Thoughts on King of the Lake

I tend to do a write-up every year around this time, all jazzed for King of the Lake. This pseudo-annual event has gone through so many permutations and each year someone seems to have a problem with the newest incarnation. I’m always psyched because it’s just such a wonderful event.

This year, I’m not so pumped. Why? Well, it really has nothing to do with the event itself. It’s only three rounds at three courses, which has little to do with why I’m not stoked. It will still feature 66 holes of golf. It will not feature Sierra College (bit of a downer) or Truckee (major plus), instead favoring traditional courses Tahoe Vista, Zephyr, and Bijou.

But I’m having trouble getting excited for this one. As you know, I’m in the midst of a divorce, and as much as I think it won’t affect my game, my relationship issues have clearly impacted my scores all year. I’ve played 12 PDGA rounds this year and I’ve only beaten my modest 966 rating in 4 of them. My last round was unofficially rated 912, my worst round in almost a year. What’s going wrong?

I like to think it’s not my mental game, though I’m sure that’s a major portion of it. Put simply, my game has reverted to the game of 5 years ago. My up-shots are abysmal once again. Off the tee I’ve been pretty consistent, but my putter has reverted to shaky at best. At the last tournament, I made maybe two putts in the [10 meter] circle the whole weekend but I missed probably more than a dozen inside, including at least 5 within 20’. Just totally unacceptable.

Poor sleep patterns probably account for much of this. I haven’t slept well, understandably, in quite some time. I don’t foresee that happening this weekend either, but hey, I’ve been wrong before. There are plenty of statistics on my side. From memory I feel like I play all three of these courses pretty well (I even shot 1000-rated rounds at all three of them in the last two years). I’m the 6th-highest rated Masters player in a field of 18. I’ve been driving further this year than I have in the past few. My back has felt, well, playable this year.

But those were the case for the other tournaments I played this year, and I’ve been mediocrely bad this at every event.

So I’m going to go and try to have fun. Not worry about score, not worry about money, not worry about that first 20’ putt I miss. I want to enjoy myself. If I don’t (as I haven’t much of this year), I might just hang up my discs for the rest of the year and concentrate on getting my life righted and planning a 40th birthday party. Perhaps the expectations I set on myself in my first year of Masters have been more of a hindrance than a motivator.

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