May 29, 2015
Grandpa Frank liked to play golf early in the morning, before the hot Texas sun and humidity made the course unbearable.
First up on the first tee was my favorite shot of the day. People were lined up waiting for their turn to play and everyone was watching.
Having an audience would make most people nervous, but to a cocky 16-year-old with a long drive, I loved the attention.
I always let grandpa go first. “Age before beauty,” I told him. But the added benefit of his short, 150 yard drive made my 250+ yard drive look even longer.
“My ball dropped a care package off to yours on its way over,” I would say.
“You drive for show and putt for dough,” he always replied.
It was our ritual. And his 3 shots to reach the green and 1 putt often beat my 2 shots to the green and 3 putts.
Putting for dough is where grandpa excelled. He loved to bet, and we bet on nearly everything…except longest drive. He never bet on something if he thought he’d lose.
But he loved to torture me on the green with a last second “I’ll bet you a dollar you miss that putt.”
Sometimes the pressure got to me and I’d miss, but I never saw grandpa so proud as when I’d make a long putt and happily take his dollar.
Grandpa passed away several years ago and I miss him terribly, but his words of golf wisdom live on:
- It’s not how you drive; it’s how you arrive.
- It’s not how well you play; it’s how well you bet.
- Winners laugh and tell jokes. Losers say shut-up and hit the ball.
Translated to life wisdom, grandpa’s quotes mean:
- Don’t take a risk if you think you’ll lose.
- You have to be able to handle the pressure if you want to win.
- Sometimes, a little added pressure will help you win.
- You can be the worst player and still win if you make the right bets.
- You can put on a big show and soak up all the attention, but it’s often the little things you do when no one is watching that make the biggest difference.
Grandpa was a wise man and he taught me a lot of valuable lessons that can be applied to life and business.
So next time you’re on the tee or the green, in front of an audience or talking to a single client, remember what grandpa would say:
You drive for show and putt for dough.
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