it’s different, just as all sports are different. It’s different in goal; different in strategy; different in purpose, etc. What stands out for me, though, is how golf is different in confusion. So little is easily, readily understandable about the game, such that it makes the pros seem like geniuses.
When you slice a drive, what exactly have you done? Was it an open face, or an extremely inside-out swing? Was it a little of both? And how did that happen? Was it my grip, or the flex in my elbows? Or was it also a little of both? And compared to other sports, golf’s confusion is unlike any other.
When a basketball shot clanks off the backboard, it’s easy to see that the shooter put a little too much oomph behind it. When Aaron Rodgers overthrows Jordy Nelson, there’s a reason between the two as to why the ball skipped to the turf instead of Nelson’s timely paws. On the golf course, so much is left to confusion, and it can be maddening.
Well, duh. After all, it’s a violent motion that propels a metal object toward and through a much smaller, molded, dimpled ball. Looking at golf, the physics of baseball look like pre-algebra. There are times where I’d gladly trade in my driver for an aluminum bat. In fact, right now is one of those times.
I’ve reached that moment, the midsummer moment where golf becomes too maddening. April and May were good enough to create high, handicap-heeling hopes of owning the game. Hopes of breaking 80. Hopes of finally carding an ace. Hopes of breaking 80 a second time.
They aren’t quite dashed, but they sure seem hilarious right now.
It’s been two weeks since I last stood on a tee box and two more since I really enjoyed it. The most recent attempt saw a swing change mid round and a finishing six holes that read: par, double bogey, par, triple bogey, birdie, double bogey. Yikes.
That is the definition of maddening confusion, and it has strangled the life out of my desire. I can’t let it continue, though. That is the greatest challenge of golf: being knocked down harder than Rocky and getting back on that tee box.
That’s where I am right now, because I delight in the challenge.
So what, Sean? Was this article anything more than an update on the golf writer who continues to fail at taming the game of his profession? Hopefully. Hopefully it is an inspiration for the less genius golfers out there…or anyone else dealing with that midsummer moment of golf course misery.
Just know you are not alone. We’re all a little confused out there.