Monday, August 24, 2009

Finally, A Breakthrough

You know what it's like - practice, practice, practice and practice some more. You expect results. You hope to be able to handle whatever level of pressure you are facing, hoping that the practice and past experiences will allow you to advance further than the previous effort.

In other words - after choking away prior opportunities, you are desperate to make progress. And today I did!

In the Qualifier for the GAM Net Amateur, yours truly shook off the bad memories of last year's horrendous performance (taking a 10 on a short par 4 tends to diminish the chances of advancing), to post a 75 gross, 69 net and advance to the finals in mid-September.

I'm not delusional enough to think the general public was waiting with baited breath for the bottom-of-the-screen ticker to proclaim the news of my round. I realize that very few care. But it doesn't really matter, does it? That's one of the things that makes golf special.

It's a showdown featuring you vs. you. When things go poorly, there's no coach to fire, no draft pick to select, and no lineman to blame for a bad penalty. It's all on your shoulders, good or bad. For anyone who has played the game over a span of years, my guess is that golf has more often kicked you in the teeth than it has patted you on the back.

So please forgive me for smiling a bit today. Sometimes it just feels good to play well, have a score to demonstrate that good play, and advance to swing again another day.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

The Ideal Viewing Recipe

The season's final major has come at an unfortunate time, coinciding with the arrival of summer in the Upper Peninsula. After several weeks of abnormally cold and wet conditions up north, the 90s have arrived and being outside is the ideal scenario for enjoying God's country.

One problem - the PGA Championship is taking place and a golf nut like me wants to see the final round. Having no DVR in the north, and finding out late in the game the the digital converter boxes don't work in the hinterlands, I was forced to scramble and search for a remedy to the dilemma.

To the rescue comes the PGA of America and that imaginary innovator/inventor Al Gore. As I write this, I'm sitting on the deck overlooking the lake, watching the final round in HD streaming video on my laptop.

Tiger and YE Yang (who?) are on the 3rd hole and I still can't quite shake the fact that my 11-year old son has never lived without the internet. I can still recall being on vacation on this very lake and trying to position the tinfoil just right on the rabbit ears so I could see a fuzzy black and white game between the Tigers and Yankees. Now I'm sitting here watching Tiger chase history.

So, thank you Lord for the beauty of Piatt Lake...and thank you Al Gore for pretending to invent the internet!

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

The Sad End is Here

The Buick Open is officially gone. Done. History. Another kick in the teeth for the Michigan economy. Another example of what happens when Americans ask the government to do their thinking and decision-making for them. Big Brother doesn't like golf, so we have no more Buick Open. How sad.

For the complete story, please click here.