It’s quite possible you have a latent talent buried inside you, yearning for discovery. It’s an undiscovered passion; a calling even. And given the right circumstances, this talent may well bloom.

Think of it how you will – maybe it’s like seed waiting to break the surface, a spark ready to rise from a fire, or bacteria all fired up to escape from a petri dish. You have the power within to change things; there just has to be a way to get it out.

It may also embarrass the hell out of you and give you lots of explaining to do, but it might also change the world.

You need …. an enabler.

I first heard the word at a family intervention when I’d been accused of being a bit of d—head most of the time. Pete, my total d—head mate with the pierced ear (and whose mother we nicked smokes off) was my ‘enabler,’ and they thought it was best that I stopped spending time with him. If they could remove the enabler, I might become a better bloke…

Was it a true intervention? No. Was it my parents telling me to grow up and stop hanging around with d—heads? Yes. Was I aged 11? No. I was 12. But still … I had a new word and I’ve worried about it ever since because of the negative connotations attached. Now, in 2016 – the year of positivity – I see it as a good word.

We all need an enabler, someone who can help us search within ourselves to find and unleash the passion. For some folks, all it’ll take is a gentle scratch on the surface and the love will come pouring out. For others, a gentle squeeze. More stubborn people might require a lancing, and for the truly challenged, it’s time, nurturing and a good kick up the khyber.

Andrew Daddo

Rob is my enabler.

With his brother Greg, he runs the Warringah Golf Club on Sydney’s northern beaches. For all intents and purposes, Rob looks like your normal club pro. He’s got a lovely manner, he’s kind to his members, welcoming to foot traffic and is brilliant at introducing kids to the game.

But Rob carries a secret. (This is the bit where you imagine one of those inane segments on a current affairs show with some perfectly manicured buffoon banging on the door saying, “We know what you’ve done! We know what you’ve done! Why don’t you come out and talk about it like a man?”)

But it’s not like that. What Rob’s done, either inadvertently or by design, is not laugh when I seek his advice for my tinkering. You see, it’s one thing to Google “tip or butt cut my shaft” and you’ll come up with some pretty interesting responses (believe me). But it’s another thing entirely to ask someone who won’t laugh at you.

Even better, instead of laughing, Rob the enabler offers to help. Instead of questioning why I would want to buy that untested golf clubhead off the internet, Rob suggests a shaft to use that might actually make it work.

And I know for a fact that he knows he’s only getting half the story. Like, he knows I’m going home and gluing my heads on with wood glue – at least I did until one flew off, so now I use the proper glue. He knows I now use double-sided tape for my grips because single sided turned upside down was never going to cut it.   

And Rob the enabler knows for a fact I have done unspeakable things to the faces of golf clubs in the search for innovation and advantage. But not because I’ve told him, because I haven’t – he’s just interested in asking the right questions about what’s going on in the garage at our place.

If I say something about re-grooving, he tells me how they used to do it with drill bits.  “Drill bits?” I ask. “That’s nuts!”

“What do you use?” he asks, fiddling about with ferules or the swing-weight machine like he’s not really listening.

“A mini-grinder! It takes half the time!”

“Nice,” he says. “They didn’t have mini-grinders when I was a tinkerer.”

He gave me a wedge once. Just gave it. Handed it over and said, “Do your best with this.” You should see what I did to it.

You will, actually. Next month. It’s amazing, and it’s already been used and ‘endorsed’ by the Prime Minister of New Zealand. Seriously.

And none of it would be possible without the help of Rob the enabler. Or maybe it would, but having someone to encourage that little bit of innovation out of the cave of uncertainty and into the world is a rare gift – something to be encouraged and celebrated.

Next month, the sport of golf changes forever.