Occupy golf, the belly putter and Bubba Watson

May 3, 2012 - Ralph Cissne

Those who live in fear of their own thoughts tend to leave approach shots short. It is doubtful the occupy movement will squat on any golf courses this summer or drive a zero-emission replica of Bo Duke’s General Lee down Magnolia Lane to next year’s Masters. The membership would not have it. The irony of these intersecting considerations is that with the game of golf it is advantageous to occupy your self. I meet many authentic people through golf. The more you relax into who you are the more enjoyable life becomes.

Congratulations to Bubba Watson, though. Frank Sinatra would be proud of him being true to his inner Bubba. There’s no apparent pretense in Watson’s approach to the game and ability to create mind-bending shots. The downside of the post-Masters press coverage was the resurgence of the “The Golf Boys” hip-hop video. Those guys busted moves for all the right reasons, but that ditty is unbearable to watch. I understand because I have committed my share of squirrel-certified acts – like at age 12 when I wore a fedora to a neighborhood teen party. I thought it was cool to impersonate Sinatra. I was wrong. I looked like an idiot. Bubba wears the bill of his visor pointed in the right direction so he has that going for him. And he does not use a belly putter.

If the occupy movement staged a “fair share” golf tournament fundraiser would they all use belly putters? Or mandate that all putts inside three feet be given? Perhaps, in tribute to Karl Marx, they wouldn’t keep score? Without competition would there be any viewers or sponsors? Unlikely when you hate capitalism. Some of my closest friends have used belly putters. I don’t fault them for avoiding the forward bend. When you get older stooping can become a painful affair. But Bubba did not use a belly putter to win the Masters. Or a swing coach. He’s old school authentic and to be applauded. During the last couple of rounds I have often thought, “How would Bubba Watson play this shot?” That brings me into the moment where creativity patiently waits and The Dukes of Hazzard theme song rolls merrily through my mind.

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