GET INTO GOLF: The game of golf often requires comedic relief | TheUnion.com

GET INTO GOLF: The game of golf often requires comedic relief

John Renslow
Golf Columnist

With the game of golf comes an abundance of humor and philosophy.

Many have called golf a "microcosm of life." In life, you cannot take yourself too seriously and the game appears to offer a stern reproach for those who think more highly of themselves than they should. On the flip side, players are often rewarded when they simply seek recreation or competition with a spirit of humility and a light heart.

Interesting that some of the globe's funniest folks as well as political leaders have become ambassadors for golf and most of us have fond memories of Bob Hope and Bing Crosby or President John F. Kennedy strolling down the fairway. Today, we have Bill Murray and Ray Romano or President George W. Bush who help carry the torch to television viewers throughout the year.

The game's dichotomy of pleasure and pain will often require comedic relief or sentimental moment. Recognizing this may even improve your game, for in order to be a good player, you will likely need to smile in the face of adversity while still being able to laugh at yourself.

Here are several stories, quips and quotes that should put a smile on your face or provide a contemplative moment.

"They say golf is like life, but I don't believe them. Golf is more complicated than that." ­— Gardner Dickinson.

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"Man blames fate for all other accidents, but feels personally responsible when he makes a hole-in-one" ­— Bishop Sheen.

"I'm hitting the woods just great; but having a terrible time getting out of them!" ­— Buddy Hackett.

"I don't say my golf game is bad, but if I grew tomatoes they'd come up sliced." ­— Arnold Palmer.

"The only time my prayers are never answered is on the golf course." ­— Billy Graham.

"It takes longer to learn to be a good golfer than it does to become a brain surgeon. On the other hand, you don't get to ride around on a cart, drink beer and eat hot dogs if you are performing brain surgery."

"The less skilled the player, the more likely he is to share his ideas about the golf swing."

"I have come to think that a person grows in his regard for the rules as he improves his game. The best players come to love golf so much they hate to see it violated in any way." — Michael Murphy

Please consider these helpful hints before your next round; a ball you can see in the rough from 50 yards away is not yours — It's easier to get up at 6 a.m. to play golf than at 10 a.m. to mow the yard. — You can hit a two-acre fairway 10 percent of the time and a two-inch branch 90 percent of the time.

Or, think about the contents of these unwritten books; "How to properly line up your fourth putt," "How to get more distance off the shank," "How to rationalize a six-hour round," "How to let a foursome play through your twosome," "How to relax when you're hitting three off the tee," "When to suggest major swing corrections to your opponent," and a personal favorite, "When to re-grip your ball retriever."

You gotta love it. Take the game seriously, but don't take yourself too seriously. Who knows? It may help your game.

"Golf is deceptively simple and endlessly complicated; it satisfies the soul and frustrates the intellect. It is at the same time rewarding and maddening – and it is without a doubt the greatest game mankind has ever invented." — Arnold Palmer.

John Renslow is a PGA Class A Professional and Instructor at Alta Sierra Country Club. Please contact John with your questions or comments at jrenslow@yahoo.com.