Pain, Pleasure, Humiliation – Happiness!
If you think degradation can’t make you happy try fencing with a lightening rod against the force of nature for 4 1/2 hours running a little white ball through 7 miles briar and bramble. Or just ask my friend Orell. He calls it the 51st shade of grey. Golf is the cruelest experience between two fairways a human can have. No game is more challenging or absurd. Or addicting. You’re allowed to bring 14 clubs. The most important club is not The Big Dog. It’s the one called Happiness.
The Forever Gift
In the pantheon of characters in my life, Orell is the happiest one. He is uniquely suited for The Game. He’ll never shoot par but today he hit a shot so ludicrous and amazing he fell to the ground and fainted in the throes of joy. It was the only time I ever saw him speechless. The most fascinating thing about him is how he brings his gift of happiness to every aspect of his life: family, friends, enemies, co-workers, whirlpools, golf, basketball, ping pong, chess, crawdads, guacamole, margaritas, Shiner Bock, and twice-a-year – Church. His happiness pisses people off sometimes which only makes him happier. Aristotle taught that “happiness is the end of man.” He may as well been referring to Orell.
Riding home after our round of golf that day, I couldn’t help reflecting on all the great characters in my life and how random it’s all been. Maybe you shouldn’t try to choose your friends after all. But you should definitely try to keep them. Forever.
Memorial Park Golf Course – February 9th 2015
Memorial Park is painted with scene-after-scene of exquisite beauty. It’s everywhere you look. Yet golfers concentrate intensely on keeping their head down and miss the best part of the game. You should always golf with a happy person – they turn degradation inside-out and enable you to see the happiness in it.