The thing about golf, bless its charbroiled heart, is that just when you get that hitch worked out of your swing at the tee box, your putting heads south on the green. I mean Bahamas. Bermuda Triangle. Don’t expect a post card.
I was putting up a storm for the first four weeks of league play – sinking fifteen-footers blind folded – easing the ball over ridges, reading breaks perfectly and sinking balls that impressed even me. But now? I’m putting like I’m trying to airmail the ball straight to Kansas. Translation: five, six, SEVEN unnecessary strokes on the card this week and the disappointing up-tick in my trend. Shazang. Dang. Shazang.
VODKA IS MEDICINAL
In hindsight, those wayward shots were kind of funny (processed and released with the aid of a vodka exorcism at the 19th) – just my brain’s way of playing hide-and-seek with me. GOTCHA. On the course, though, the whole thing was annoyingly unpredictable. I’d spank a drive that for all the world looked like it was heading straight up the middle of the fairway, only to see it fade, and keep on faaaaading into to the deep grass on the right – that teeming ecosystem of voracious ticks and chiggers lying in wait for their next meal. (Me.) Then, to prove that consistency is the last refuge of the hopelessly unimaginative, I would grip-it-and-rip-it on the next hole, straight as an arrow, smack on the sweet spot, and stare down my head-space with a message: two can play this game, sista. (BACK ATCHA.)
LET THOSE SQUIRRELY SHOTS GO
The good news is that despite this minor putting setback, Dr. Rotella’s advice appears to have permeated my right hemisphere and inclined me to shrug off the squirrely shots and move on now. I mean, if the pros are torpedoing balls into the rough with millions of dollars on the line (my condolences, Dustin), who am I to fret about a few directionally-challenged putts and a $5 skin? Besides, next week, when I have this putting thing all sorted out again, I’ll probably start shanking the ball into the woods or something. Can’t wait.
For now, the game plan is to focus on the target, only the target, and make that my last thought before striking the ball. New mantra: Ommmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm, commit to the stroke. Ommmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm, be the ball. Ommmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm, BE THE FRIGGIN’ HOLE.