Book Review: Who Were the Red Ball People?

by Roy M. Barineau, Ph. D. on May 1, 2011

Roybob’s Book on Golf: The Hucks, A Golfer’s Divine Comedy, and a Religious Philosophy of Golf

Book Review:Who Were the Red Ball People?

See Roybob’s Ball Rating System

Wildroot, Dedalus. Who Were the Red Ball People? Hercules, CA: Bora Publishing, 2005.

Suppose that, in the year 2525, archaeologists uncover a round object inscribed with “Titleist.” The ”leist,” however, has marked out with a red marker, leaving only “Tit” clearly readable. Upon discovering other related artifacts, archaeologists conclude that there was a “Red Ball People” who were led by a “Chief Tit.”

After a couple of introductory chapters, Chief Tit or Dedalus Wildroot, takes readers through one round of golf with the Red Ball People, who include Blister, Whiley, Jack, and the Chief.  The Chief is struggling with breaking the score of eighty for the first time in his life, a feat which, thanks to a number of Red Ball People Amendments to the rules of golf, he is able to accomplish.  This one round of golf takes up 252 pages. Talk about boring your friends with what happened to you on the golf course that day!!!  If Chief Tit played with the Hucks and legitimately shot seventy-nine,  according to Hucks’ Man Law, we would have to cut him off after page 139.

A chapter is devoted to each hole, and in addition to hearing about the golf shots of the Red Ball People, readers are treated to diversions in politics, philosophy, physics, history, types of divots, and rules manipulation.  There is a foursome of unrelated “Mr. Kims” following the Red Ball People.  Yes, that is correct.  For giggles, the starter at the course puts together a foursome in which each member, unrelated to any other, has the name of Kim.  So, when he announces the tee time, he says, that the course “would like to welcome the singles, Mr. Kim, Mr. Kim, Mr. Kim, and Mr. Kim.” The story also involves two attractive females who are playing in front of the Red Ball People.

The book is well written and well designed, exhibiting skills of craftsmanship not unlike those of the ancient Greek artisan, Daedalus.  The author tells us, though, that his name, Dedalus Wildroot, obviously a pseudonym, has something to do with a flower.  I noticed only a couple of typographical errors, and the book is clever in conception.

As indicated by my own ball marking method (see my ball rating system above), I could be included among “Red Ball People,” and because of that, I am sorry that I can only award the book two golf balls. The book was somewhat entertaining at times, more so toward the end, but there were not too many laugh-out-loud moments.  Simply put, Who Were the Red Ball People? was not as humorous as I expected and hoped.

Roybob’s Book on Golf: The Hucks, A Golfer’s Divine Comedy, and a Religious Philosophy of Golf

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