Category: Shag Bag (page 2 of 7)

The First Annual SGIC Airing of the Grievances

It’s December 23rd, which is the official (sort of) day of Festivus.  A made-up holiday from a TV show (Seinfeld) about nothing.  Which somehow, seems perfect given where we are.  Don’t understand?  Fine, here’s an explanation:

For me, this started shortly after, when I was working for a large company who calls this area home.  This was my first exposure to the cube farm, and everyone in the group I was in decided to go all-in on decorating their cubes to celebrate Christmas (for the record, I don’t have an issue with Christmas but I do mind how one holiday has become a 10-week orgy of crass consumerism and people get into fistfights over buying things, and get worked into a blind rage over coffee cups, and saying ‘Happy Holidays’ as opposed to ‘Merry Christmas’).  For those of you who don’t know me, know that my default setting is that of a provocateur.  A shit-disturber.  Anyway, with everyone seemingly not doing their actual jobs and spending hours upon hours channeling their Martha Stewart-Sandra Lee “best” selves, I went the other way, and asked about why we weren’t honouring Festivus.  I brought in a Festivus pole, wrote a poem, challenged my coworkers to feats of strength, began airing my grievances, and generally caused a grand-canyon sized divide in the office.  You’re welcome.

In previous years, I’ve done the Santa thing and I may well come back to that in 2019.  But given what 2018 has been, I had a change of heart.  It started yesterday while I innocently sought something to eat and was subject to a mass of humanity surrounding me while I attempted to eat my lunch in relative peace.  Today, I had to go to Costco and I’d politely describe the crowd as being slightly more violent than the crowd at your average punk concert circa 1984.  I was not pleased.  The fuse was lit.

So on that note, allow me to pour myself a vat of bourbon, stand by the shiniest of Festivus poles, and air my grievances.  I’ve got a lot of problems with you people.

Patrick Reed: I’m not even sure where to begin.  You won a Masters and then turned into a full-blown diva.  Sorry those FREE Red Sox tickets weren’t good enough (there’s 200,000 kids in Boston who’d happily take them).  You showed your ass at the Ryder Cup and “allegedly” got into a fight with Dustin Johnson and had a spat with Tiger.  And seemingly everyone else.  Keep blaming everyone else.  I hope your game goes full Ian-Baker Finch, and you show up at Augusta in 2032 as your only event of the year where you post 88-84 and people have to wear helmets to see you play.

PGA Tour: The DC area has supported its tour stop through every possible form of weather known to man.  We’ve had a derecho, a Tuesday finish, flooded out courses, and more.  So thanks for bailing on us for other places.  Karma’s a bitch, as you’ll find out.  Eat it.

The “The US Ryder Cup Team Is Unbeatable” Think Pieces: Stop it.  The US is tough to beat on home soil.  Not so much when they’re playing in Europe.  Accept, breathe, move on.

Backstoppers: Just stop it already.  Mark your god damn ball, and not with a poker chip.  Just use a dime.  Simple.

CA Courses: Join the 21st century.  Every other course allows on-line bookings, but not you guys.  It would be one thing if Hobbits Glen and Fairway Hills were the Pine Valley of the area.  They’re not.  Both tracks are having some real problems right now.  Maybe, and I’m just spit-balling here but maybe don’t make us regular folks have to go through a rigmarole to make a damn tee time.  Every other course in the area literally makes it EASY to do business.  But not you guys.

The USGA: Shinnecock and Oakmont were supposedly incapable of being screwed up, and yet, you manage.  Do they have Paint Chip day for lunch on Tuesdays?  Maybe quit getting a collective boner over protecting par and let the course play.  Sure- grow the rough up but don’t turn the greens into parking lots.  Did you watch the Open Championship?  Notice how green the greens were?   Bingo.  Really looking forward to see how bad you can manage to screw up Pebble Beach next June.

People Who Yell Crap During Tournaments: The second time someone yelled Baba Booey it stopped being funny.  Just stop.  I hope these people get thrown into an active volcano.

Guys Who Dress In Full PGA Tour Pro Scripting:  Were you not loved as a child?  Black pants and a red shirt when it’s 95 degrees and swamp-like doesn’t make you cool.  All-orange?  Who hurt you?

People Who Don’t Fix Divots and Ballmarks:  While you’re standing there picking your nose waiting for your partner to plumb-bob a 4-footer to save triple bogey, fix that mini-crater you made.  Divot repair tools are cheap.  Hell, I’ll GIVE YOU ONE.  You’re in the fairway.  After you take a snowboard-sized divot laying over your 7-iron, replace it.  Divot gone?  Great- take some of that mixture that’s in your cart and pour it in the hole.  Smooth over.  Done.

Guys Who Flirt With the Beverage Cart Girl: She’s old enough to be your daughter.  So stop it.  Plus, there’s probably several groups being held up while you pull this crap.  So don’t.  Seriously.  How would you like it if you were trying to get something done and people were bothering you?  Buy your stuff, tip well, and move along.  If you really had game she’d flirt with you.  And ask for your number.

People Who Don’t Rake Bunkers:  Unless the course treats bunkers as waste areas, rake it.  No, it’s not going to slow you down.  Have one of your playing partners mark your ball while you rake, and they can finish out.  Simple.

Courses Who Don’t Notify About Aeration:  You lying and crooked bastards.  Note that “if” you aerate and post it, I’ll be MORE inclined to play at your course.  Because you’re being honest, and that works for me.  It happens in the spring and again in the late summer/fall.  We understand.  So tell the truth and you shall be rewarded.

The People Trying to Put an End to UMD Golf Course:  God forbid we have a public course inside the beltway AND a home for the men’s and women’s golf teams.  Seriously- get bent all of you.  It’s not some swanky private club.  It’s open to the public.  AND, it’s a fantastic layout that gets pretty regular use by the public.  How many damn football fields does the football team need?  It’s not like they’re any good.  Sure glad they spent all that money adding seats at the stadium that sit empty.

High Handicappers Who Play From the Tips:  Oh, you want to see all of it…great.  Turn what should be a 4-hour round into a 5+hour slog and grind the course to a halt.  Check your ego, and play from a set of tees more in line with your game.  You’ll have fun and you’ll finish sooner.

People Who Use Poker Chips as Ball Markers: You sort of destroy the point of a ballmarker.  Use a dime.  Save the chips for the casino or your poker night.

The Golf Ball Picker-Upper: Take a minute or two to find your ball.  If not, drop and take a penalty stroke.  Stopping to pick up balls…seriously?  Balls aren’t that expensive.  No, I don’t want one.  By all means, sneak back once it’s dark and help yourself.

The Caddyshack Guy:  Look, when I played beer league hockey you’d have Slap Shot guy.  And once or twice a game it’s funny.  Same goes for Caddyshack guy.  When we’re at the turn and you’ve made a dozen references nobody’s laughing.  We’re all hoping a grizzly bear comes along and eats you.

May your Festivus pole be bright and shiny!  And remember- when you tell someone how they’ve disappointed you in the last year, it’s because you care.

 

 

 

 

SGIC’s Rage-Fueled Guide to the Golf Digest Holiday Gift Guide

Screw it. You’re all bad. Eat a bag of dirt.

**Thanks to the far more talented Drew Magary for the inspiration. I know it’s a cheap lift, but I’m giving credit where it’s surely due.  So buy his new book ‘The Hike’ on Amazon or at a bookstore.  

Thanksgiving is now past us, and the annual running of the absurd that is Black Friday is also in our collective rear view mirror, which means it’s 4 weeks until Christmas.  So everyone’s in the holiday spirit.  Except your humble scribe.  Before I became your humble scribe, I worked holidays and for a while dated someone who was a retail store manager, so the December of my younger years wasn’t a joyous occasion (if you’re at a drinking establishment the night of Christmas Eve and see a group of people drinking, odds are they’re retail workers blowing off steam; buy them a round).  I didn’t have time to argue with people about Happy Holidays v. Merry Christmas v. Happy Festivus v. Go Screw Yourself.  Frankly, I don’t care.  People turn into raging assholes this time of year for some reason (I’ll never forget some old woman getting out of her car to attempt to slap me because I dared honk to let her know the light was green and maybe she could drive more and put makeup on less), so my deft move is to give people a wide berth.  Seriously, if you start a fight in a mall over something, rethink your priorities in life.  If someone wishes you well, don’t get offended.

Luckily, Golf Digest has provided us with their annual Holiday Gift Guide, but for some odd reason did not provide the impetus as to how they selected these items.  Let’s go through a few of the more…unique items.

KETEL ONE BOTTLE CANDLE

Price: $35

They say: The creative minds at the ReluminationsDecor on Etsy took this keepsake a step further and made a candle out of Arnie’s bottle. It’s handmade to order and you can select the scent of the soy wax. Soy wax burns longer and cleaner, so expect this one to burn for around 120 hours in total—just long enough to keep you warm during golf’s offseason.

SGIC says: You can buy an actual bottle of Ketel One for $35 and at least drink the vodka.  Oh, but it’s Arnie’s special bottle!  He’s been dead for just over 2 years.  This is his grandchildren using his name to make a few bucks on a candle.  Unless it smells like lemonade and iced tea, why even bother?  If you spend $35 on a damn candle it better keep you warm.  Oh, and vodka is boring.  It’s the Chicken Caesar Salad of alcohol.  You can buy a bottle of Tito’s for $20 and it’s better.

J LINDBERG KIMBALL STRIPED FIELD SENSOR SWEATER

Price: $180 (seriously)

They say: Your favorite golfer may have plenty of midlayers, but likely hasn’t opted for a shade like this half-zip features in its color-blocking pattern. Elastic at the cuffs and hem, along with a mock neck add warmth to the cozy jacket. The moisture wicking fabric is lightweight and perfect for golf in any temperature. There are a few color options for this piece, but the fresh green shade is eye-catching and seasonal.

SGIC says: Remember 6-8 years ago when it seemed like half the European Tour were wearing J Lindberg’s stuff?  They’re still here.  BTW, unless you have the figure of a ballpoint pen, just take a hard pass.  Their stuff has a ‘tailored’ (i.e. tiny) fit.  Damn straight they don’t make sizes for larger people.  I played with a guy who had matching J Lindberg shorts and a shirt a few years ago.  Insufferable nitwit.  He looked good but he couldn’t break 110 on a muni course to save his life.  Of course he had high-end clubs and a staff bag.  Invest in lessons instead.

STITCH DAY PACK TOTE

Price: $198

They say: This 2-in-1 tote bag and backpack is as versatile as it gets and it’s no surprise the brilliant design comes from one of the coolest new golf bag companies, Stitch. This bag has more pockets than you’ll be able to fill and a magnetized passport pocket that’s perfect for travel. Each bag comes with the option of personalization by adding initials to the front on a modern design patch.

SGIC says: $200 for a backpack/tote bag.  When the economy tanks, there’s going to be a few hundred of these things lying around as a testament to how stupid people get in times of marginal prosperity.  Unless you’re being whisked away from your job on Wall Street to to the Hamptons to play a few rounds at daddy’s club and then hang out with Millicent or Muffy, this isn’t for you.

UTHER GOLF TOWEL

Price: $28

They say: Uther makes unique golf towels that will help you cross everyone off your list this holiday season. From florals to flamingos, funny messages to patriotic ones, you’ll definitely pick up a few. They’re also super absorbent, quick drying and clip to your bag with a carabiner. The waffle pattern removes dirt without damaging golf clubs and as a bonus they’re antimicrobial with natural odor reduction to keep things extra clean.

SGIC says:  Add “towel with funny saying” next to neoprene iron covers, ball retrievers, and using poker chips for ball markers to signs nobody wants to play with you.  Even using the “s” word should be a capital offence.  Be sure to tuck it into  your pants for maximum stupidity.

FOOT JOY 1857 DOUBLE MONK STRAP DRESS SHOE

Price: $598

They say: Your favorite golfer may have a pair of FootJoy golf shoes, but they probably don’t have a pair of dress shoes from the new FJ heritage collection. They’re on the pricier side, but that’s because each shoe goes through a 150-step process to ensure high quality craftsmanship. The Double Monk Strap shoe is made with Italian calfskin uppers for an ultra-luxe look and feel. They come in a cognac or navy that will enhance any outfit.

SGIC says: If my shoes don’t undergo a 155 step process I’m not wearing them.  So just to confirm, they’re not golf shoes.  I mean, I do like the monk strap style and they do look pretty good.  But $600 bucks for shoes?  Are you people on dope?  I can buy two pair of Cole-Haan’s or Allan Edmunds for that.

MIZZEN AND MAIN DRESS SHIRT

Price: $135, and your soul

They say: With all the buzz around this shirt, golfers on your list likely haven’t thought of purchasing one of their own. This shirt is really a “see it to believe it” kind of deal—or “play a round of golf in it to believe it.” The fabric really is performance-ready with moisture-wicking capabilities, fou- way stretch and is wrinkle resistant. The shirts from the Phil Mickelson collection have the Lefty’s logo on the left cuff for an added golf-approved touch.

SGIC says: By ‘buzz’, you mean the commercial with Phil Mickelson doing the worm and wearing it at the Players Championship.  In May.  In Florida where the temperature is usually eleventy billion degrees.  Be honest- if you got paired with a twosome wearing these shirts you’re probably entering rehab the next day.  Look, you have to respect the amount of Not Caring About Anything that Phil has.  He’s had his soul ripped out in several US Opens, and the odds are that it’s never going to happen for him.  But when he’s at home in his office day-trading and spread-betting on the Winter X Games, he probably looks good in that dress shirt.  And be honest- when he rolls up to his club and plays Wolf Hammer for $25K per hole, he looks good doing it.

PETER MILLAR SHOOIE PUTTER COVER

Price: $75

They say: Traditional loafer devotees will love this putter cover modeled after the Peter Millar X GFORE Cruiser Golf Loafer. It’s not for everyone, but might just be the perfect unexpected gift for that leather-tassel-loving guy on your list to protect his favorite golf club.

SGIC says: I wear loafers to work, but keep this shit away from my putter.  Unless you’re using this to cover up your Ole Billy Baroo, what are you even doing?  If I saw someone with this thing I’d ask them if they’re having a stroke, or ‘Who hurt you?’  You make the Scotty Cameron collectors seem rational.

LULULEMON MENS ABC PANT

Price: $128

They say: These pants are something that even if they already have a pair, they’ll gladly appreciate another. They can be worn for a casual round of golf, to the office or just around the house. The 5-pocket styling gives an upscale look while the four way stretch fabric feels like loungewear. The Black Plum or Dark Olive colorways are fresh and on-trend, while the classic navy or black will always be a hit.

SGIC says: They’re sweatpants.  And no, you cannot wear these things to the office.  Did Roger Sterling wear god damn sweatpants to the office?  NO!  Did Teddy Roosevelt wear sweatpants?  NO!  I know that everyone is collectively giving up, but just don’t.  Look, I’m all for wearing shorts and I’ve argued that the pro tours should permit shorts.  I draw the line at sweatpants.  And so should you.

LULULEMON WOMENS ALIGN PANT

Price: $98

They say: The moment she realizes she’s unwrapping something from Lululemon, you’ll see (and probably hear) the excitement. These yoga pants are another item that they’ll gladly accept repeats of. The Align “Nulu” fabric is softer than butter and extra lightweight—a noticeable and appreciated difference from most bottoms. She’ll wear them to the range, to yoga and every possible moment she can, they’re that comfortable. Black is always a classic and safe option, but if you’re feeling adventurous, the Dark Sport Red colorway is timely and fun.

SGIC says: She Who Is Really In Charge is a lot of things.  A fan of Lululemon is not one of them.  ‘So, you bought me yoga pants that cost $100’ is not really a great way to start the day unless she’s had at least 2 bottles of wine for breakfast.  Plus, they don’t really cater to most women, and their company seems to be run by evil assholes.  Are they still thin to where people can see the pattern of your underpants when you bend over?

OPPOSUITS

Price: $100 and up

They say: This is a gift you can be certain they don’t have—and at shockingly affordable prices. These hilarious suits are perfect for holiday parties and family photos. Great for the golfer that loves to stand out, just be ready to see them wearing it nonstop.

SGIC says: I can endure 7 minutes every Saturday night from October-early June of Racist Grandpa on Hockey NIght in Canada yelling incoherently at whatever while Ron Maclean looks at him wondering how he got here.  At least Don Cherry goes to Fabricland to get his jackets made.  I can’t endure Trent, Aiden, and Logan hanging out looking like matching dorks.  Cherry has been dressing ridiculously for 3 decades.  Opposuits should be paying him residuals.

Unfamiliar with Don Cherry’s haberdashery?

Image result for don cherry

From the ‘American Psycho, Canadian Edition

It’s like the 1980’s never left.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If you need more of this in your life then check out the Don We Now Our Gay Apparel Blog.

RLX RALPH LAUREN SHERPA FLEECE JACKET

Price: $148

They say: Tartan plaid is the pattern of winter 2018-19. What was once a staple in golf is now back in style and better than ever. While there are plenty of plaid trousers to choose from, opt for this winter-ready jacket from RLX. The fluffy fabric elevates this statement piece to work well on and off the course, while the right chest pocket add utility.

SGIC says: It’s TARTAN TIME.  Why wear ordinary patterns when you can wear TARTAN!  TARTAN EVERYTHING!  Seriously, that fleece is pretty nice (for $150 it better be).

HOOK & ALBERT WEEKENDER BAG

Price: $357

They say: Great for the style-conscious traveler, this minimal duffel transforms into a garment bag that holds up to two suits. It’s also got two shoe pockets and accessory pockets for small items. When not in use, it folds flat for easy storage. This really is the bag they didn’t know they needed but won’t be able to live without. A variety of colors and styles are available, but we like this Limited Edition Twill Gray Fabric because it’s modern looking and will keep clean through the toughest travel.

SGIC says: $350+ for a duffel bag?  Oh, you assholes like the Limited Edition Twill Grey, well I WANT TARTAN PLAID to match my fleece.  And I want TARTAN PLAID sweatpants.

TED BAKER RUNER KNITTED FOLD-OVER RUCKSACK

Price: $289

They say: Everyone needs a cool backpack, no matter how old they are. This Ted Baker fold-over bag has a laptop pocket, top handle and padded shoulder straps that are ultra comfortable. The mixed media design is modern and upscale, perfect for everyday wear.

SGIC says: What, no TARTAN PLAID?  If I’m spending $300 on a bag that doesn’t come in TARTAN PLAID then what am I even doing?  I’m sure that this bag must be great in wet weather.  Bet it soaks up lots of water.  C’mon…TED.

HOOK & GAFF KING TIDE WATCH

Price: $750 (seriously)

They say: This sport watch is nautical-inspired, but perfect for any occasion. For water watchers, you can set the tide to your precise location and it is water-tight up to 660 feet. The navy strap is elegant yet comfortable and the face is scratch-resistant for those less elegant moments.

SGIC says: When Judge Smails invites me to the yacht club, I’m wearing this thing along with my ascot.  Nautical inspired?  You god damn right.  I better get that caddie scholarship.

COMO AUDIO AMICO SPEAKER

Price: $400

They say: Even the most particular audio heads will appreciate this smart speaker. With a real teak wood veneer, this portable speaker is weather resistant for at-home or on-the-course tunes. It’s also got 8 hours of playback time and a rear bass port that doubles as a handle for easy carry.

SGIC says: This thing is gigantic.  Golf Digest are the same assholes who prattle on about how walking is this integral part of the game while hawking this crap.  First off, it’s gigantic so it’ll take some work to get it loaded into your cart.  Second, Judge Smails doesn’t like music on the golf course.  Third, people that own crap like this usually have terrible taste in music.  4 hours of Nickelback and Daughtry should be a felony.

IN CONCLUSION

I say this nearly every year, but if there’s a golfer in your life, buy them a dozen balls of their preferred make/model.  Less than $50, and wrapping them is a cinch.  If you really want to splurge, think long weekend somewhere sunny and warm this winter.

 

 

My Friend Mary Jane

With the country I grew up in set to go full legalization of marijuana and my current state only at the ‘medical’ marijuana state, I thought I’d try to talk like an adult about why I used it, and why I don’t anymore.

Until golf became my full time sport of choice, I played contact/collision sports for years.  Hockey, football and rugby at various stages occupied much of my time.  I still miss playing hockey, and the people I met playing rugby are some of the finest people you could ever hope to meet.

Unfortunately, playing contact/collision sports means that hitting is involved, and hitting (and being hit) does hurt.  Anyone who tells you otherwise is full of shit.  I’ve broken bones, had sprains, tears, pulls, charley horses, concussions, and a raft of other issues.  Most mornings, limbs hurt.

Which brings us back to marijuana.  I’ve used it.  I currently don’t because drug tests are very much on the horizon for me (no bad reasons; I don’t have a criminal record of any kind unless you consider 2 speeding tickets in 24 years criminal activity).  It helped me in two areas:

  1. Pain management.  It helped better than pain medication did without concerns about becoming addicted to it.  Unfortunately, I did become addicted to eating more than I normally do, which explains why I’m fat.  I gained weight (I gained additional weight when I gave up smoking cigarettes; if you’re curious nicotine is a great appetite suppressant, among other things).
  2. Stress/Anxiety.  After a long and stressful day at work, it helped me de-stress and be able to relax enough to sleep without hoovering up Ambien like they’re jelly beans.  I slept better on nights I smoked marijuana than on nights that I didn’t.  FWIW, I never woke up with any hangover effects beyond a desire for a hearty breakfast usually involving waffles or pancakes.

As it relates to golf, it would not surprise me to see someone experiment with edibles (if they didn’t want to smoke) if they needed to relax the night before an important round.  Same for someone who might be in pain but doesn’t want to feel drugged up on painkillers.

On a personal note, I think marijuana should be legal in the US.  Period.  It’s not addictive and there’s not a credible study that shows marijuana is a gateway drug.  I used cocaine twice in college before I found marijuana.  I have zero desire to ever use cocaine again (among other things, the paranoia is a TERRIBLE thing for me).  The only thing keeping me from using marijuana is concerns over a potential positive drug test.  Take that out of the picture and I’d probably be using it periodically (either smoking it or as an edible).

 

 

The LPGA in the DMV Makes Perfect Sense (an open letter to Mike Whan)

Your faithful scribe, hard at work.

Dear Mike,

First off, let me congratulate you on the work you’ve done in your time as LPGA Commissioner.  I’d argue that the LPGA is the most watchable professional golf circuit, and the closest thing to a true global circuit.  Leader-boards often look like a UN meeting is breaking out.  It’s good for the global game, and good for the sport.  The women who make up the Tour are fantastic ambassadors for sport and their game.

As you’re probably aware, your cohort (Jay Monahan) at the PGA Tour announced their 2018-19 wraparound schedule, which puts an end to the DMV (District of Columbia, Maryland, northern Virginia) hosting a professional golf tournament in 2019.  We’re all fully aware you have an event in Williamsburg, but that’s not really an option for most people in the area.  So let’s talk about the market.  When you combine the DC and Baltimore markets, they add up to 3.6 million households (2.5 million in DC and the Virginia suburbs, another 1.1 million from Baltimore and surrounding areas).  If you combine them, that’s the third largest US television market (they kick Chicago out from the 3rd spot), and they have zip to look forward to in terms of professional golf next year.

I should also mention that when you look at the richest counties in the country based on a 2016 survey, the DC area has the top three spots.  Loudoun and Fairfax Counties in Virginia, Howard County in Maryland.  Overall, the area is home to 10 of the top 25 counties based on median household income.  We play golf pretty much year-round unless the courses are closed.  If it’s above freezing and the courses aren’t snow-covered, people will play.  Same for the swamp-like summers.  I mean, what’s a little heat stroke among friends, right?

Did I mention we like sports?  Washington is a true 4-sport city, and not sure you noticed, but the Capitals won the Stanley Cup this past June.  The entire area joined the players on a multi-day bender afterwards.  We also have several colleges including a service academy nearby in Annapolis.  The Nationals just hosted the All Star Game.  The Wizards are a playoff team.  There’s an NFL team that plays in Landover…yeah never mind (the Ravens in Baltimore have won a Super Bowl this decade).  This area has supported the PGA Tour stop in the face of every possible obstacle including every possible weather event short of snow (that’s this area’s Achilles heel and we know it).  People showed up in the aftermath of a derecho that caused massive problems including volunteers.  Admit it- you’re looking up what a derecho is.  We all learned about this 5 years ago.  We didn’t show up the day after because the Tour didn’t let fans on the course because of safety concerns.  If they had, we’d have shown up.

The point is this- this area loves golf and has a proven record of supporting tournaments in spite of barriers put in front of us.  You should be putting the DMV on your tournament calendar.  Okay, you get the area is lucrative.  But let’s talk where to play; and it’s an impressive list.

Are there decent golf courses that can stage an event?  You bet your ass!  In Virginia, RTJ has hosted the Quicken Loans open and hosted multiple President Cup matches.  Laurel Hill is a public course that hosted a USGA Championship.  Creighton Farms should also merit a look if it has the space for the infrastructure a tournament needs.

Maryland has Bulle Rock (it hosted the LPGA Championship for several years in the 2000’s).  It’s still a tough test.  Closer to DC, you also have options.  Congressional’s list of tournaments and championships is as solid as it gets but their members are an odd lot.  Nearby, TPC Potomac just hosted the men in 2017 and 2018.  The golf course at the University of Maryland hosted a Web.com event for a couple years after a 2008 renovation.  Any dates after school lets out would probably work.  Worthington Manor has hosted US Open qualifiers and is a public course.  Baltimore CC (Five Farms) hosted the inaugural LPGA Crown event and remains one of those classic courses that could host an event on short notice.

Or, if you really want to swing for the fences, let’s talk about the District of Columbia.  Specifically, Rock Creek Park.  Sure, it’s not long or tough enough to challenge professionals.  But think about what might happen if you went into partnership (think the USGA with Bethpage Black)?  At the very least, take a look at it.  Admit it- you’re intrigued because you think big.

Weather-wise, July and August aren’t the best (admittedly it gets hot and humid not to mention thunder storms) but then again- your tour hits south Asia which makes DC heat/humidity look refreshing by comparison.  I know September and October are tough because you’re up against football and I know Portland has the Labor Day slot (and admittedly that’s a beautiful city).  But you could make it work.  May, on the other hand…that’s some fine weather.  Starting to warm up but not yet getting killed with the humidity.

The point is this: Putting a tournament in DC right before/after the Williamsburg event is easy travel for your players, and normally May is pretty nice here as I already noted.  So let’s do this.  It’ll be great.

 

 

Let’s Play Two! A Guide to Golf and Minor League Baseball Day Trips in the DMV

Free stock photo of people, field, grass, crowd

After playing 18 (or 36) holes, few things are as enjoyable as a baseball game with a cold beer on a summer evening.

Now that our seemingly endless winter has ended, the DMV has shifted into Spring (i.e. All of the Pollen) mode, which means summer is right around the corner.  While I’d encourage anyone reading this to take a vacation (they’re awesome), for various reasons it’s hard for some people to take a lot of time off.   Sometimes, the best you can do is a day trip with your buddies.

One of the most enjoyable day trips you can do is to play golf by day, and catch a ballgame at night.  While Orioles and Nationals games are enjoyable, there’s a lot to be said for catching a minor league game.  Tickets are cheaper, you’ll sit closer to the action, and it’s generally a more relaxed vibe.  Luckily, there are multiple options for minor league baseball in the area, with outstanding golf options nearby.

Minor League Team: Potomac Nationals (Class A affiliate of the Washington Nationals); Woodbridge, VA

Golf: Options are plentiful.  If you want to play courses in the ‘Best You Can Play’ tier, Potomac Shores is outstanding; you can read my review here.  It’s a real ‘member for a day’ experience.  Laurel Hill is close by and has hosted a USGA championship.  Not bad for a county-run course.  Another option at the higher end is Old Hickory; also in Woodbridge.  If you’re looking for something less costly and not as challenging, Lake Ridge is a 9-hole executive course.  Warning: Traffic on I-95 in Woodbridge is pretty much guaranteed to be awful.  Potomac Mills is there for any retail therapy you need.

Minor League Team: Frederick Keys (Class A affiliate of the Baltimore Orioles); Frederick, MD

Golf: Options are very plentiful.  Musket Ridge is a top 10 you can play course that has one of the tougher opening holes in the area.  Whiskey Creek is also a top 10 ‘Best You Can Play’ that offers the ‘member for a day’ experience (and with the cost).  PB Dye is a Dye design close by that is a bit friendlier to your wallet.  Worthington Manor is another  top 10 ‘Best You Can Play’ course.  Maryland National is several miles west of Frederick and is a challenging and scenic layout.  A few miles south of Frederick has the outstanding Little Bennett.  Not a wallet crusher but a fantastic test that’s almost always in great shape, and the tee shot off the first hole definitely gets your attention.  The course used to be used for hosting the Monday Qualifier for the old Kemper/FBR Open.  Clustered Spires is a bit more wallet-friendly than the other courses listed; I’ve not played it so I’d say check online reviews before you go.

Minor League Team: Bowie Baysox (Class AA affiliate of the Baltimore Orioles): Bowie, MD

Golf: Options exist but not as numerous or close by as Frederick and Woodbridge/Potomac.  Oak Creek (in Upper Marlboro) is a decent upscale semi-private track.  Lake Presidential has been a bit up and down with respect to playing conditions (they addressed some of the issues on their blog last summer, so stay tuned).  The layout is one of the best in the area, but I haven’t played it in a few years and I’ve heard some pointed comments about how they’ve let the course go.  I’ve also heard they are in the process of making improvements, so I’d say look at recent reviews online before you book.  Renditions is similar; if the course is in good shape it’s a great place to play (the ‘Amen Corner’ holes are the pick of the bunch if you’re asking).  The “book” on Renditions is that they book way too many outings that tear the course up, but as with Lake Presidential, allegedly they’re trying to make some improvements.  At the lower end of the price range, Bowie Golf Club is close by and if nothing else a solid value.  The ballpark is right off US-301 which is a huge commuter artery.

Minor League Team: Southern Maryland Blue Crabs (independent); Waldorf, MD

Golf: Potomac Ridge is closed (Atlantic Golf lost Potomac Ridge to development, and South River near Annapolis to going private).  Waldorf isn’t that far from Upper Marlboro, so Oak Creek or Lake Presidential are your best options.

Minor League Team: Aberdeen Ironbirds (Short Season Class A affiliate of the Baltimore Orioles); Aberdeen, MD

Golf: The list has to start with Bulle Rock in nearby Havre De Grace.  Easily the ‘Best You Can Play’ in the state.  My review of Bulle Rock goes into greater detail.  Mountain Branch is nearby and is a solid layout that’s usually in pretty good shape (I last played it in 2014 and it was in great shape then), but hearing a few rumblings so be warned.  A GPS or rangefinder is highly recommended.  Wetlands Golf Course is in Aberdeen and isn’t the wallet-buster than Bulle Rock is.  Well conditioned, decent layout.  The Ironbirds season starts on June 15th.

Minor League Team: Delmarva Shorebirds (Class A affiliate of the Baltimore Orioles); Salisbury, MD (Eastern Shore)

Golf: Your best options for golf are in nearby Ocean City, which is one of the best places to play on the Eastern Seaboard.  I wrote a review about golf in Ocean City that is still accurate.  Note: summer in Ocean City is prime season so if you’re staying, expect to pay accordingly.  The Bay Bridge is a toll bridge (going to the Eastern Shore); Salisbury is a 2 1/2-3 hour drive from either Washington DC or Baltimore (longer on afternoons Thu/Fri, or Saturday mornings).  Warning; Salisbury is home to the Perdue chicken processing plant and the area has a distinct…let’s call it smell.  Ocean City is 30+ minutes from Salisbury.

SONG OF THE DAY:

Departing from golf, the World Cup starts next month in Russia.  It’s become something of a tradition for a band in England to write an official song for the England team (insert joke about futility, losing at penalties, etc.).  New Order were the high water mark of these, which they did for the 1990 World Cup.  Genius work.  They got several players to participate in the video shoot (most notably John Barnes and his ball-juggling and rap skills).  Probably the greatest music video marriage of sports and music.

 

 

 

 

The Oscar For Greatest Golf Infomercial Is Right Here

As you know, I love infomercials.  Golf infomercials are even better.  I thought I had seen true excellence.  While the Golflogix GPS, Perfect Club, and the Brandel Chamblee Quiet Feet ones were all very good, they have been one-upped.  It takes a special kind of spectacle to outperform the Perfect Club, but folks, we have a winner here.

First off, I have to thank Ryan David at RD Golf Media for bringing this to my attention.  You can never predict when you’re going to see greatness.  Tiger Woods at the 1997 Masters.  Auston Matthews scoring 4 goals in his NHL Debut in 2016.  Korean barbecue at 2:00 a.m.  The first time my lips were met with the golden nectar of the gods that is single malt Scotch Whisky.  And now, for your consideration, I give you Royal Lifestyle Golf Clubs.

Let’s watch this together, shall we?

0:02: White pants, un-tucked red shirt.  Okay, I’m in.  The pseudo-British accent at Peter Alliss depth tells you it’s working.  And it’s classy.  It’s the new ‘it’s made in Germany- they make great stuff’ line.

0:08: He goes full Men In Blazers ‘The Tingling’ with a ‘WOW!’  It ‘almost’ makes you want to touch your own nipples. Almost.

I get it. It makes me want to touch my nipples too, Rog.

0:16: Note to the ‘Elvis is Still Alive’ folks.  All is forgiven. Mine eyes have seen the light. If that gold medallion could talk, oh the stories it would tell.

0:24: Powered by the Japanese Pachinko Ball!  It’s a metal ball!  But Japanese!  Magic!  Outta my way, I must have All Of The Pachinko Balls!

0:31: If you’re saying to yourself “umm, the production values are really something” we’re just getting started.  That weave on his head is spectacular, and it’s real muskrat.  Maybe.

0:40: The Royal Lifestyle, and we manufacture The Jumano Line.  Made by Vandalay Industries!

1:04: Hey, this guy’s an engineer by trade!  He should mention that again.  Is it me, or has this guy had a few pops?

1:17: Powered by the Japanese Pachinko Ball!  More oomph!

1:27: It took him 3 years to design this wonderful set of clubs.  Noted.

1:50: I’m an engineer!  Oh, and if someone tells you they’re “probably close to a 0 handicap” you know that you’re on Bullshit Mountain.

2:08: I can think of a few other things that exceed your imagination. But go on…

2:31: “It’s all a bunch of stuff” isn’t the argument we need, but it’s what we deserve and what we’re getting here. If Taylormade or Titleist put out a new line of clubs and said “The Taylormade M10…it’s all a bunch of stuff!” I’d totally buy it.  I’d walk in, take out my wallet and say ‘Gimme that M10 and just take my money’ and I’d have company.

2:34: Brain-warshing?  Oh shit, we’re going full Golf Chemtrails here!

2:44: Reminder…he’s an engineer.  Do you think he likes trains in an unhealthy way?  Just asking.

3:11: Seriously, the production values and the awkward zooming in are straight-up Public Access TV greatness.

3:44: This rationale is some next-level bullshit, but man he’s owning it.

4:00: This guy made engineering calculations, and he went through computers.  Can we stop for a minute and try to imagine the glory and majesty that this guy’s Facebook profile must look like?

4:15: He went in China.  His words.  I can’t even…which apparently, is comprised of boats on rivers.

4:32: Clubheads and shafts are two different things, but really, that’s what they WANT you to believe.

4:40: I was there four…three…hours a day for four hours at a time.  Yup, this totally sounds believable.  Standing there…sitting there…watching.  Would you like to see pictures of his girlfriend from Canada?

5:22: Describing computer testing…my god.  He’s really going all in on this ‘large head is bad’ thing.  So by transitive properties, giving pros tiny heads would…increase distance?  That’s why all the manufacturers keep making smaller heads for the pros.  Got it.

5:50: More Oscar-caliber camera work.  Is the 14-year old that’s doing this on meth or something?  His ‘there’s no spring action’ comments, it must be noted, are pure malarkey.  But keep going.

6:35: I’m not saying he’s making it up as he goes along, I’m saying he’s TOTALLY making it up.  He’s going all in on this. I mean, he’s completely full of it, but he’s committing to the bit.

6:40: What exactly does hitting it with the same integrity mean?

6:57: 110 mph of clubhead speed is approaching tour level.  Just saying.

7:02: Pachinko Ball!!!  More Power! More oomph!

7:08: More Oscar-level editing.  Hot.  Hot I tells ya!

7:38: No sir, YOU are a gift from the gods.  Your entire essence.  Keep going!

7:55: I don’t know who exactly he’s talking to, but can I take ‘Voices in His Head’ for $1000?

8:59: Hermongous?  WTF is that?  Are the drugs wearing off?

9:45: Whack!  Wait…earlier he said you can’t compress the ball, now you can?  I’m confused.

10:04: I’m an engineer and probably a 1, 2 handicap.  Well which one is it?  My handicap card doesn’t say “I’m about a..” it has my index.  An exact number.

10:24: They want to hit it farther and don’t care how straight it is?  Put. The. Crack. Pipe. Down.

10:55: More talk about how a small head is okay.  Compensating much?

11:12: Pachinko Ball!  More oomph!

11:18: Finally, how can I order this flaming pile of crap?  A number AND a website?  Whee I’m hot today!

11:25: The driver is filled with foam and cork?  Sweet holy mother…someone better alert Club Pro Guy!  He’d totally dominate that Mexico mini-Tour!

11:30: Oomph!  Give me all of the oomph!  Someone appears to have dyed their hair a bit darker.

11:38: Two things.  One, he casually drops that he’s making a movie.  Yes, and it’s spectacular.  And two, his other driver is called ‘The Wow Effect’ which is so terrible it’s great.

11:52: TURN AWAY. NOW.  MAKE IT STOP, MAKE IT STOP.

12:07: Our host John Jumano has put on the Al Czervik suit.  Baby blue…oh yeah.  Now it’s a sub-commercial for car dealers.  Yeah, give me that 1988 Yugo but you better include those clubs!  The wedges have dots and grooves and I’m pretty sure the putter is an Ol’ Billy Baroo.  I mean, are you gonna trust some guy like Bob Vokey or the marketing machine that is John Jumano?

12:50: More top-notch editing and fading.

12:55: And now, back to old men who own sports cars.  Foam filled cork.  Just let it wash over you.

14:00: “I love you baby” and yes, he kisses it.  12/10 level creepy.

14:31: A movie he’s producing, it’s called Titanic Johnson.

The man has his own cologne. Don Draper couldn’t have done better.  Stare at it…let it wash over you.

Oh, but wait, there’s more.  Yes, there’s a movie trailer.  If you don’t watch the entire 7 minutes of brilliance you are missing out.

You’re welcome.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The 2017 SGIC Plays Santa Awards You Didn’t Want

Screw cookies and milk. I prefer bourbon. And a dozen ProV1’s.

What a year it’s been in golf.  Until things went completely sideways for me, I was set to make my personal goal of playing in every month of a calendar year (so I’ll have to settle for 10 months).  Sergio won a major, Lexi got robbed of one through a call-in rules violation, Jordan Spieth won a crazy Open Championship, Justin Thomas won a major and the FedEx Cup, the US won the Presidents Cup, Lexi won the CME Race to the Globe, and there’s optimism of another comeback from Tiger Woods (he fired his coach last night so there’s that).

Breakfast of Champions. Accept no substitutes.

If it’s late December and close to Christmas, it’s time for my annual Single Golfer In Cart (SGIC) plays Santa day!  Unfortunately I can’t claim it has the cult following of Drew Magary’s annual Haters Guide To The Williams Sonoma Catalog.

After having given this much thought (a few glasses of whiskey), I’ve put on my Santa costume while Santa is delivering presents to good boys and girls and have decided to grant some wishes throughout the world of golf (a mix of local folks in the DMV and on the pro tours).  These gifts aren’t returnable, by the way.  Suck it up.

For Jason Day you’re getting a copy of “Pace of Play and You” which I’d politely suggest you put to use.  I know you’ve had a rough year but you make early 2000’s Sergio Garcia look fast.

For Golf Channel, Santa is giving you the rights to air “Dead Solid Perfect” which remains the finest golf movie ever made.  Every time I have to see Matt Damon or Shia Leboeuf swing a golf club I fear for my own swing.  And seriously, can you air these films unedited?  You’re a cable channel so you’re not under some FCC bullshit decency coda.  Please.

Lake Presidential Golf Club, you’re getting improved playing conditions.  I know you made some improvements but some trusted spies say it’s still not great.  Earn that top-10 “best you can play’ ranking Golfweek keeps giving you.

Phil Mickelson, Santa has decided to give you that US Open win you keep asking for as long as you agree to go immediately into the booth when you finish playing and agree to be the same candid self you are now.

Golfweek Magazine, I’m getting you a new crop of raters.  Your “best you can play” lists are fairly stagnant.  Also, start showing actual reviews and speak to the methodology.

Worthington Manor Golf Course, Santa is giving you intermediate rough.  Use it.  You’re a great track, but seriously- embrace intermediate rough.

The LPGA was very good this year so you’re getting a few things.   Santa is getting you your own video game.  Also, some of your tournaments are getting new formats (a 6-hole event, a 2-player team event, a Stableford event, and a match play event or two).  Lastly, you’re getting a partnership with Top Golf to help get young people exposed to your products.

Timbers at Troy golf course, Santa is giving you improved drainage.  Your course still drains at the rate an 85-year old man pees.  The new bunkers look great.  Do something about the drainage.  I’ve played there on dry mornings when we haven’t had rain for 2 weeks and it’ll still be squishy fairways.  Or stop overwatering.  Seriously.  Do something about it.

The PGA Tour is getting a map of the DMV from Santa.  You’ll notice Virginia, DC and Maryland.  Look at the population, average income, and ask yourselves why you insist on jobbing this area as often as you do.  I mean, the LPGA doesn’t get closer than Williamsburg or Atlantic City.  The area event has constantly been plagued by a litany of issues, and yet every year people show up in large numbers.

The Guys Who Call In To Report Rules Violations are getting a lump of coal, a beating with a bag of hammers and a kick in the groin.  Stop it.  You’re not a rules official, so just stick to watching.

Brandel Chamblee is getting his own “hot talk” or talking head show from Santa.  First guest is Jason Duffner.  I don’t mind Brandel being a bit of a bomb thrower; it’s better than everyone unafraid to have a controversial opinion.

The USGA and the R&A are both getting pocket dictionaries from Santa.  If you turn to the page I’ve flagged, please read the definition for the word Bifurcation.  Study it.  Memorize it.  Live it.  Roll back the ball for the US Open and Open Championship.  The women don’t need this, nor do 99% of golfers.  And while you’re doing that, we’re getting rid of the OB rule for us mortals.  Play it as a lateral hazard.  No more walking back and hitting 3 from the tee.

Last, and certainly not least, Santa is giving local courses a short winter, a good growing season, and a 2018 playing season that runs into December.  And for all of the marshals, teaching professionals, superintendents and their staffs, Santa wishes all of you a very Merry Christmas (or the holiday of your choosing) and a prosperous 2018.

SONG OF THE DAY

The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame continues to ignore some highly influential bands and everything that came out of the 80’s New Wave era.  Duran Duran, The Cure, The Smiths, New Order, and Depeche Mode hold up incredibly well.  Three decades later you still have kids ‘discovering’ this music.  At some point they’re going to run out of mediocre old white dude bands and start to induct the New Wave era bands.  Now would be an ideal time.

Good Things Come In Threes (or more)

Torrey Pines (South) 3rd hole.  Nothing is needed here except you.

Torrey Pines (South) 3rd hole. Nothing is needed here except you.

Despite the fact that the 2017 season has all but ended here in the DMV, your faithful scribe is still chugging along.  This blog came from inspiration from two of the people I follow on Twitter who deserve a generous concession; Mike at 36 a day and Beltway Golfer; two fine folks whose work is always worth a read (and if the Beltway Golfer (BG) is reading this and needs a partner to play at Congressional my DM’s are open, and I’m only begging a little bit).

It was Mike who posed the question about best 3-hole stretches for courses in Canada (I’ve not played outside Ontario so as much as I’d like to write 5,000 words about Cabot and Highlands Links I can’t do so with any level of knowledge) that got me thinking, and BG for pointing out (correctly) that Arthur Hills has done some fantastic projects in the area.  I’ll admit I’m not a subject matter expert on golf architecture, although if asked I’d lean in favor of people who don’t try to fit courses in areas they don’t work and letting the land dictate how the course will look (so I suppose I’m a minimalist).

But Mike’s question got me thinking; what are the toughest (my extrapolation) 3-hole stretches in the area among public courses here in the DMV?  As always, I took some time to ponder this by looking at reviews I’ve written, made a few overtures, and did some research (research is what I call “drink two double scotches”, if you’re curious), and put together a list.  I haven’t played every course in the DMV so take that with a grain of salt, but from courses I’ve played these are the toughest stretches I’ve encountered.

  • Blue Mash (Holes 1-3): As tough of a opening stretch as any course in the area.
  • Bulle Rock (Holes 16-18): A tight par 4, a par 3 over a hazard, and a par 4 with water left the whole way.
  • Fairway Hills (Holes 16-18): A tight and long par 4 1/2, a par 3 over water and a par 5 straight uphill.
  • Rum Pointe (Holes 16-18): Three tough holes with water in play, and a closer with a well-protected green.
  • Lighthouse Sound (Holes 5-7): Two toughies and the signature hole along the bay.
  • Potomac Shores (Holes 7-9): Looks easy on the card.  It’s not.  The 9th alone can wreck a card.
  • PB Dye (Holes 14-16): A not-easy par 3 and two sneaky-brutal par 4’s.
  • UMD Golf Course (Holes 11-13): A long par 3 over a hazard, a tight par 4, and a sneaky-hard par 5 (holes 1-3 are no slouches either).
  • Waverly Woods (holes 12-14): Par 4 with a carry over a ravine to an uphill green, a long par 3 to a well protected green and a long par 4.
  • Worthington Manor (holes 1-3): two forced carries off the tee to well protected greens and a long par 4 with a second shot over a hazard.  No easy start here.

TIGER, TIGER, TIGER

I believe I’m legally required by the Golf Blogger Regulations Handbook (2017 version) to write about Tiger Woods’ latest comeback (this weekend at the not-at-all ironically named Hero Challenge).

How many of these comebacks has he had (looks at old results)?  Haven’t we been down this road before?  Oh, wait, this time is different.  Oh, the same dirge was being uttered last year (remember that 2nd round 65 he fired last year at this event?) before it went off the rails.  And the time before that, and the times before that.  So you’ll excuse me if I don’t turn into a mouth-breathing goober over this.

Except this time, he’s coming out of legal trouble (he plead guilty to reckless driving in late October) and drug rehab, which his enablers and fanboys (of which there are far too many) would very much like to sweep under the rug and pretend it never happened.  Except that it did.  Part of being an adult is making choices.  Choosing to hoover up a bunch of pills and go for a drive at some ungodly hour is a choice (it’s not like he had no way to get home; he could have called any number of his enablers and they’d have driven him home).

Was he taking painkillers last year during this event or at the start of the year?  I’ve no idea, and without proof you’d have to give him the benefit of the doubt (nobody has asked him if he’s taking anything now, which seems a fair and reasonable question).  Or, everyone just kind of puts their head in the sand and pretends everything’s peachy keen jelly bean.

Having said all of that, he’s the greatest talent of generations and has a record of on-course accomplishments that may never be touched (at one point he held all 4 major championships and the Players Championship at the same time).  Winning the US Open and the Open Championship at two of the most well-known courses in the world (Pebble Beach, Old Course) in the dominating fashion he won them in is unlike anything we may ever see again.

I suppose it is possible that this time will somehow be different, but I’m still skeptical.  If he can, it’ll be a great story and would certainly ‘move the needle’ as the marketing people like to say.  But even as he’s playing a practice round, I’m waiting to see how he holds up over multiple tournaments.  Just because it would be a great story doesn’t mean it’s going to happen.  So I’ll hold my powder for now.

SONG OF THE DAY

Something to get you going when you need a pick-me-up.  Ready to go run through that wall now.

Bulle Rock RIP?

After hearing from several people through the grapevine that Bulle Rock golf course, consistently ranked as the #1 public access course in the state, may be on its last legs.  An article cites several issues that Harbor East Management Group (who owns the development) has with taxes and abatement charges (read the article).  Lest we forget, they own the Baltimore Marriott Waterfront hotel in the Harbor East development and pay a grand total of $1.00 in property taxes (according to the article).

Here’s the problem- people work at the golf course, and people spend money to play the golf course.  Not just in green fees, but food and beverage (money that gets redistributed in Harford County), and likely helps with tourism given its lofty ranking.

Its closure would signal a massive shakeup in public-access golf in the region, and more worrisome, could have a domino effect of sorts.

This should be a year to celebrate golf in the region as three professional tournaments are being held in the area; the Senior PGA Championship was held over Memorial Day weekend at Trump National in Sterling, this week sees the Quicken Loans National at TPC Potomac (played it in 2012 and was very impressed), and the seniors return in mid-July to Caves Valley for the Senior Players Championship (if we could just get an LPGA event in the DMV…oh to dream).  Instead, it looks like what is arguably the best ‘course you can play’ in the region may be going away.

IN VIRGINIA…

On the other side of the Potomac River, Landsdowne Resort is being sold to an Asian developer, but according to someone in the know, plans to continue operating the course ‘for now’ which doesn’t exactly sound promising.

OTHER LOCAL GOLF NEWS

Congrats to the fine people at Golfmatch announced that they have entered into a partnership with Troon.  Full disclosure- I use Golfmatch and find it useful.  I played in one of their events and enjoyed myself.  It’s a great way to meet other golfers and share experiences (and as much as I want argue otherwise, the reality is that we all want experiences).  If I didn’t use it I’d still mention it because Troon has one of the more impressive portfolios just from their Americas portfolio.

Long weekend coming up- sure, it’s going to be hot but who cares!  Get out there and tee it up!

The Language of The Game

Remember kids, Aloha Means Hello. And Goodbye.

Remember kids, Aloha Means Hello. And Goodbye.

As part of an occasional series geared towards newer golfers, I humbly present a list of terms you’re likely to encounter on the golf course that may confuse you.  We have a host of ways to describe shots that don’t quite come off the way we planned it.  Some people just throw a club while others will often use various terms of endearment.  Some of these terms are regional in nature, but I find it’s good to have a solid level of understanding.  Others of these are terms I’ve conjured up as a means of not offending people with the usual stream of profanity that I’m frankly quite good at.

Chili Dip: Nothing to do with chili, or dip.  When you are hitting a chip or a pitch shot and stick the club in the ground rather than hitting the ball.

Enter Sandman: When you take more than one shot to get the ball out of a bunker.   Also a famous Metallica song.  You have a hole where it takes you 7 shots to get the ball out of the bunker and you never live it down.

Pinball Wizard: When you manage to hit multiple trees with one shot.  Don’t know what a pinball machine is?  Ask your parents.

El Hozel: Otherwise known as the lateral vomit, la hozela, a hosel rocket, or a word that rhymes with banks that we simply do not say for fear that it will show up.  It’s like a virus.  You go to Tijuana for a fun evening of donkey shows and cheap tequila and you end up with some kind of infection.  El hozel works the same way.  I’ve seen people do everything short of animal sacrifice to get rid of el hozel.

Slice: For a right handed golfer when the ball goes unexpectedly right in the arc/shape of a banana.  For a lefty, the ball goes to the left.  Common miss for most amateurs.  Distant cousin of the power fade.  You can talk to a power fade.  You can’t talk to a banana slice.

Hook: The opposite.  Ball goes to the left for right handed players and to the right for lefties.

Skull: hitting the ball with the leading edge of your iron.  Often results in a ball that doesn’t get airborne and doesn’t go very far.  Used to end up cutting the surface of old balata balls.

Whiff: Making a swing and missing.  Also known as stiff breeze, air shot, 0 and 1, 0 for 1, etc.

Rinsing the Balata: Hitting a ball into a water hazard.  Balls used to be made out of balata.

Teenage Beer Pong: The act of getting on the green in two shots on a par 5 and then three-putting.  Much like teenagers who think it’s going to go great…and then it doesn’t.  Helps if the birdie putt just misses.

Sacrifice fly: A short tee shot that goes very high in the air but not very far.  Often followed by the ‘the runner will score on the sac fly.’  Don’t know what baseball is?  Ask your father.

Swing Oil: Alcohol quickly consumed.  A chugged beer, an airplane bottle of alcohol consumed in one shot.  Not to be confused with actual Swing Oil which is a supplement some golfers take.

La Hozela: El hozel, but for women.  Equally maddening.

Decell: Slowing your swing down on a chip or pitch shot which results in the ball either not making it on the green or just trickling on leaving you with a long and difficult putt.

Hairpiece: The pelt-sized divot that comes from hitting too far behind the ball.  Please replace if at all possible or at the very least fill that crater with some divot mix.  Sometimes called a toupee.

Topper: A topped shot; often a tee shot where you hit the top half of the ball and the ball rolls a few dozen yards.  Sometimes known as Free Toppings, Topper Shutt, Top of the Pops, or Big Top Pee Wee.

Moped: A guy who has a golf swing that looks ugly as sin but ends up scoring fairly well.

Commercial: A putt that ends up in tap-in range is said to be Commercial.  Not to be confused with the ads CBS runs to infinity during their broadcasts (it’s a pity that the golf gets in the way of their never-ending ads).

Donna Shalala: A short shot that goes left.  Named after the former Clinton cabinet member.

Rush Limbaugh: A fat shot that goes hard right.  Named after the conservative talk radio host.

Fat: Hitting behind the ball, causing the ball to not go as far as intended.  The cousin of the chili-dip.

Three Waggle: Taking three strokes to hole out on the green.  Also known as three-putting, going three-Jack City, three hole Monty, or just being bad at putting.

Socialist Roid Rage: A shot that gets hit hard left and long.

One: The thing that you can be guaranteed someone will say if your ball falls off the tee while you’re getting ready to hit your tee shot.  I think it’s required.

Caddyshack: Golf movie of some renown.  Someone is legally required to quote from the movie during your round or someone has to die (I think this is the rule…but I could be wrong).

Mrs. Doubtfire: Professional golfer and Scotsman Colin Montgomerie.  Use Google Images.

All Bag: Term of derision to describe guy that has pro staff bag and matching clubs but couldn’t break 130 to save his life.  The golf equivalent of soccer’s Full Kit Wanker.  Often will wear full Nike stuff with red shirt.  Impossible for him to play in under 5 hours.

Action: Wagering.  Many people will wager during a round of golf because they need ‘action’ to keep things interesting.

Fugly/Fungly: Decent and fun player to play with who has horrible-looking swing.

Sandbagger: See ‘cheater’.  Someone who keeps an artificially high handicap and during competitive events will play much better.  Will often use words like ‘I never putt this well’ or ‘I guess I was due for a decent round’ and the like.  The Brits like the word ‘bandit’ and I prefer cheat.

Man Bun: A generic term to describe something wholly inappropriate.  Think ‘chipping on the putting surface’ or using the word ‘sh***k’ on a golf course.

Evel Kenevel: Famed stuntperson and doer of stupid things.  Used to describe people who think a golf cart makes a great racing car.

Flying Lady: Generic term used to describe lower-compression golf balls some women and older men use.

 

 

 

 

 

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