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

Sunday, December 19, 2010

The December Doldrums

It had been eight days since I last visited the Garage Golf Swing Laboratory when I made an appearance there yesterday afternoon...and I had nothing. I seem to have lost my thirst for the ecstasy that is solid contact and my pursuit of a good position at impact seems to have hit a major roadblock. It's cold in the garage and the two feet of snow on the ground outside make the Spring season seem like its many months and months away. I need to be re-invigorated and I know I will be in time, but it's not looking promising right now. I will try to hit some more balls again this afternoon while the kids are trimming the tree over at Gram and Pa's house, but I'm not going to hold my breath regarding any sort of positive results. Seeing the ball flight is such an important mental and emotional part of the process which connects the golfer to the game that I'm just not sure how much more I can get out of beating balls into a net five feet in front of me? I guess I just need to remind myself that the muscle memory that I'm storing up is a positive no matter which way I slice it, and that "not getting better" is analogous to "getting worse" in the Ben Hogan school of thought. And that's a School from which I hope to graduate someday, so I must soldier on.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Or Is It Really The End?

Somehow, after a "come to Jesus" kind of talk, we've decided that I can continue to play golf. I just need to not enjoy it so much? Or keep it in better perspective, or something like that...whatever the case, I'm back on the journey to the center of the clubface. Yippee! We've had snow-cover here in Minnesota for the last four weeks, so there's really no chance of me getting out and playing 'til at least late next March. My wife is teasing me with our trip to Florida in late February including some golf for Yours Truly, but we're going for her 40th birthday so, for some reason, I don't think bringing the sticks will actually be that good of an idea. I haven't really felt like playing much in the last month or so anyways, partly out of frustration with the current state of my game, and partly out of pure scheduling exhaustion. Having two little kids who are growing bigger every day and getting more and more into their own interests and activities makes pursuing one of your own passions seem that much less important, especially when you're not enjoying it as much as you have in the past. So I guess you could say this snow-cover/wintertime temperature drop has come at just the right time. I've made three brief visits to the Garage Golf Swing Laboratory so far and they've each been fruitful in their own way. As a result of them, these things I know for sure: 1) If my grip settles into my fingers and not my palms, and my left wrist stays "high" and slightly ahead of the ball at set-up, I'm going to make a good pass at the ball. 2) If my takeaway is slow and starts with my shoulders, and during which my mind is focused on NOT swaying off the ball and instead just shifting my weight to my right foot, good things will happen later. And 3) If I make an aggressive move toward the ball in the forward-swing, concentrating on keeping my right thumb connected with my left thumb-pad and getting both hands to the "aim point" in front of the ball, impact will be effortless in feel and powerful in its result. That's all I can really ask for right now.