Golf Plus

Deep Thoughts: 1-on-1 With Larry Nelson

Photo: Getty Images

Larry Nelson during the 69th PGA Championship held at PGA National Golf Club in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida. August 6-9, 1987.

The three-time major champ, 67, on his lack of patience, how seeing the Beatles would be fab and why he’s a fan of Rory.

What actor would play Larry Nelson in a movie about your life?

It would probably be Sean Connery. We’re a little different, but I’ve always loved him as an actor.

Do you have any secret talents?

I can use chopsticks with both hands. That’s pretty good.

What would a book about your life be titled?

Starting Late.

What’s something that you’re not so good at?

I am not so good at patience. I don’t like long lines, I don’t like eating with big groups. I don’t like taking bus rides with a lot of people. Invariably everybody’s either not on time, or it just doesn’t happen the way it’s supposed to.

What’s the strangest thing you’ve seen on a golf course?

Well, it’s also the funniest thing I’ve seen on a golf course. In Tampa one year, my son was caddying for me. We walk up to the green, and there are like five or six people sitting around the green. The marshal says, “Stand, please.” And all five people stood up.

At what point in your life did you realize you could make a living playing golf?

I finished second in Hawaii; made a huge check for me at that time. It pretty much took care of everything for a year. And I thought, Well, maybe I can do this for a living.

If you could see any musical act in history with front–row seats, who would it be?

The Beatles back in their heyday. They had a very short career, basically. But I’d enjoy that show.

Where do you like to go to get away?

Down to my workshop in the basement. I love tinkering with clubs and different things. That’s kind of my getaway thing.

If you weren’t a professional golfer, what would your occupation be?

I was going to school to become a chemical engineer. Either chemical or electrical.

Are there any guys on Tour who really impress you?

I haven’t seen Rory McIlroy play in person, but I’ve been impressed with his game and his attitude. I think he’s a very well-rounded individual. He will do a lot for this game if his desire stays.

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