foozle vt foo-zled; foo-zling (1892): to manage or play awkwardly; a bungling golf stroke

Sunday, January 13, 2008


foozle vt foo-zled; foo-zling (1892): to manage or play awkwardly; a bungling golf stroke
My name is Kenny Gunderman and I've been Foozled by golf. From humble beginnings on a farm in southwestern Iowa, I didn't start playing the game in earnest until I reached my 20-somethings just eight years ago. Sure, as a youth I rode around in golf carts on bunker-less executive courses, occasionally taking swipes at the ball with my mother's mismatched sticks. But I never really played the game until the summer I met my future wife. Purely a coincidence, I assure you, but right after we started dating I took to the links with fervor. I remember it as if it were only yesterday...
Some friends of mine mentioned casually over drinks one evening that they were headed out to play nine holes the next day. Needing a fourth, they were more than happy to oblige my request to tag along. We showed up the next day at the Highland 9-hole course late in the afternoon, unannounced, and twenty minutes later we were strolling down the first fairway. I was well on my way to a quadruple-bogey nine, but undeterred I managed to "settle down and get it around" in only 23-over par. Something about the scenery, the greenery, the closely-mown fairways and tee boxes, the subtle contours of the putting surfaces, and that delightful sound the ball would make as it (finally) rattled around in the bottom of the cup made me yearn for more...and more...and more...
Fast-forward to the present day and here I am, a legitimate Golf Nut (registered with the Golf Nut Society, Nut #3898), a card-carrying member of the Shivas Irons Society and the USGA, and a regular member of the Simonson Group on Saturday mornings at Indian Hills Golf Club in Stillwater, Minnesota. I have a closet-full of smartly-logoed golf shirts and I'll play the game at almost any instant, morning or evening, rain or shine, all the while staying happily married and gainfully employed. I'm good for some 50-plus rounds-a-year if I play my cards right and I count three of my greatest lifetime achievements as 1) graduating from college in only four years, 2) being the loving father of the sweetest little 2-year-old girl you've ever met, and 3) putting a lid on the 2003 season with a par at a local muni in late November as half-an-inch of snow covered the course.
So why am I telling you all of this? Well, I've decided to stop trying to conceal my zeal for the game, to stop being ashamed of this obsession of mine and instead embrace it, finally and fully, by sharing my experiences with golfers everywhere as one who's truly been Foozled by golf. As proof, I give you this blog which hopefully won't disappoint you.

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