Lessons in the Games of Life

My son’s lament was sincere: “How difficult to teach our children the importance of proper dress as a sign of respect and courtesy when the adults drop the ball with their poor example” He is a fairly relaxed guy so this remark on his return from the golf course with my young grandson who was being introduced to this great game for the first time in his short life caught my attention.

My son saw golf as an enjoyable opportunity to teach his son, not only the sport itself, but some rules for the game of life. Things like good sportsmanship, appropriateness, focus, honesty, integrity,  and consideration for others.

So, after some practice times on the lawn, they dressed casually, but appropriately and comfortably, and donned their lightweight collared golf shirts and khaki shorts (worn in the general acceptable length about two inches above the knees) to hit the greens.  And, they had a great morning…the kind of special time that provides a memorable and positive influence in a young boy’s life.  I term it “hands on” training– the kind of effective instruction that is so important for active boys.

The only negative was on the part of some other players and their poor dress–or lack of it. Granted this was a small course, but still, the silent message from those adults in tanks and shirtless, was, at best, one of ignorance and disregard for others and the occassion. At the worst, their message was one of laziness and disrespect. Revealing sweaty armpits and ignoring the conventional golf codes is a sad commentary on the character of the offender.

My son shook his head with his lament but used the situation as an object lesson. He is teaching his son that what’s right and proper (this includes dress) is not offensive,  but rather involves considerate behavior  towards others and actions that play by the rules.  That’s why it is right and proper–and it comes with its own rewards. They were invited to participate in an upcoming father son event.

When we teach our children the importance of their appearance and how to “dress for the occasion” it instills a sense of responsibility towards others. Because different functions require certain types of dress,  good training in appropriate attire better prepares them to behave responsibly in the future.

For those who are interested I added a couple golf sites with information on golf etiquette under the Game of Life on the link page.


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