The rage goes away eventually.
It gives way to a sullen resignation and an awareness that the old men are piling up behind you, because you need to hit the damn thing three times for every one hit by your so-called friends. The others tell you that what you’re seeing–the complete lack of predictability, the inconsistency, the sense of crushing despair, the urge to be really really surly in your dealings with your companions–are to be expected, and that the first year or two of your life as a golfer will be pretty much like this. Resist, therefore, the temptation to lash out in response to the well-meaning critiques of your stance and your swing; also the desire to make a brave martyr’s announcement that you’ll just accept the eight-stroke maximum score and to then retire to the cart. Fight on; keep working your way towards the *&^% green until the old men behind you complain to the ranger. For that matter, resist the cart when possible. If you’re going to spoil a good walk, you might as well at least get the good walk.
This is the game that has the western hemisphere entranced? How do its enthusiasts get through the early stage?
Sometime between now and November, I need to achieve enough proficiency to fake my way through an afternoon of this without crying. Today was the first step. Excellent.