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The Game That Done Him Wrong
Roy Blount Jr.
September 08, 1986
A reluctant participant in Chet Atkins' celebrity golf tournament, the author found comfort in country music as catastrophe followed calamity
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September 08, 1986

The Game That Done Him Wrong

A reluctant participant in Chet Atkins' celebrity golf tournament, the author found comfort in country music as catastrophe followed calamity

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Finally I got to where I was feeling golf so deeply that I wrote an entire song. Well, I nearly finished one called I Think I'll Just Sleep in the Car, about a golfer who comes home too late, see, and he gets as far as his driveway...

I'm drunk, the clock is striking four,
And there Lucille stands in the door.
The roll across our threshold there
Is hard to read. I do declare,
I hit my drive just perfect, but
I left myself a hell of a putt.

So I think I'll just sleep in the car,
Until I feel more up to par.
I think I'll just sleep in the car.

But I went all the way with this one, a whole heart-tugging ballad that I call The Long Nineteenth. Let me say, incidentally, that if someone more famous than I am wants to cut a record of it, I will feel that my golf game has been redeemed. It goes kind of like this:

There's a mashie niblick rusting
In a water hazard deep
Because its master flung it there
Before he went to sleep.

And also there's a nine-iron,
A driver and a spoon—
Lying all unplayably
Beneath a slice of moon.

And look: There's sev'ral dozen
Titleists, dusted o'er.
They miss the man by whom they were
So often shanked before.

But do not grieve, equipment.
The man who used to swear
And bury you beneath the sand Is
now pin-high somewhere.

He's gone on to the Big Clubhouse
Where golfers all wind up,
Where everywhere he lands is green,
An arm's length from the cup.

Ah, now he uses angels' tees.
His earthly game's surpassed.
He smiles at golf from up above:
His head is down at last.

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