Rub of the Green

By Jim Payne 

In their book, The Mental Art of Putting, Cohn and Winters point out that, while putting, the ball is never airborne. Thus imperfections of the putting surface can affect the roll of the ball. Parent, in his popular book, Zen Golf, indicates golf and life aren’t fair on a day to day basis, but that the good and bad breaks even out over the long run.  Elliott and May, in their historical account of golf, The Illustrated History of Golf, mention that, in the beginning, of golfers were introduced to the phrase, ‘rub of the green’.  The ‘rub of the green’ are the lucky and unlucky happenings to the ball which are not accounted for in the rules, but which must none-the-less be accepted. The key is, must be accepted.

So the next time you strike a putt that should have gone in but because of an imperfection of the green it didn’t , don’t get upset because if you live long enough, a ball that shouldn’t go in will miraculously go in either for you or for someone else. It is the ‘rub of the green’, accept it for what it is.


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