My son thinks I'm a golfing god

I haven't beaten one of my golfing buddies in well over a year. I've been drastically altering my grip and swing, but I'm also just not as good as the guys who I play with. They hit the ball farther and more consistently than me.  

I managed to squeak out a tie against one of them this summer, which almost felt like a victory.

But I'm getting better. Hitting the ball farther. More consistently. Understanding all that was lacking from my game. Still, beating any one of them is probably a ways off. 

It's fine. I love golf. My father-in-law gave up the game years ago when he realized that he was never going to break 100. I understand his desire to be competitive, but even if I never beat a single person again for the rest of my life, I'd still play the game. 

But it sure would be nice to win again. 

As the summer drew to a close, Elysha and I took the kids to mini golf. 

The one thing I can do on a golf course is putt. A three-putt is a rarity for me, and when I'm reading the greens well, I can sink long putts.

Sadly, the expression "Drive for show, putt for dough" doesn't apply when you hit your driver as far as your friends hit their pitching wedges. 

An exaggeration, but only slightly.   

On the nineteenth hole of mini golf, I sunk the miracle putt to win a free game. As the buzzer sounded, my children went wild. My son told everyone in the vicinity that I had won a free game, and he kept telling them until we finally walked away. 

Honestly, it wasn't luck. It was a straight putt that needed to be struck just hard enough to leap over two troughs and land in the hole without going past. I judged the distance carefully and swung. 

It dropped. 

Two weeks later and Charlie still talks about that putt. My free game. My miracle shot. 

I'd still rather beat one of my friends occasionally. I'd like to be a competitive factor as we make our way into the final hole. But if that can't happen, Charlie's belief that I am an amazing golfer is a solid consolation prize. 

7 much-needed rules for golf according to me (which makes them absolutely correct)

Putt every putt. If the six inch putt is a forgone conclusion, then just putt the damn thing. Conceding putts only serves to assist the players who can't putt or those who suffer from the yips while marginalizing the advantage of players who excel under pressure. 


Every golfer should have a system for not forgetting their wedge by the green. If you forget your wedge more than once during a single round of golf, you must forfeit ownership of the club to a fellow player for one calendar year.  


Handicaps are fine for determining tournament seeding and groupings, but they should never be used in actual competition. No other sport artificially adjusts the score to accommodate for a lack of skill. Also, claiming victory over your opponent thanks to the advantage of a handicap is pathetic and shameful. You honestly shouldn't be allowed to play golf ever again.  


Every golfer should be allowed to chop down one tree in his or her life without penalty. This must be done with an axe. Chainsaws are too easy, and nothing about golf should ever be easy.  


Players who roll their balls out of divots are breaking the rules, regardless of weather or season. These players are also fancy-pants golfers who require the ground to be pristine in order to swing, which is lame and stupid. Hit the damn ball where it lies. That is the essence of golf. 

As an alternative, go play mini golf. There are no divots amongst the windmills and water features of a mini golf course, and you can usually get an ice cream cone after the round.


Dress codes are nonsense and should be eliminated entirely. They serve no useful purpose and only cause golfers to be perceived as elitist jackasses. Dress codes are also nonexistent at many public golf courses, so don't allow your pretentious friends to bully you into colored shirts and plaid pants when playing these courses. Wear whatever the hell you want. You're an adult, goddamn it. 


No mulligans. Ever. There is nothing uglier and more idiotic on a golf course than a golfer taking a mulligan. 

Putt-Putt Perfection

The Friday and Saturday nights of my youth were often spent at a now-defunct Putt-Putt course in Framingham, Massachusetts.


I was not seeking putting perfection as much as I was attempting to impress girls with my wit and guile, but beneath the desire to make girls laugh and demonstrate my male prowess was an almost equally strong desire to win.

I was shooting for a hole-in-one every time.  

The chase of perfection is noble at any level. When achieved, it is a great thing, even on a mini golf course.

This is a great short film about the chase for Putt Putt perfection.