Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Chicken Scratch about Golf That's Worth Reading

Slammin' Sam on Sports Media

Don’t worry. We’re not becoming a golf blog here at Free Keon. We’ll leave the reinvention stuff to Madonna.

Nonetheless, this week I do have a golf book for you to pick up. Champions Tour Co-founder Gardner Dickinson had this to say about golf: They say golf is like life, but don't believe them. Golf is more complicated than that. Published in 2009, “Chicken Soup for the Soul: The Golf Book” is where life and the dogged pursuit called golf intersect.

Read this compilation of short stories because:

1. Every sports fan knows that a game has the power to bring people together in a way that otherwise would not be possible, if allowed.

Sadly, Bruce McCall was never afforded an invitation into his father’s private world. “Such a chance for sustained proximity to that all-powerful figure was pitifully rare away from the golf course,” he writes (Chicken, 4). In spite of the fact that he always felt restricted to a respectable following distance as his father’s caddy and in life, McCall determined to play the game of sport and life differently.

Brian Amos Fox recalls far different memories with his father in the next section. For him, playing golf allowed for a fun time, complete with hot dogs and runaway golf carts (68).

Harry L. Dauberger came across his grandfather’s poem and found the lessons still applicable today. “Golf shall teach you patiently. Adversity to meet.” it read in part (172). Whatever you need, you can likely find on the links.

2. “Golf is full of reward but seemingly incapable of forgiveness, which makes it an ideal endeavor for those whose lives need a bit of reshaping,” John Hawkins writes on pg. 195.

In Bob Carney’s case, that “reshaping” consisted of new horizons, thanks to golf. Carney earned an Evans’ Scholarship that allowed him to go to college. His recollection of the interview process resonates with an uneasiness we’ve all faced at one time or another.

“Dressed in an un-caddie like jacket and tie, finger nails scrubbed, I sat sweating in a small room at the Dearborn Country Club I’d never been in before. For forty-five minutes, I fielded their questions and explained why I thought I ‘deserved’ the scholarship. Though, of course, I believed no such thing. In the end … the fact that they knew my parents would never let me flunk out won them over (281-82).

3. For the golf enthusiasts who would rather stick to the game, rather than its metaphors, there’s plenty of that too – Check out the “Recovery Shots”, “Swing Thoughts” and “Grinders” sections, in particular.

Personally, I’m eager for more of JB’s mini-golf coverage. In the meantime, hit up these YouTube mini-golf clips!

Thanks for reading! As always, if you have something you’d like to see get the Slammin’ Sam treatment, let me know.

Sam Miller/Free Keon

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