Grandpa’s greatest game

I couldn’t change me, I couldn’t change the world, I think the only time they will change me is when I’m not here anymore. 

My name is John Meredith. My favourite thing is golf. I like to meet new people and exercise. It’s a good hobby. I get away from home, it’s a place to go and eat my lunch. I think golf is a game that everyone should play, not only is it good for your health you can learn a lot of different things, meet people you usually wouldn’t say boo to on the street.

Everyone cheats. Everyone. Even the Prime Minister cheats. I don’t go and party, have a cup of tea with the opposition. This is about, playing your own game, no one else can play your game for you. Challenge yourself. This is the game of life. One day you’re looking good saying this game is easy, then suddenly you’re back at square one. 

Golf and snooker? Oh, very similar when you’re on the putting green. Compare that. It’s all skill. Seven years I made a living on that game, pool, yeah well at the time that was easier money than hard work. It’s about going for the weakest part of your opponent, that’s how you get to be on top.

You want to know how to make them bugger off? Let them win the first two games out of five. Thrash them on the last three. That’s how you make them bugger off, you take a man’s pocket, you kill him. Simple as that. I’ve met some of the best sharks, but I was able to get on top of that.

I’m also a great dancer, and all the moves I danced were made by me, not anyone else. I made up my own dance moves, my own songs and chords. Not many people can sing my songs. I was applying myself creatively, a young fob, a social mastermind. I never thought about going into crime, I had to stop myself. I had some friends doing stuff like that, for a laugh. I didn’t like it. It was stupid. I grew up on bread and avocado, our butter back home. That’s how you knew you’d made it in Samoa, I wasn’t going to end up like those other guys.

You know your grandma, she was the one that was pushing, even though she was a shy woman. That’s how it started. It was like fishing, but I don’t know if it was her hook or mine. I don’t know who got caught. She had a friend. The friend came over and asked me you know, would I like to take her friend up for a dance? First of all. Then it became a bad habit. She kept turning up. That’s how it started. She was a very strict woman, with strict coconut parents. I didn’t want to get mixed up with coconut people – because I was one!

Your grandmother, she was an aggressive netball player, she used to play on Khyber Pass. She loved to play, that’s why the boys are like that. Crazy. Sons, grandsons, they’re nuts when it comes to sports. The boys turned out just like her.

Some words for young golfers, players, trying to hit a ball out of the woods? Just, learn the game and enjoy it.

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