Tuesday, August 28, 2012

We’re Talkin ‘Bout Practice!?

One distinction between my playing golf five years ago and my playing golf these past few months is practice.  Five years ago, I lived at the range.  Since then, not so much.  While I would love to think that new equipment, more regular play, and positive thinking will shave the ten strokes I’ve added to my handicap in the past few years - I realize I need some time at the range.  More importantly, I need time at a chipping and putting green.
I found both last night.  Ten minutes from my house I was able to spend $15 and get a large bucket, time on an empty chipping area, and a bottle of water.  A few hours later, I was back on track – I even flushed a final 5 iron into the dark sky. 
I sought the range out because I had the beginnings of a swing thought.  It started while playing last week and was further ingrained from a comment a club fitter gave me.  Not that it would help anyone particularly, but it had to do with staying behind the ball through impact and feeling my hands reach through the hit and down.  I needed to work it out.  Halfway through the bucket it clicked.  Then my irons did to.  It was awesome.  I used to describe the feeling I had as “the secret” because when a new thought starts to work and you get on a roll grooving irons, it can feel like you discovered how to play the game at last – uncovered the elusive secret.  I know it doesn’t last, but the more times I can get a successful thought and work it out through 150 balls or so, the better I have grooved one successful element of a golf swing, right?
Anyway, sorry to bore both of you reading this, but I am getting excited about this great game again and felt like sharing.

Monday, August 27, 2012

White Driver and Big Red Grips

As my obsession with the game takes hold of me again, I am finding my 'need' for equipment is increasing. 

A sick day Friday led me to Golfsmith where I was able to swat range balls at an electronic screen with a bright white R-11S.  The computer seemed to think I hit the thing a touch north of alright.

$300 dollars later, I was talking to the pro shop about re-shafting my Titleist 906F fairway metal and getting new grips on all the irons and wedges.  Now my irons will have some fancy Winn synthetic soft oversized grips and my wedges have even bigger grips with one other change - they are bright red.  

That is right, bright red for the scoring clubs.  Now let’s see if they can remember their job.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Pleasant Distractions

Since my glorious return to my favorite game I have been thinking about my clubs.  I already shared with you that my wife offered to have my Cleveland TA2 irons re-gripped.  While I love those irons, they are getting a little old and are probably designed for the golfer I was and not the golfer I am.
If you have no idea what they are, they are what was referred to in 2004 as a hybrid between ‘game improvement’ and ‘shot making’ irons.  Essentially, I got them because they were the closest a club could be to a blade without actually being a blade at the time.  I was an equipment snob of a particular variety and I loved a thin top line at address and looked down at anyone playing with “shovels” or “bulldozers.”
Well my recent rounds no longer afford me the right to be an equipment snob.  I don’t play as much as I did and my ‘shot making’ clubs now allow me to ‘work the ball’ into trouble all over the place.  So I started to pay attention to my playing partners and other golfers’ bags.
You know what I saw?
Two things:
First - yellow and orange golf balls.  No, thank you. 
Second - white drivers.  Yes please.
I know I started by thinking and writing about my irons.  Well too bad, I was distracted by something shiny.  Besides, I think I can get back to controlling my ball flight eventually.  What I cannot get back to with my circa-2005 Launcher is a pretty white Taylor Made.
I want one.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Been a while...

I had forgotten about this blog.  I really had the bug back when I used to post here.

Well life is funny.  It shows up and derails plans and shift interests.  I have continued to play over the last five years, but never with the same focus.

It dawned on me when my wife offered to have my clubs re-gripped for me as a present a few months ago.  I thought it was a nice idea and would have liked to have had it done, but I never followed up and my Cleveland TA2 irons have the same grips they had last year (and a few years before that). 

Contrast that small non-story to my getting the same clubs re-gripped six years ago.  Back then I had a golf pro friend who took me behind the counter and re-gripped my clubs with me to avoid dropping them off overnight or for the two-three days it took to turn them around.  Not only that, I only agreed to do it after hitting two large buckets and was positively crushed when he told me they needed to sit 24 hours to dry and set.  What was I supposed to do for 24 hours without golf clubs!?

Like I said, life is funny and my interests have changed. 

Then I found out I was going to have a son.  Most soon to be parents know their life is really going to change and that free time will certainly vanish.  I thought that my son will certainly extinguish my already faded commitment to a time consuming game. 

But then, why am I posting on an ancient blog about golf?

To my own surprise, I started sacrificing to play golf again.  I get up at 5 am on weekends to play and get home in time to make my wife breakfast.  I started doing it Saturdays and have recently been able to get out Saturday and Sunday.  I am walking with my friend or getting out as a single and just playing. 

Golf is the greatest game there is and I want to share that with my son someday.  I just needed to go figure it out again for myself.  Now if I can get my handicap from six years ago back...