As time is flying by I am finding myself empathising and beginning to understand many new different things in life; culture, race, failure, important matters worth learning about. There is however another side to my ageing process, one which has seen all degrees of sympathy dramatically diminish. This blog is about them people who yoyo in and out of obsession, the ‘Late Dreamers’.
The other day I bumped into an old acquaintance on the driving range who informed me of how he intends to “get right back in to golf, and get good”. There is nothing wrong with that comment except he had that look in his eye which severed apart his modest tone and displayed his true ambition; “to try to become what I always wanted to be, a golfer”. The amount of times I’ve had people tell me this I actually find worrying. What was particularly shocking about this time though is he must be 28 years old, owns a company with ten employees and hasn’t played a round of golf for five years! Reading that you may think I’ve misunderstood the man, I was hoping the same until he told me how he’s started working with a psychologist (whom I know and isn’t cheap) and hopes to spend six nights a week hitting balls. (part of me wanted to say seven still won’t be enough)
Honestly, thinking as laterally as I can, I am lost as to what goes through the minds of people who tell me stories like this. Do they think golf is like plumbing? Realism is a celestial quality, ironically. I am conscious I may be sounding harsh, but at the time of writing I was 22 years old and already aware of how becoming an Astronaut was probably past me.
The thing with plumbing is, you train for roughly four years and providing you haven’t flooded the local area you graduate with a basic required standard ready for labour. The thing with golf is, you train for four years and providing you haven’t prank-phone-called anybody you shouldn’t have, you graduate with a standard somewhere between nowhere near good enough and the best. But if when you graduate you are nowhere near good enough, putting another four years in doesn’t mean you’ll become the best, because the best don’t stop. This theory doesn’t warrant a Nobel Prize for myself, it’s basic knowledge. This is surely where the ‘Late Dreamers’ are going wrong.
I am extremely conscious however of unwittingly damaging peoples feelings and I do want to point out how I am not aiming this at fellow professional golfers who may be currently playing on mini-tours. This is aimed at the people who stopped playing golf or any other sport that requires a lengthy commitment at 16 years old and suddenly wake up at 23 actually believing in not an impossibility, but an enormous improbability.
Doing a Nick Faldo is infinitely tougher in 2013 than it was decades ago. There are too many South Koreans… At least for now.
From That Wise Old Owl, cheers.