Monday, March 17, 2008

... and on the 8th day, God made golf

Author's Note: The following column was published in the March 6 edition of the Dallas Morning News Collin County Opinion pages.
It is written that, in the beginning, God created Heaven and earth. On the seventh day, He rested. A few weekends later, He displayed his incredible sense of humor and in­vented … golf.
That is the only explanation. Otherwise the game makes no sense.
After all, the concept defies explanation. Hit a little white ball, go find it hundreds of yards away, lying somewhere between trees and tall hay. When you find it, you hit it again ... and again ... and again ... until it falls into a hole no wider than a coffee cup.
And when that happens, pick up the little white sphere, march to the next tee, and proceed to repeat the en­tire process. For 17 more holes.
Under a blistering sun. Dying of thirst. Shaking like a leaf. Dog tired. Ready to col­lapse.
Or until you run out of those little white things. Whichever comes first.
It isn’t blasphemous to believe that God can be funny. The human race was made in His image, and we laugh our heads off all the time. Hence, God must possess a crackling wit and a wicked sense of humor.
Otherwise how do you explain a platypus? (Is it a beaver or a duck?) Or penguins (funny looking birds with feathers that can’t fly). Or the AMC Pacer? Or the Texas (baseball) Rangers? Or Sunjaya’s hair?
Lord only knows ... so to speak.
Obviously, God looked down at Adam, bounding around the Garden of Eden in his Ralph Lauren Polo fig leaf, representing Mankind, and He wasn’t happy.
God must have thought, “Adam looks too content, too comfortable, too at ease. I’ll invent something that will drive him crazy, keep him totally frustrated, perplexed, unnerved and exasperated.
“There’s already a woman in his life, so I guess I’ll just add golf.”
And that is how it happened. I read it in the Gospel According to (Ben) Hogan.
Soon, Adam reacted much like the rest of us to this newly-formed recreational activity. He left the Garden early in the morning with his clubs for the course, with Eve wondering when, or if, she would get him to cut the grass or do his chores around the hut.
Eventually Adam became obsessed with such terms as “cavity back,” “bermuda grass,” “draw,” “fade,” “you da man,” and “that dog will hunt.” When Adam would shout about “snaking” in a putt, Eve might have taken that a little too much to heart.
One day, Adam had enough of the game and tossed his clubs into the River Styx. He swore never to play the sport again ... unless God invented some Big Berthas that Adam could afford.
When Adam looked toward the heavens and questioned his Master, a sudden bolt of lightning cut through the sky. God had heard enough and ended the conversation abruptly.
“Be lucky I haven’t thought of bowling yet.”
Adam immediately looked for an apple to bite.
And we’ve had the “sport” of golf ever since.
Chuck Bloom, who was once called “Moses” by a caddy because he spent SO much time in sandtraps, is a former Texas columnist-edito-newspaper publisher.

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