Tag Archives: Lessons


Ty and Jesse,

I have learned valuable life lessons during my time on earth.  Many times those teachings have come at a personal price.  As I close in on my 50th birthday, I want to provide you guidance.  It should be expected that you will experience disappointment, frustration and anger during your lives.  My objective is to provide you the perspective of a seasoned human who happens to be your dad.

  • Love one another and remain good friends.
  • Work hard. The most successful people are generally the hardest workers.
  • Be humble. You will have successes in life. Recognize the help that you have received.
  • Own and operate a business. Cut your own path in life.
  • Don’t put yourself in a situation that will be hard to recover from.
  • Be respectful. Specifically, of women and authority.
  • Be empathetic. Never sit in judgement of others.
  • Always do your best. If you commit to something, do what it takes to be successful.
  • Never let the fear of failure undermine what you want to accomplish.
  • Beware of who you trust. Most people have good intentions.
  • Let people earn your friendship. Once they have done so, remain loyal.
  • Take a breath before you make a decision. Analysis does not always equate to paralysis.
  • Take it slow with the ladies. This will be hard but it is necessary.
  • When you financially make it, pretend like you haven’t.
  • Adequately prepare yourself for anything you deem important.
  • Never be afraid to ask for help.
  • Choose the right mentors.
  • Be disciplined in your life pursuits. There are many distractions.  Ignore the noise.
  • Apologize when you are wrong.
  • Help people who cannot help themselves.
  • Be charitable but cautious with your money.
  • Say, “please”, “thank you” and “you’re welcome” when appropriate.
  • Don’t idolize anyone.
  • Learn something new every day.
  • Don’t let your emotions dictate how you perform.
  • Take the time to enjoy what the world offers. Life moves fast.
  • Move around or through your adversaries.
  • Always believe in yourself and never quit.
Jesse (9) and Ty (11)
Jesse (9) and Ty (11)

The Unrelenting Dilemma of a Nine Handicap

The relentless quest of a manageable, confident golf swing has me perplexed and frustrated right now (as well as pissed off).  The one thing all passionate golfers have in common is the desire to constantly get better.  Practice, unfortunately is not the key to unbridled success…..unless of course what you’re practicing contradicts the thing that forced you to practice in the first place.  It seems that once you “fix” one part of your game, something else breaks.   Last spring, without anything I consciously did, I became one with my game.  Honestly I was hitting the ball 10% farther, while lowering my handicap to a six; it was heaven!   My brush with golf greatness lasted until late June as my game turned ugly, resulting in my handicap soaring to a 9 (mathematically almost impossible to do in 4 months).  A deep golf depression set in as I have yet to work it out. 

Here is the current, maddening issue that I am desperately trying to repair.

  • After completing a semi-hideous backswing, my right elbow detaches from my body, and points towards left field (classic chicken-wing), never to make contact with my right rib again.
  • As I awkwardly return to the ball, my best fly fishing technique takes over and fractures every angle earned during the prior motion.
  • The end result is a forced hand flip at the ball that miraculously gets the Pro V1 airborne.
  • Distance and accuracy are obviously compromised, but it is the consistency that has me vexed. 

I have searched for answers over the last 6 months.  Here is what I have found:

Golf Magazines                        

  • Most of the lessons/tips provided are difficult to understand.  When you do understand the guidance, generally the “move” opposes something from an article from a prior magazine.
  • Magazines shill for their advertisers – the equipment manufacturers.  When they tell me that after a custom fitting, an 18 handicap can now hit his tee ball 30 yards further, I feel like vomiting.

Training Aids  

  • I own every golf training aid produced over the last 15 years (if you do not believe me check my basement).
  • Some have merit…..most just become a short-term paycheck for a washed up tour player/swing guru.
  • I do not remember one training aid having a profound impact on my game….not one?

Your PGA Professional

  • How does the same swing issue result in differing root causes from 10 different instructors?  I demonstrate the same unappealing swing to all of these guys, and each one tells me something different is wrong.
  • Recently, I succumbed to a GolfTEC advertisement, and went in for a consultation ($99).  The instructor was pleasant, candid and insightful –then the lesson ended and the sales pitch began.  He told me that it would take “between 10 and 20 ½ hour lessons in order to fix my swing.” Of course those happened to be the premier instruction packages GolfTEC sells.   After multiple calls, I purchased the 10 pack – I will let you know the results over the next two months.


  • Yes, I will spend thousands on a game in disrepair.  That said, I now realize that anything new from TaylorMade, Callaway, Titleist, Ping etc. only pacifies me until ball contact.  At that point I realize that my reverse Jim Furyk is still solidly intact.   

My dreams about playing in a state amateur event are fading by the day.  I can only hope my persistency pays off so I do not embarrass myself in the two member/guests I play in every year. 

More to come as the season pushes forward. 

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