The bottom line is – if you are looking for a present for someone who likes golf, the will definitely enjoy reading this book.
There are a lot of books written about golf. Instructions books, biographies, golf psychology books, golf joke books and more. There haven’t been too many books written about caddies, mainly because they are the guys (and gals) carrying the bag around for the professional golfer who gets all the limelight. The one exception to this rule is Caddy For Life – the Bruce Edwards Story, which is written by John Feinstein. Bruce Edwards was Tom Watsons caddy for over 30 years and sadly died of ALS in 2004. Having only really started playing golf 3 years ago I didn’t know about Bruce’s plight at the time. I also didn’t know all that much about Tom Watson – he was definitely more from my dad’s generation of golfers. Having got to watch him play at Turnberry however in 2009 in what would have been the greatest sporting victory ever if he hadn’t got a big skip and bounce on the last green, I knew by the way he handled himself he is a class act. Reading about Bruce and Tom’s relationship on the golf course has made me want to read more about Tom Watson in general so if anybody can recommend any good Tom Watson books please do so in the comments…
You can learn a lot from the book and Bruce’s life. The thing that will stick with me is to never give up. Never give up when you are on the golf course, or in life when chasing after your passion. Those of us who are lucky enough to be playing golf do not realize how lucky we are. I’ve been guilty myself of banging my clubs into the ground and feeling like the most self-loathing golfer ever, wondering why I bother to get out and play the game. I need to stop and realize how lucky I am that I get to walk around outside and do the things I enjoy. There are thousands upon thousands of people in the world who would love to swap positions with me, but all I can do when I hit a bad shot is start cursing myself! Since reading this book I’ve found myself to have a different perspective while playing golf. Since having a great round a few weeks ago I’ve been struggling of late, and while playing the midweek stableford competition last week I had blobbed a few holes quite early. Rather than start moaning at myself and wondering what I was doing, I agreed with myself not to give up and keep battling for every point. I walked off the course with 32 points (36 would have been playing to handicap). Quite a few people I met in the clubhouse afterwards were quite surprised how happy I was with my round even though I came in 4 points below what I should have done. OK my score wasn’t great, but I was really proud that I didn’t give up and kept battling until the end.
One of the advantages that pro’s have over us mere amateurs is they have a caddy following them around. Long gone are the days when the caddy just carried around the clubs – they now advise on yardages and club selection, but in my mind most importantly offer words of encouragement every now and again at the right times. Unfortunately I’m not at the level to need a full time caddy quite yet :-), but that doesn’t mean I can’t use the power of my mind to pretend that Bruce Edwards is standing next to me offering me words of advice and telling me to get a grip of myself if I start acting in a grumpy fashion.
This book will make you happy and sad both at the same time. When watching films that have sad parts in I always do my upmost not to cry, mainly because Sophie my girlfriend cries at the first sign of sadness and I take the mickey out of her. But I found myself making sure I read this book while Sophie was asleep as it is a real tear jerker. It certainly makes you consider what you value in life and to make the most of it. I’ve placed this book on my ‘favourites shelf’ which I used to make sure I re-read the books I have gotten the most out of every month.