• A Man in a Crisis

    (Originally published June 13, 2011)

    I know there is a crisis coming in my game. I could tell when I hit a ball last week at the practice range. I kept making the correct swing, but still it wouldn’t go away. As I shifted my weight to the left side on the follow-through, the toe of the golf shoe on my right foot flipped loose.

    Yes, this is a crisis for a guy who plays Golf Like You’re Poor -- a GLYPer -- and has zero in his budget for equipment. That shoe is going to continue to break down as long as I keep swinging correctly and transferring my weight, so I better find a way to get a new pair.

    So, what do I do in this “crisis.” According to William Faulkner in Absolom, Absolom!, “A man always falls back upon what he knows best in a crisis.” Willy Faulkner adds that certain men follow this action: “the murderer upon murder, the thief thieving, the liar lying.” I think I can do better than that.

    I was fortunate to be sitting in a Sunday School class this month when the facilitator asked how Jesus responded when he was tempted by Satan. OK, I admit that I’m not often moved to go back and read the Bible. I have a difficult time getting away from secular texts; I‘m 200 pages through The Johnstown Flood by David McCullough right now and just finished Walter Isaacson‘s biography of Einstein. Good reads.

    But the class leader that Sunday made such a simple point about scripture that I had to find it for myself. There are a couple of intriguing passages to the tempting of Christ (Matthew 4:1-11 and Luke 4:1-13) that I hadn’t taken seriously until the class leader’s insight.

    Christ’s response to the temptation? He said these words: “It is written.” In other words, he responded to his crisis by falling back upon a written-down basis (scripture, in his case) of what was really good for his life. Christ, I reckon, did this enough -- every day? -- that temptations were hardly tempting anymore, even in a time of crisis.

    Commercialism tempts me when I shop -- at Goodwill. Whenever I wander into Edwin Watts, Golf Galaxy, or the like, I am tempted. But, “it is written,” so I have to go back and know that new clothes don’t fit the written plan for my involvement in golf. This "crisis" challenges me because I have zero listed in the $92-per-month golf budget for equipment (I formulated the idea of being a GLYPer and started this annual budget in March). I meet that budget by sticking with my clubs, by not wearing a glove and by trying to keep my monthly costs so low that I have a “cushion” built up each month by saving on green fees and range balls. I have taken advantage of several specials, and I’m doing well enough right now that the “cushion” in the budget is about $73. Dave Ramsey and other personal-finance types would call this an emergency fund.

    I’ll play in those shoes until my swing can’t bear it any longer. In the meantime, I’m browsing Internet sites (budget golf.com and golfshoediscounts.com, so far) to find a deal.

    Goodwill? I have found golf shoes there before, so there is hope I can do it again and pay $7 for a pair. When you Golf Like You’re Poor, your journey knows no depths.

    You can follow Tim Price on Twitter @golflikeurpoor.


Golf Like You're Poor

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Not only is Tim Price co-author of Texas Sports Trivia, he writes the "Golf Like You're Poor" blog. It's not news from the golf world (he was never good reporting that). It's not golf instruction (he's not qualified to do that). It's a journal that pursues the deep love of the game with the need to stay in a budget and keep perspective with family life.

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