Through self-hypnosis, you can become a better golfer — unless you think you’re a chicken

(Regular readers of this blog — or even readers dealing with irregularity — know Sundays are reserved for flashbacks. And I’m not talking about something that comes as a result of too much tequila the night before. I’m talking about Flashback Sundays, which is when I dust off a post or newspaper column from long ago, back when I was building a readership through the promise of free Sea Monkeys. Today’s flashback is from 2005, when I was asked to return to the scene of a crime where, a year earlier, I had committed the act of golf. I chose this post because now, eight years later, I have been asked to do it once more. The only explanation I have for this is that my publisher has started drinking again…)

Golf is so much more exciting than bowling … OK, not really. Well maybe. Actually, now that I think about it … ZZZzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz
Our universe is full of mysteries:

Easter Island.
The Bermuda Triangle.

And perhaps the biggest mystery:

Why I was chosen to captain our office’s Relay for Life golf team for a second time. Being asked the first time could be attributed to office members not realizing how bad a golfer I really am. Though none of the injuries sustained during last year’s tournament were life threatening, having six golfers (two of whom were playing the hole behind me) knocked unconscious by balls with my initials on them — I thought — would become my golfing swan song.

(Speaking of which, I’d like to take this opportunity to apologize once again for the tragic death of that swan near the putting green. Had I known the difference between a putter and a pitching wedge, things might’ve turned out differently for that majestic creature.)

Because of this, I fully expected a letter from the American Golf Association (and PETA) denying me access to any course that doesn’t include a windmill and tokens for a free hot dog.

Needless to say, when I was asked back for this year’s golf scramble, I naturally assumed that, at some point, hard liquor had become available in the clubhouse.

As it turns out, being the worst golfer in Ocean Dunes Golf Links history actually makes me a hot commodity! That’s right! With my handicap, the only way a team I’m on can lose is if, over the course of 18 holes, I accidentally knock each of my teammates unconscious with my backswing.

Which is why I’m determined to make this year different.


By hypnotizing myself into believing I’m a good golfer.

That’s right. Thanks to golf hypnotherapist Dr. Kenneth Grossman, I will utilize the power of my subconscious to golf in a manner that is, quote:

Relaxed, self-confident and — unless I purchase both CDs — amazingly like that of a chicken.

The program, called Hypnosis for Golf (available at comes with a no-risk guarantee that if I’m not completely satisfied, my money will be refunded “ … within a period of time considered reasonable by many third-world countries.”

Like many of you, I was a little skeptical about the idea of hypnotizing myself because I figured it meant standing in front of a mirror with a shiny object and repeating:

You’re getting very sleepy.
Very sleeeee-peee
Very s-l-e-e-e-e-p—

That was silly, of course.

Dr. Grossman is a man of science, and his method is scientifically proven to induce the trance-like state necessary for self-hypnosis. This is achieved by having the subject go to a quiet room and, for 15 to 20 minutes, watch golf on television. If you happen to be among those who are more resistant to hypnosis, then switch to bowling. However, Dr. Grossman warns that prolonged exposure can send subjects into a catatonic state similar to a coma. If that happens, change to something more stimulating, such as the blue screen on your auxiliary channel.

With two weeks left before the golf scramble, I feel there’s plenty of time for me to become a better golfer.

Or at least a less dangerous one.

I plan to practice Dr. Grossman’s technique each day until I can approach the fairway with complete — and entirely unfounded — confidence. I’d also like to say to my team members that, if for some reason I don’t show up, I’d appreciate it if someone would come over and change the channel.

(Ned is a syndicated columnist with News Media Corporation. You can write to him at, or at Siuslaw News, P.O. Box 10, Florence, Ore. 97439)

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Ned's Blog

I was a journalist, humor columnist, writer and editor at Siuslaw News for 23 years. The next chapter in my own writer’s journey is helping other writers prepare their manuscript for the road ahead. I'm married to the perfect woman, have four great kids, and a tenuous grip on my sanity...

26 thoughts on “Through self-hypnosis, you can become a better golfer — unless you think you’re a chicken”

  1. Lessons?? New Clubs??? Don’t swing so hard???
    Nah–don’t worry–none of that worked for me either.
    Probably why I play ball hockey instead. At least then when you accidentally hit others with the club…errrr…stick it’s not (necessarily) a bad thing.

  2. My dearest NED,
    My newly graduated from HS in entering college as a sports med major. She LOVES sports.
    And speaking of sports,
    YOU of all people need to read my blog this morn. Please. You are mentioned. Your Freshly Pressed …well… me somewhere else….you don’t have to read the whole thing, just skip down toward the end where you see YOUR blog highlighted. Oh yeah. Carry on….

          1. you hypnotized me…you know you did. snap me out of this…im having india by the dozens (NO LIE) thru some url connection .

            we should SO do a fifty shades of fifty states. but right now I have the hiccups …indigestion…sumptum…

            Wait…I have to remember karma….karma…karma…what I say, comes back….
            GOSH DANG IT…..this is wretched….

  3. I love golf . . .strictly as a spectator sport. I’ve taken lessons twice. When we were instructed to take out our lob wedges, I nearly had a meltdown trying not to let on that I couldn’t distinguish which club was labeled “L” for lob wedge and which was “7” for 7 iron.

    Actually, now my heart’s racing at the memory. Thanks for the flashback.

  4. I’m a chicken, Marge! Recognize that high class art reference?

    As a master of science in the field of psychology, I’d like to suggest an alternative to Dr. Grossman’s golf and bowling suggestions: fishing. If golf doesn’t work for you, and then bowling doesn’t work for you, just switch over to fishing, you’ll be zonked in no time!

    1. Haha! Given your expertise and obvious knowledge of high class art, and taking into consideration your definitive grasp of the intricacies of psychology, I will definitely… take your… advice anddddd..zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

No one is watching, I swear...

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