In “A Life Well Played,” the recently passed Arnold Palmer shows off his “short game,” serving up a host of anecdotes and observations on his life in golf and business – all in chapters that seldom run longer than several pages. It’s a fast-paced reflection from the man who many consider the gold standard of conduct in his sport, with plenty of life lessons about how to remain humble and gracious while achieving superstardom. Palmer’s love for his roots as the son of a greenskeeper in Latrobe, Pa., shines through in this succinct review of a sporting life so well lived that he received a Congressional Gold Medal in 2012.
Here’s an excerpt from A Life Well Played:
“It’s amazing how you can just be cruising along and then all of a sudden your game disappears. And when the train leaves the tracks, it’s a real struggle to get it back.
“What happens is that you let a stroke go somewhere that you know you shouldn’t have let go. It might be an easy chip or a putt, what have you. That makes you a little bit anxious, which gets you swinging a bit more quickly. You lose your innate tempo. But, worse you start thinking quickly. You start pressing, for distance, mainly, but by and large you start trying to hit shots you have no business trying to make.
“It’s very difficult to reverse your thinking once you go down this road. It’s nearly impossible, in fact. You can’t seem to find that same frame of mind that made you so comfortable just a few holes before.”