Wednesday, July 22, 2015

On Golf and Golfing - The Five Stages of Grief

“On Golf and Golfing –The Five Stages of Grief” * * * * * * * Being only vaguely familiar with Swiss psychiatrist Kubler-Ross’s five stages of grief as described in On Death and Dying won’t stop me from suggesting that in golf, there are the same five stages of grief after a bad round of golf. * * * * * * * Denial – I can’t believe I shanked that ball into the water. I can’t believe I hit that drive out of bounds. I can’t believe I still play this game. I can’t believe you made that 45 foot breaking putt. These greens suck. These fairways are terrible. These clubs are too old. I need a new three wood. * * * * * * * Anger –Broken clubs are a not totally uncommon sight in the small steel mesh trash bins found next to the ball washers on each tee box. Loud curses of “F***,” “Son of a b****,” “God d*** it,” “Sh**,” are all too often heard on golf courses, especially if Tiger Woods is playing. I’ve personally seen players, ordinarily sane and rational people, break clubs on trees, fence posts, concrete cart paths, and over knees. I’ve seen entire bags of clubs thrown into ponds. Anger is stage two. Rory McIlroy threw his 3 iron into a pond at the Doral, Florida in March of this year. Tommy Bolt, Sergio Garcia, Craig Stadler, John Daly, Henrik Stensen, Colin Montgomerie, all professional golfers, have broken more than one club smashing it into the ground, over a knee, or tree during a round of golf……..* * * * * * * * Bargaining – Please God, let me break 80 today. Please God, let me make this putt and I’ll never play on a Sunday morning again….. “Well, at least it’s good exercise,” we say as we make bogey after bogey after bogey. Or "A bad day on the golf course is better than a good day at the office." * * * * * * * * Depression – Feelings of emptiness then intrude when we shoot a 92 or miss that 4 footer for a 79. A realization that we may never have another good round of golf is accompanied by a deep and abiding sadness. The feeling that you’ll never play again is common. * * * * * * * Acceptance – But in a day or two, one accepts the new reality embodied in that last round and gets back to living life. In fact, we most often begin to enjoy life again. And then before you know it, you’re on the phone to Shoreline or Benson to get a Friday afternoon tee time……….and actually look forward to it all over again.


Blogger Unknown said...

You could rename this " The Five Reasons I never took up golf." Sounds like a sport for stronger persons than me.

6:51 PM  

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