Jun 6, 2012


“Golf is a good  walk spoiled.”
-         Mark Twain
Golf is a time-consuming sport. Consider the average round of golf is four hours plus driving time which could be anywhere from 10 minutes to an hour, then add in some refreshments at the end of the round and you are now at the five or six hour mark. If there's a tournament, well then all the schedules are thrown out of the window, as some could take most of or even all of the day. Some people like me try to cheat time a little by teeing off around dawn on a Sunday morning and finishing in a little over three hours, be home by 9 or 10. One of my Golf buddies told me he is home before his wife even wakes up. This is clearly one way to manage it, but it is still is a great deal of time.
Then there is the aspect that golf is not a cheap hobby. A new driver(the longest golf club) with a hefty price tag of Ten to Twenty five thousand rupees, or even more is nothing to shake a stick (or a new putter) at. Walk into any golf store and the average price of new irons can easily approach seventy grand. Now you need to buy golf balls and pay an average of over hundred to two hundred bucks a day to get on the course. We have not even started to talk about lessons, training aids, gloves, a bag to put the clubs in and of course range balls. The only thing I can do for free at the golf course is take a walk. But the most expensive part could well be the club membership fees, which include club membership and the monthly subscription.
          Though its good exercise, if one is looking to burn calories, it is not by a long way commensurate with the time consumed. The same amount of time spent in the Gym or in a more taxing sport like Squash or Basketball would burn four times more in calories.
          But the most important of all is the massive infrastructural requirements for this game, which make it out of reach and elusive for most people.
          Look at a couple of Golf course pictures :

For me, the worst part of playing golf, by far, has always been hitting the ball.

Jun 3, 2012


Golf is a game whose aim is to hit a very small ball into an even smaller hole, with implements singularly ill-designed for the purpose.
-          Winston Churchill

It was not until I was in my late twenties that Golf caught my fancy. It appeared to be one hell of a boring game, tailor-made for the old and lazy…. not at all an appropriate sport for the young, healthy, agile and athletic.
A walk around one of the Golf courses, which happened to be located right beside the grass tennis courts where I was a regular, changed a little bit of that perception. The lush tree lined fairways, manicured greens, water bodies, chirping birds, flora and fauna .……… was a sight that would make most urbanites salivate. Sights and sounds that are seldom to be seen by non Golfers living in concrete jungles called cities.
I finally picked up the game in my mid thirties …… and have wondered ever since, why I did not start earlier.
On the face of it, there could be nothing simpler than hitting a Golf ball. Unlike most other games where one tries to make contact with a moving ball, the golf ball just sits idle on the turf asking to be hit ………. but to the agony and chagrin of most people one can seldom get it right. Yes, not even Tiger Woods can get it right all the time.
Here is why I think golf is such a great game:
  • Golf is unique, in that it has a handicap system that levels the playing field. It is you and your handicap versus the other guy and his handicap. On this basis you can theoretically beat the best player in the world. How’s that?
  • Your progress in the game is measureable and quantifiable (unlike almost any other game) in terms of number of strokes you take to finish a round. Handicap is a measure of a Golfer’s proficiency(lower the better)
  • Unlike other games where you play against opponents, Golf can be played alone and against oneself. In fact the physical part of Golf is played not against opponents but against the golf course and the elements.
  • It is played in the open air on some of the best real estate in the world. There is nothing quite so beautiful as walking the fairways of a well manicured golf course. Can you imagine playing at Augusta or at St. Andrews? An experience of a lifetime I would think. I have not had that experience yet!
  • There are rules - very strict rules - but no umpires or referees and normally you are expected to be your own referee.
  • You seldom meet a not so nice person on the golf course.
  • There is no such thing as a perfect round. It is the most challenging game I have played with a great round one day and an absolute disaster the next. This alone is one of the main reasons why golf is so popular - the continual drive to improve.
  • Life long friends are made in golf.
  • It is quite simply the best game in the world and if you aren't one of us it is time you started living!
  • Most importantly, it’s the ideal game to be taken into retirement. Age is hardly an issue.
 I suppose I could go on and on as to why golf is so popular but I am sure I would just bore you, so here is my suggestion: grab yourself a set of clubs (beg borrow or steal) and get someone to take you out and have a hit around.
The exhilarating feeling you get when you make solid connection with a golf ball while walking around in the fresh air with good friends cannot be described. You simply have to experience it!
My bet is it won't be long before you too are hooked.
However, there is a flip side too. Wait for it in the next post.
To begin on a lighter note here is a video, Happy Golfing :

Jun 1, 2012


“I will quit public office if allegations of corruption against me are proved”
                                                         -    Dr Manmohan Singh(PM)
Oh man! What a huge sacrifice that would be for a man who has one leg in the grave.
Mr Prime Minister, you have the dubious distinction of being the PM under whose watch the largest number of scams were unearthed and some of the biggest ones too.

Apr 9, 2012

Albatross : Louis Oosthuizen Augusta Masters 2012

Louis Oosthuizen holes out for double eagle (albatross) on the Par 5 2nd hole for the first time on that hole and only the fourth time in the history of the tournament. In the blink of an eye, he went from 7 to 10 under par and surpassed Phil Mickelson and Peter Hanson for the lead.

Apr 7, 2012

Russian Bar Acrobatics

A performance on the Russian Bar, recorded for Chinese television at the Circus Festival of Monte Carlo. The final stunt is unbelievable!


Mar 29, 2012


The army chief antagonized his political masters by taking them head on in the age controversy, which left him with egg on his face. Unlike most of his predecessors, he is beyond currying  favours from the Govt for lucrative post retirement avenues.
Was it out of vengeance or spite, that the Chief wrote to the PM exposing glaring deficiencies in India’s defence preparedness. Or was it because it is his duty to do so.  If the latter were true, it is probably a bit late for such an action, now that just a couple of months remain for him to hang his uniform. The former on the other hand might well be the case. The upshot in any event is that, chinks in India’s armour now stand exposed. As they ought to be in a mature domocracy. The downside however, is that these chinks stand exposed to our not so friendly neighbours as well.
Without taking any precipitate action against the army chief as suggested in some quarters or trying to connect the core issue of the nations' defence preparedness as brought out by the chief with his age row, the MOD should make a quick reality check and take necessary corrective measures with total transparency in rejuvenating the defence forces leaving no scope for anyone to play with national secuity and territorial integrity of the nation. At least, till a week  ago the common man had a sense of security that India was safe in the hands of our defence forces. Going by the startling revelations, that faith now stands considerably eroded. There should be no room for politicking and the whole nation should stand as one, to restore the health of India's defence establishment in all its wings, as a national task of urgent priority. Let not there be a repeat of 1962, when the then PM did not pay heed to the advise of service Chiefs due to a misplaced complacency that the Chinese would never attack India.

The safety, honour and welfare of the country comes first, always and every time”

Mar 24, 2012

On the Enigma called Golf

Stand proud you noble swingers of clubs and losers of balls....
A recent study found the average golfer walks about 900 miles a year.
Another study found golfers drink, on average, 22 gallons of alcohol a Year.
That means, on average, golfers get about 41 miles to the gallon!
Kind of makes you proud. Almost feel like a hybrid.
Cheers!!!!!! Read on ….

Had William Wordsworth been a golfer, he would have written something like this about a golf ball !

In My Hand I Hold A Ball, White And Dimpled, Rather Small.
Oh, How Bland It Does Appear, This Harmless Looking Little Sphere.

By Its Size I Could Not Guess, The Awesome Strength It Does Possess.
But Since I Fell Beneath Its Spell, I've Wandered Through The Fires Of Hell.

My Life Has Not Been Quite The Same, Since I Chose To Play This Stupid Game.
It Rules My Mind For Hours On End, A Fortune It Has Made Me Spend.

It Has Made Me Yell, Curse And Cry, I Hate Myself And Want To Die.
It Promises A Thing Called Par, If I Can Hit It Straight And Far.

To Master Such A Tiny Ball, Should Not Be Very Hard At All.
But My Desires The Ball Refuses, And Does Exactly As It Chooses.

It Hooks And Slices, Dribbles And Dies, And Even Disappears Before My Eyes.
Often It Will Have A Whim, To Hit A Tree Or Take A Swim.

With Miles Of Grass On Which To Land, Finds A Tiny Patch Of Sand.
Then Has Me Offering Up My Soul, If Only It Would Find The Hole.

It's Made Me Whimper Like A Pup, And Swear That I Will Give It Up.

Take To Drink To Ease My Sorrow, But The Ball Knows ... I'll Be Back Tomorrow

Courtesy : Rajneesh Sinha(my playing partner)

Feb 28, 2012

Pinki Goes to Hollywood

Remember Pinki from my last post. A touching video of Pnki's trip to Hollywood to collect the Oscar.