Subscription Lists

Chip Shots from the Ruff of Life

    by Tom Kelley

June 17, 2021

What is it that attaches worth to an object? In "Raiders of the Lost Ark," the first of the Indiana Jones movies, Jones is talking with his adversary, Dr. Rene Belloq, who wistfully comments that his watch is worthless unless he buries it in the dirt for a hundred years and then it is valuable. Then it becomes an artifact of the age in which it existed. It lends itself to explaining the people of that age through their inventions. Worth is not necessarily objective, but curiously subjective.

My collection of Ohio State University memorabilia has a dollar value based on the…  ( Click for more )

June 10, 2021

Many famous people have overcome some sort of physical difficulty to excel at what they do. Even some who were infamous became so through overcoming some handicap. Tamerlane, the Tartar who conquered all the land from India to Russia in the fourteenth century, was partially paralyzed. His name actually meant, "Timur the Lame." His feat is all the more remarkable when it is noted that superstition was rampant in the fourteenth century to the point where paralysis was viewed as a curse and those so afflicted were normally put to death.

In more modern times such celebrities as…  ( Click for more )

June 3, 2021

Many of Major League Baseball's teams have moved a time or two. The Los Angeles Dodgers started out in Brooklyn. The San Francisco Giants began in New York. The Minnesota Twins started out in our nation's Capitol as the Washington Senators. The Oakland Athletics began in Philadelphia. Then there are the twice removed. The teams that just kept moving from city to city until they found a climate more conducive to baseball and less conducive to comparisons with other teams in the area.

Among those teams are the Atlanta Braves. The Braves moved to Atlanta from Milwaukee,…  ( Click for more )

During the two weeks leading up to the contesting of the our national golf championship, the U. S. Open, all the talk was about how the cream rises to the top at the Open like no other golf championship. The top ten golfers in the world will be the ones who will shine. Surely the champion will come from this elite group of golfers. Maybe one of the "Big Four" will win. Maybe Tiger Woods, Vijay Singh, Phil Mickelson or Ernie Els will claim victory at the end of play on Sunday. After all, it is the Open.

At the beginning of play on Thursday, Phil Mickelson was heard to remark…  ( Click for more )

May 20, 2021

Had a good laugh the other day. I saw a flyer for a golf tournament. The people who run the tournament evidently thought that they needed something to really grab people's attention. Right there it was in beautiful red ink on the flyer; the attention grabber. One single word that should grab attention. After all, it grabbed mine and I'm currently wrestling with it to get my attention back. The word is, "INVITATIONAL."

In professional golf, an "invitational" tournament is one in which you contact those whom you wish to compete and offer them the invitational to do…  ( Click for more )

May 13, 2021

Wealth has its advantages. Just ask the players of the Professional Golfers Association. The guys whose names are synonymous with the PGA have a distinct advantage over those who are less well known but just as traveled. Money can play an important part in the ability for a tour pro to concentrate on his game and devote himself to playing the best he possibly can. How can money help a golfer concentrate? Let me explain.

The players who are wealthy outside the PGA tour are those who have parlayed their golf abilities into fame in commercial endeavors. Before Tiger Woods ever…  ( Click for more )

May 6, 2021

Came across some really outlandish facts the other day concerning the laws that exist in some corners of the United States. These are actual laws. I wonder how closely the local police watch for these things or whether or not those who see these terrible crimes perpetrated turn people in as vicious criminals. There are several things concerning these laws that I will point out, but, for now, here they are courtesy of the "Bathroonm Reader."

In Tennessee it is illegal to drive a car while you're asleep. What I wonder is, does that mean it is illegal to fall asleep while…  ( Click for more )

Not long ago some of the neighborhood kids stopped by for a visit. The two boys are ones with which I talk quite a bit when I have the opportunity. One boy especially, Nicholas, is my personal project. I hope to get him and his family coming to our church and sharing in our growth. Nicholas is such an inquisitive kid. Everything is interesting to him. He was curious to see our house since his is just two doors down and looks a little like ours.

The downstairs area looked very familiar as did the upstairs area. However, when I showed him the middle bedroom something caught…  ( Click for more )

April 22, 2021

I first started making golf clubs back in 1976. I remember the day when making a wood involved more steps than just "epoxy the metalwood to the shaft." I used to buy the blanks. Blanks were rough wood turnings of either persimmon or laminated hardrock Canadian maple. They were not smoothed down and ready to be finished and were not bored for the shaft to fit. They also needed the areas for the face insert and soleplate to be routed out. The first job was to trim and bore the hosel (neck) for the shaft. The shafts at that time were predominately tapered steel shafts so the hole…  ( Click for more )

April 15, 2021

A week ago, a very dear man passed away in Bellville, Ohio. Lewis K. (Jack) Snavely was a fascinating man. He was one of the more brilliant people I have ever met in my life. But even I didn't know everything about Jack. His family filled in the cracks for me when I met with them This past Tuesday evening to prepare for the funeral the next day. What I was told was mind-blowing for a man who lived in a little place like Bellville.

Jack Snavely was a very clever and industrious man. When his children wanted something to play on in the backyard he built them a motorized…  ( Click for more )

April 8, 2021

First tee jitters. You've just stepped to the first tee. You're stiff. Your last round of golf was not a good one with the driver. You were hitting your tee shots like a radical Republican; everything was far right. But the course was one that allowed you to stray right and not be punished. Now you're on another course. Twenty yards right of the fairway you see them. They stand there silently, challenging you with their presence, warning you that beyond them is the death of your score. They are the white out-of-bounds stakes.

Deeply ingrained in your thoughts…  ( Click for more )

April 1, 2021

In which room of your house do you spend the most time? Now, in which room of your house do you spend the most time actively doing something? The room in which most people spend the most time is the bedroom. However, time spent there is just that; it is time not activity. Bedrooms are for sleeping. Unless you're a restless sleeper chances are you do very little other than dress in your bedroom. However, here is where the differences lie. The room you're most active in is dependent upon your gender and role in your family.

If you are the wife, you probably spend…  ( Click for more )

March 25, 2021

For a guy raised in a small town in south central Ohio, whose earliest recollections of sports were football with the Ohio State Buckeyes and Cleveland Browns, I had two sports shrines. One was, and still is, the Horseshoe; Ohio Stadium at Columbus on the campus of the Ohio State University. The other is no longer standing. Cleveland Municipal Stadium in Cleveland has been torn down to make way for a new shrine; the current Browns Stadium.

I was in the 'Shoe as a high school student. I was at Ohio State with a group from some academic function one spring during my Junior…  ( Click for more )

March 18, 2021

Now that the Star Wars saga is complete, what have we learned? Star Wars was a compilation of stories of lives that are interwoven like threads into a marvelous fabric of a tale. There's the story of the aging Jedi Master, Yoda, whose ability as a Jedi knight in the power of The Force was legendary. There is his protégé, Ben Kenobi, whose desire is to be like his master and train the Jedi in the mastery of The Force. In the backdrop is the struggle of a people for freedom; the Rebel Alliance against The Empire.

But we all thought Star Wars was about Luke Skywalker.…  ( Click for more )

March 11, 2021

Every now and then the odd but true catches my eye. You know, the kind of story that makes you go, "Hmmmm." The poet, Percy Bysshe Shelley was one who could not swim. In fact, most believed him to be afraid of the water. Yet, he mustered his courage one day and, acting on a whim that he would like to swim, he dove into a deep pool of water in which his friends were enjoying themselves. He nearly drowned before one of those friends pulled him to safety.

Reflecting on the event he wrote, "I always find the bottom of the well, and they say truth lies there. In another minute…  ( Click for more )

March 4, 2021

In a couple of months my home church will be celebrating her fiftieth anniversary. I am privileged to have been asked to be a part of that celebration. With that coming celebration my mind has been in a reflective mode. I was very young when I first got a taste of the fellowship of the new Church of Christ in Jeffersonville, Ohio. I was all of five years old when I stood with the others who sang while I held my mom's leg and cried. At five, church can be frightening.

I grew up in that church. Through the years there was one building that came to mean so very much to…  ( Click for more )

February 25, 2021

Every now and then something happens which heightens my appreciation for those who have certain skills. When I think of the many woodworking projects I have done over the years I am reminded by each one of the expertise of those professionals whose abilities allow them to turn woodworking projects into masterpieces. This past weekend I received a fresh dose of appreciation for another group of professionals; the men of the Professional Golfers Association.

Last Friday morning at 11:00 my son John and our friends in the ministry, Brian Gorman and Tim Gould, and I teed off on the…  ( Click for more )

February 18, 2021

Does size matter? I hadn't really thought much about that until yesterday morning. I had left at my usual time to head up to the Lock N Key, a coffee shop in downtown Georgetown. As I came out to the light at the end of Champion Way I got into the right turn lane. I was behind a couple of trucks; an SUV and a pickup that was in front. The pickup truck did not have a turn signal on and was just sitting at the light even though no traffic was approaching. I wondered if he had planned to go straight and had gotten in the wrong lane.

When the light turned green the pickup…  ( Click for more )

February 11, 2021

Ten years ago I was forty-four. My hair was dark. What am I saying? I actually had hair. I was still fairly active, playing softball for the church softball team and even doing some periodic jogging. At times I would walk a golf course and carry my bag. At that time, I remember thinking that being forty-four was getting up there. Now I am ten years closer to "up there" and, my, how things have changed! My dark hair is now gray, what's left of it. The arthritis in my knees has progressed enough that walking a golf course while carrying my bag is definitely out of the question.

Age…  ( Click for more )

February 4, 2021

The old playground. Time to choose up teams for a game of baseball. When I was very young I got used to the distinction of being rejected until the very last. Then, when I got to Johnson Bible College, near Knoxville (TN), I had to get used to it all over again. Two years later, when I had transferred to Kentucky Christian College, in Grayson, it was different. I was twenty years old and there were some guys there who already knew me and had played ball with me before. I got picked a lot more quickly.

Rejection. It's tough to deal with. Yet, everyone has, at one time…  ( Click for more )

January 28, 2021

Storms have always fascinated me. Thursday evening our eldership at the Minorsville Christian Church met to discuss some of the church's needs. During our time in the meeting the skies were angrily erupting with a light show of such immense proportions that we actually received a phone call at the church building to warn us of its ferocity. Indeed, for most of the meeting the sky was illuminated.

Following the meeting all the elders left and I prepared to lock the back door to the fellowship hall where we had met. About that time a bolt of lightning crackled some distance…  ( Click for more )

January 21, 2021

Recently, a friend and I sat down and conversed about death. It wasn't a morbid conversation but a rather light hearted one as we talked about how scary death is to so many and how welcome others view it. Then he shared a nugget of information with me that I didn't know. "Did you know that Henry Ford had a bottle in which he kept Thomas Edison's last breath?" Oddly enough, it's true. Ford and Edison were close friends. When Edison died in 1931 Ford was at his bedside and caught Edison's last breath in a bottle and then capped it. He still had it when…  ( Click for more )

January 14, 2021

Back in 1988 I had some problems seeing. One evening, while sitting in the family room of the Bellville Church of Christ parsonage, I asked my wife what time it was. She told me to look on the VCR. I told her I couldn't see the VCR. Two days later I was at the eye doctor being checked and fitted for glasses. The eye doctor kept trying to fit me with a pair of glasses that I would either have to take off or look over top of in order to see the congregation on Sunday mornings while preaching. He sighed and commented that I would have to have bifocals. "But isn't seeing…  ( Click for more )

January 7, 2021

When George Orwel wrote the novel, 1984, he coined a phrase that has stuck with American parlance. "Big Brother is watching you," has been a standard quip for government over-involvement since Rowel's novel became popular. Businesses today have security cameras in place to watch their stores and business concerns. As one owner put it, "We don't just watch the bad guys we watch our own to make sure they stay good."

Satellite technology has improved by such measures that areas of the earth can be watched from outer space and movements monitored on the other side of the…  ( Click for more )

December 31, 2020

Wouldn't it be nice to be related to someone famous? According to all the family legends and the way back ties, my family in Ireland were direct descendants of King Miletious of the Celts. Of course, they ate the people they conquered and were basically known as being well down the evolutionary ladder. However, my grandfather did tell me, on several occasions, that the famous clown, Emmet Kelly, was a distant relative. When I would ask how distant, Pawpaw would wink and say, "Way out in California, I think."

Several stars are related to each other. Actress Holly Hunter…  ( Click for more )

Got Something to Share? is always looking for new writers. Whether it is a daily devotional or a weekly article, if you desire to encourage others to know Him better, then signup to become a contributor.