EppsNet Archive: Golf

Chillin’ With the Chancellor

16 Apr 2016 /
Me and Chancellor Dirks

I was walking west on Durant crossing Telegraph a block south of the UC Berkeley campus (see map below) when I saw a couple of good-looking yellow labs, probably less than a year old, crossing in the other direction.

I was so focused on the dogs that I didn’t notice until I had passed them that they were being walked by none other than the chancellor of the university, Nicholas B. Dirks, and his wife.

Gee, I wish I had gotten a photo with him but rather than run back across the street after him like a nut, I walked north to Bancroft and turned right to parallel the way he was walking on Durant. At the next street, Bowditch, I turned right again toward Durant to see if I could intercept him, which I did.

I’m staying at the Berkeley Lab Guest House, a university facility . . . when I got back to the place, I showed my Dirks photo to the guy at the front desk.

“Recognize this guy?” I asked. “Not me, the other guy.”


“It’s Chancellor Dirks.”

“I’ll have to Google him.”

He reminded me of the guys asking Jack Nicklaus for his security badge at the Masters.

Let’s See Some ID, Jack Nicklaus

6 Apr 2016 /

Six-time Masters champion Jack Nicklaus posted a Facebook video that shows several Augusta National guards not immediately recognizing him and asking for a security badge.

Tomorrow we’ll have a video of Michael Jordan being asked for ID at a Bulls game . . .

Watch from behind the scenes what happened when I arrived to Magnolia Lane and the Masters this afternoon! ?

Posted by Jack Nicklaus on Tuesday, April 5, 2016

R.I.P. Tiger

11 Mar 2016 /

Tiger shot, chopped up, eaten

A tragic end to a once-promising golf career . . .

EppsNet Book Reviews: Mindset by Carol S. Dweck, Ph.D.

22 Dec 2015 /

Carol Dweck’s research is part of a tradition in psychology that shows the power of people’s beliefs. These may be beliefs that we’re aware of or unaware of but they strongly affect what we want and whether we succeed in getting it. This tradition also shows how changing people’s beliefs can have profound effects.

Dweck’s insight into fixed mindset (bad) vs. growth mindset (good) is powerful but there’s really not enough to it to sustain a book-length exposition without a lot of repetition and illustrational anecdotes, the problem with which is 1) they tend to be overly simple tales of triumph and failure with clearly identified causes; and 2) they ignore the inevitability of regression.

For example, two of the people Dweck identifies as exemplars of the growth mindset are Tiger Woods and Alex Rodriguez. Mindset was published in 2006, after which Woods’s career imploded in the wake of extramarital affairs with 100 or so women, and Rodriguez was suspended from baseball for cheating.

Among the companies singled out as possessing a growth mindset is Circuit City, which announced in January 2009 that it was going out of business.

Don’t get me wrong here, I think Dweck’s work is insightful and illuminating, I just don’t think it works well as a book. For a shorter introduction, try, for example, “The Secret to Raising Smart Kids,” recently published in Scientific American.

Rating: 3-stars


6 Mar 2015 /

“Why is that old guy wheeling a golf bag down the sidewalk? . . . Oh wait, that’s an oxygen tank.”

Willing to Try Anything

7 May 2013 /

People Who Died Last Week

8 May 2011 /
Kevin McCarthy and Dana Wynter

It was a busy week for the Grim Reaper . . .

More People I’m Sick Unto Death Of

9 Sep 2010 /
Maya Angelou reciting her poem, "On the P...

Anyone who REALLY likes one or more of the following:

  • The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy
  • Tom Clancy
  • Golf
  • The Big Lebowski
  • Beer (bonus points if you call it “brew”)
  • Las Vegas
  • Boating
  • KISS
  • Skiing
  • Frank Zappa (bonus points if you just say “Zappa”)
  • Their own abs
  • When Harry Met Sally…
  • Mitch Albom
  • Maya Angelou

Twitter: 2010-04-19

19 Apr 2010 /
  • "Sorry to hear about President Kowalski … now watch this drive." http://bit.ly/azPYiM #obama #golf #
  • RT @OnSluts: Monday Affirmation: "I didn't get sick today so that means I don't have to dish out a co-pay." #

I Was Personally Selected by God Himself

10 Dec 2009 /

Please forgive me…but sometimes I get very emotional…when I talk about my son…. My heart…fills with so…much…joy…when I realize…that this young man…is going to be able…to help so many people…. He will transcend this game…and bring to the world…a humanitarianism…which has never been known before. The world will be a better place to live in…by virtue of his existence…and his presence…. I acknowledge only a small part in that…in that I know that I was personally selected by God himself…to nurture this young man…and bring him to the point where he can make his contribution to humanity…. This is my treasure…. Please accept it…and use it wisely…. Thank you.


I’ve learned to trust the subconscious. My instincts have never lied to me.

That’s why I know I can handle all this, no matter how big it gets. I grew up in the media’s eye, but I was taught never to lose sight of where I came from. Athletes aren’t as gentlemanly as they used to be. I don’t like that change. I like the idea of being a role model. It’s an honor. People took the time to help me as a kid, and they impacted my life. I want to do the same for kids.

Yes We Can!

28 Oct 2009 /

KABUL – Roadside bombs — the biggest killer of U.S. soldiers — claimed eight more American lives Tuesday, driving the U.S. death toll to a record level for the third time in four months as President Barack Obama nears a decision on a new strategy for the troubled war.

Obama at the Movies

We know what you’re thinking, but this is not Obama’s fault. Afghanistan is someone else’s mess, so why don’t you grab a mop? . . .

After all, [Obama] has a busy schedule, what with golf games and pitching the International Olympic Committee and date nights and Democratic fund-raisers and health care and the U.N. Security Council and Sunday morning talk shows and saving the planet from global warming and celebrating the dog’s birthday and defending himself against Fox News and all.

Twitter: 2009-10-26

26 Oct 2009 /
  • RT @markknoller Today – Obama ties Pres. Bush in the number of rounds of golf played in office: 24. Took Bush 2 yrs & 10 months. #

Twitter: 2009-09-27

27 Sep 2009 /

Goofus and Gallant

23 Jun 2009 /

President Bush was unreflective and cocky for playing golf amidst serious world events.

President Obama’s “frequent golf outings reflect a cool self-confidence.”

American Pastoral by Philip Roth

14 Nov 2006 /

But in Old Rimrock, New Jersey, in 1995, when the Ivan Ilyches come trooping back to lunch at the clubhouse after their morning round of golf and start to crow, “It doesn’t get any better than this,” they may be a lot closer to the truth than Leo Tolstoy ever was.


The fact remains that getting people right is not what living is all about anyway. It’s getting them wrong that is living, getting them wrong and wrong and wrong and then, on careful reconsideration, getting them wrong again. That’s how we know we’re alive: we’re wrong. Maybe the best thing would be to forget being right or wrong about people and just go along for the ride. But if you can do that — well, lucky you.


He had learned the worst lesson life can teach — that it makes no sense. And when that happens the happiness is never spontaneous again. It is artificial and, even then, bought at the price of an obstinate estrangement from oneself and one’s history.


This is how successful people live. They’re good citizens. They feel lucky. They feel grateful. God is smiling down on them. There are problems, they adjust. And then everything changes and it becomes impossible. Nothing is smiling down on anybody. And who can adjust then?


Here is someone not set up for life’s working out poorly, let alone for the impossible. But who is set up for the impossible that is going to happen? Who is set up for tragedy and the incomprehensibility of suffering? Nobody. The tragedy of the man not set up for tragedy — that is every man’s tragedy.


The students in her class at Montessori school were asked ten questions about their “philosophy,” one a week. The first week the teacher asked, “Why are we here?” Instead of writing as the other kids did — here to do good, here to make the world a better place, etc. — Merry answered with her own question: “Why are apes here?” But the teacher found this an inadequate response and told her to go home and think about the question more seriously — “Expand on this,” the teacher said. So Merry went home and did as she was told and the next day handed in an additional sentence: “Why are kangaroos here?” It was at this point that Merry was first informed by a teacher that she had a “stubborn streak.”


The final question assigned to the class was “What is life?” Merry’s answer was something her father and mother chuckled over together that night. According to Merry, while the other students labored busily away with their phony deep thoughts, she — after an hour of thinking at her desk — wrote a single, unplatitudinous declarative sentence: “Life is just a short period of time in which you are alive.” “You know,” said the Swede, “it’s smarter then it sounds. She’s a kid — how has she figured out that life is short? She is somethin’, our precocious daughter. This girl is going to Harvard.” But once again the teacher didn’t agree, and she wrote beside Merry’s answer, “Is that all?” Yes, the Swede thought now, that is all. Thank God, that is all; even that is unendurable.


“You talk about what I’m dealing with as though anybody could deal with it. But nobody could deal with it. Nobody! Nobody has the weapons for this. You think I’m inept? You think I’m inadequate? If I’m inadequate, where are you going to get people who are adequate . . . if I’m . . . do you understand what I’m saying? What am I supposed to be? What are other people if I am inadequate?”

The Greatest Golf Photo Ever

23 Sep 2006 /

The facial expression on the guy in the back is priceless.

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The Difference Between Golfers and Tennis Players

6 Jun 2006 /

I was watching the French Open on TV this weekend, and I noticed that all the ads were for investment companies. I’ve noticed when watching golf tournaments that all the ads are for erectile dysfunction drugs.

Draw your own conclusions.

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Tsunamis: Another Reason I Just Stay Home

29 Dec 2004 /

From Reuters:

PHUKET, Thailand — William Robins vowed Monday to change his life forever after the professional golfer from California and his new bride, Amanda, narrowly escaped death in the grip of a tsunami.

The newlyweds were honeymooning on Phi Phi island — made famous by the film “The Beach” starring Leonardo DiCaprio — when a giant tsunami wave slammed into it Sunday.

Continue reading Tsunamis: Another Reason I Just Stay Home

The Meaning of Golf

27 Nov 2004 /

But what do I get from existence? If it is full I have only distress, if empty only boredom. How can you offer me so poor a reward for so much labor . . .

— Arthur Schopenhauer

Another weekend approaches, bringing leisure hours that we don’t know what to do with. As the busy work week winds to a close, we have a couple of days in which to ponder the emptiness of our lives.

How dreary! How much more pleasant if we could fill up the time with other activities.

Hence: Golf!

Intoxication is another option. Or both at the same time!

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Never Trust a Golfer

2 Feb 2003 /

A 68-year-old South Carolina man was arrested in the 1957 slaying of two Southern California police officers who were shot after they stopped a car for running a red light.

According to the Associated Press:

Gerald Fiten Mason was a solid member of his South Carolina community, a golfer who lived quietly with his wife of 40 years.

I’ve always distrusted a man who plays golf . . .

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