Any Book

Not exactly sure where to put this…and I apologize if anyone thinks “this isn’t golf related.” Several posts containing book references have been percolating in my mind, and prompted this. For example…RR has related how at one phase in his life he read all the books at his public library. Bom has referenced James Joyce. Various other authors and books are mentioned almost daily.

It is said that Moe Norman was an voracious consumer of motivational books and tapes…and used them to help his golf.

Recently, on another thread, LCDV inquired about the book “Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance.” On the surface, one would argue it has nothing to do with golf, but I’ll make a long story short and quote Lag…something like

I recently saw this quote by Robert Morgan in his review of “Dr. Zhivago”, titled “The Wisest Book I Ever Read”…

My thought…I have learned so much from the folks here… and I want to learn more. Each of you has your own “literary canon” as Robert Morgan says…books that hit you squarely, became game changers for you. Here’s a spot to share it …submit a book, or books, or a list that you like. Tell why if you wish. Reading time is limited…so it needs to count for something. I think recommendations here would be a good resource for us all. And importantly, it might help our golf… in a direct, or round about, way.

Marl Twain said it well…

Great idea for a thread! I really liked Robert Morgan’s review of Dr Zhivago, thanks for sharing this eagle.

Besides Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance, my pick would be ‘Mastery’, by George Leonard. Very ABS-que :exclamation:

Good To Great by Jim Collins. Here is a reply to jrich on another thread…

jrich99, you wrote:

LCDV wrote:

In Jim Collins’ book, “Good To Great” he outlines how several companies make the transformation from poor to mediocre, to GREAT. There are some similar ABS and LCDV principles, and Collins even mentions LCDV’s Coach John Wooden…

Some of the companies Collins uses have fallen by the wayside…so maybe there is another book to be written about sustaining greatness. But I think the message is clear…there is a path to making your transformation if you are a company, a team, or probably an individual. I bet you are on it.

So many great non-golf books that are very applicable to golf out there.

in the “How to Shoot 65” I mentioned “The Talent Code” and “Talent is Overrated”. Both these are great, and worth checking out if you haven’t already.

I also find books from other sports to be interesting. For example, “The Science of Hitting” by the great Ted Williams has some ABS-type concepts in it that I will share when i get around to it. I have a bunch of notes on this book as well as some golf books I will try to post later tonight, but for now, I’m off to the bag and then the range! :wink:

The Art of Learning: A Journey in the Pursuit of Excellence

Range Rat gave me a tip to see the movie “Searching for Bobby Fischer” about the 9 year old National Chess Champion, Josh Waitzkin. Though I haven’t seen the movie yet, Rat’s tip fortunately led me to “The Art of Learning: A Journey in the Pursuit of Excellence”, written by Josh after he not only achieved eight National Chess Championships but, thereafter, multiple martial arts National and World Championships. The surface disparity between chess and martial arts championships at the highest levels may disappear, as a vapor trail, when you read his book.

Robert Pirsig, author of “Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance” said: “This is a really superb book, one I wish someone had given to me long ago. The title is accurate - at a profound level, it’s about real learning from hard conflict rather than from disinterested textbooks. It will take a ferocious interruption to make you set this book down.”

Mr. Pirsig was right, the book could not be set down, until my fatigue blurred vision would not clear anymore. But after one nap, I finished it. I must return this book to the county library, but to have the book handy, I will buy a copy soon. Josh Waitzkin’s book is an inspired and inspiring learning resource. I too wish it had been available long ago.

I take too many naps, that’s why I don’t read!! :unamused:

Now that you’ve read the book Teebox, in the movie there was one scene from several really that gets to the heart of not being ball bound. Josh, in the movie, was fixated on the board and the pieces on it. He was so focused on the things in front of him, he was missing the bigger picture: seeing while not seeing.

During that scene his instructor wiped the board clean…no pieces to see at all, only 64 blank squares. Josh had to see, and plan in his mind’s eye what the SEQUENCE would be from that point forward…and darn if he didn’t use that same skill at the end of the movie to trash his opponent.

Cool stuff to me…was that scene depicted in the book? :slight_smile:

It seems to me Josh describes an element of this training for the end game, but in a less cinematic way, on page 12 of the “Innocent Moves” chapter of “The Art of Learning…” and elsewhere the match, and his father describes these in “Searching for Bobby…” Even though I know zip about chess and martial arts, the application of the books’ for golfers and life are there to be gleaned. I’m itching to see the movie too.

If you’re a chess nerd like myself, Josh’s chess tutorials are very good if you buy Chessmaster’s software package…Having said that I’m partial to the Fritz engine…

Good one.Thanks! Great book.

That’s good news eagle.

The Pleasure Trap by D.Lisle,Ph.D. and A. Goldhammer,D.C.

I stumbled onto this book after reading Joel Fuhrman’s Eat to Live and Eat for Health, also good books.This book is about nutrition and the addiction that many of us have to foods that aren’t good for us ( SAD…“Standard American Diet”). Any trip to Walmart will provide adequate evidence that we in America have become poisoned by our food.

While the book won’t help us shoot 65, it may enable us play our best when we are 65, 75, 85, and even 95…or more.

In the September Golf Digest Gary Player says that “The biggest technological advance in the next 50 years won’t be equipment or exercise. It’ll be nutrition.” I recently read where Arnold Palmer had become a vegetarian and was recommending the book
The China Study, a nutrition book Gary Player also recommends.

The Pleasure Trap is a history book of sorts, as it tells how we have changed through the millennia…from hunters/gatherers, to agrarians, and finally to industrialists…and the impact of the agricultural and industrial revolutions on out eating habits. Basically, we now ae able to eat as only kings could eat years ago…and we are suffering the consequences of this.

The authors used Elvis as a tragic example of the poisoning( but we all can think of many other celebrity examples), how we as human animals used to able to rely on pleasure and pain to stay on track, just as other animals still can. You don’t see any fat fish or squirrels. I could not but help to mentally extend this pleasure/ addiction model from food to the modern golf equipment, which offers immediate gratification, but may eventually be poison.

Almost everyone will find this book an eye-opener and motivator. I should had been following mom’s advice…“eat your vegetables.” I reckon it’s never too late to start.

Thanks for the recommendation Eagle, The Pleasure Trap is something I look forward to reading. In fact I probably could have written it., but I’d subtitle it “Food and women…”

Don’t be too concerned about not eating vegetables–with genetic modification, toxic pesticides and ‘dead’ soil, mark my words, the future will show standard produce isn’t as good for us as we think. … anism.html

A bit ironic that at the bottom of the page explaining “Breatharianism” there is advertisement for “The South Beach Diet”
Maybe one for Letterman’s “Top Ten List?”

Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson

Walter Isaacson has written a great book about the life of Steve Jobs. Jobs apparently had no control of the content, and there is plenty of material that will attest to that. For me it was a captivating book from many angles. He tells the life story of Jobs, from an adopted baby raised in middle class California to become the creator of many incredible products and the most valuable company on the planet. It includes the story of how the various products were developed. Woven throughout is Jobs’ relationship with Bill Gates, Jobs’ music preferences, the Zen influence, his values, his failures. It tells of his remarkable ability to focus his talent and energy, and inspire others to build the great things that have been built.

According to the book and central to its theme, Jobs’ loved the space at the intersection of art and technology. He wanted to create simple but beautiful products that we would delight in, and he insisted that to make great products he must control the production “end to end” &“inside out”, marrying the hardware and software…unlike Microsoft, who would take the “open end” road ( make software that could be used on anyone’s hardware). “Crap” he would say of it. For many years, it looked like Microsoft won that game…but in the last decade, it appears Apple has done as Dylan penned …“the loser now will be later to win”.

No, it’s not a golf book, but there is much to learn from Jobs. At one time Apple had a slogan…“Think different.” Many folks on this site can read, relate, and enjoy reviewing what Jobs did and how he did it.

Great stuff, Eagle. I’m now doubly sold on reading it.
Thanks for the synopsis…

Mindset by Carol Dweck

Carol Dweck is a psychologist at Stanford University in California. She has done studies on human behavior, and in this book she simply divides people into 2 groups…those who believe they can change, or have a “growth mindset”, and those who believe they cannot change, or have a “fixed mindset.” Frequently, of course, one may have a mixture of these two, depending on the behavior. For example, an individual may have a fixed mindset when it comes to his algebra skills…“I 'm not good at math”, but have a growth mindset when it comes to an athletic skill. Additionally, mindsets can change throughout life.

This analysis provides an interesting way to view varying abilities, from athletics, to business, to social, and goes a long way to explain things we have all observed…for instance, the goofy clumsy kid who can’t field a ground ball at age 9, but by age 15 is on the All-Star team. Or the kid who struggles a simple phycics problem in the 11th grade, but 13 years later scores the highest in the nation on standardized testing on in service exams in his complex field of scientific endeavor. Conversely, we’ve all seen the kids who seem great at everything, but years later are found not to have fulfilled their potential, having been surpassed by those with far lesser skill. It explains why the “self esteem” craze actually hurts performance and skill development.

Dweck says the important thing is EFFORT, not quitting, not being afraid to keep trying and failing/ looking bad. Reminded me of Churchill…once last in his class at Harrow, …but later a giant. His quote “Never give in, never, never, never, never…”

She provide numerous examples…Bobby Knight( fixed), John Wooden( growth), Michael Jordan( growth), Tiger Woods( growth), John McEnroe(fixed), among others to support her thesis. She’s not always on the mark however, as one example of a growth mindset company, Circuit City, has ended in bankruptcy. In Tiger’s case, it may also explain why he’s willing to keep changing his swing, despite having won so many majors…and it does raise the question in my mind…when is good enough achieved?

I would think that many who read this site would be of the growth mindset category…that is, they believe they can change given the right information and program to bring about the change. This book provides valuable information, and shows how a growth mindset can make a huge difference in many areas of a person’s life.

While the concepts may seem obvious, the “growth” vs “fixed” approach is compelling. Great coaches always said “never quit.” This shows us why the effort can and will result in improvement for those who believe they can improve. If you are a golfer trying to get better, or a coach helping someone else, this is excellent information and inspiration. If you are a parent, do your kid a favor and read it!

Excellent post Eagle!

I might just download that book tonight. That’s my kind of book I enjoy as well.

Thank you

“Mindset” was a great read. Thanks for the recommendation. I’ve read some good golf books lately that I think some here would enjoy:

  1. “The Match” by Mark Frost: Hogan and Nelson vs Venturi and Ward at Cypress Point. Detailed account of the shot-by-shot of one of the most famous unsanctioned matches in golf history. Really opened my eyes to what a player Harvey Ward was.

  2. “Golf’s Greatest Championship” by Julian Graubart: Story of the 1960 US Open at Cherry Hills. Lots of detail and background info on lesser known contestants.

  3. “The Mysterious Montague” by Leigh Montville: Chronicle of the life and golfing exploits of LaVerne Moore, aka John Montague, who Grantland Rice believed to be the best golfer alive at one point. I can’t believe I’d never heard of him. Here’s an article by the author on Montague: … 9montville