The Slippery Slope
By windowsurfer on 10/13/10
We asked for readers to send in blog posts- and Mitch Toews didn't disappoint. These articles continue to keep coming in and I want to encourage you guys to keep writing! The feedback and new perspectives are fantastic. This one took me a second to realize the "tone" but once I did, it started cracking me up! Great stuff.

Golfing in a variety of places and with partners chosen by fate and the Pro Shop has given me an interesting perspective on the Rules of Golf. Add to that my experiences in the usual mix of tournaments, client golf outings, mancations, men's leagues, Pro-ams and every day club membership and I have witnessed (created; full disclosure) lots of interpretations. Here in standard blog format is a front nine's worth of examples:

1.1 "We're not on the Tour and besides the group behind us is pushing . . ."

This is the classic. You are playing a long, narrow Par 5 with bush along both sides. In the interest of not having the round stretch out into the wife's afternoon plans (you want to wreck those on your own by taking a nap) you agree that this hole and those following will be played like lateral hazards. Drop with a penalty stroke at the point of entry. Giddy-up. I like this one, especially when we are behind these guys.

1.2 "We're not on the Tour and there is no one behind us on the first tee . . . "

There are golfers of every description on this men's weekend out and you have liberalized the rules to make the hi-HC guys feel OK about dropping their cash. So a Mulligan on the first tee is allowed. You've installed some teeth though - if you take it, you are stuck with it. No choosing. But, half the guys choose. Another group takes two mullys off the tee. A few guys take another mulligan in the fairway. One guy decides: "I wasn't warmed up. I'll just take a bogey."

1.3 "The creeping Scramble ball location phenomenon"

OK, you are in a scramble with great prizes and your team is playing pretty good. You are six under after eight. You need to pick it up. So you are stuck with (hung-over) Shane's tee shot, just behind a tree. Shane sticks a tee in the ground beside his ball and takes his shot, which puts him on the fringe of the large green. Next comes Joey, who places his ball about three inches outboard of Shane's divot and gives him a line to the center of the green. Third up is steady Eddy, who migrates another 2-3" over to the good side of the tree and puts his ball within 10'. You come up with an open line to the flag and stick it for a 3' birdie putt. This game is easy.

1.4 "The Instructor Bandit"

You meet up with a guy after three holes and decide to play together. After a few holes, you see his deal -- bumping the ball around, practice putts ("We'll just have to wait on the next tee anyway!") and other garden-variety infractions. You want to count this round in your handicap and so you resist the weak urge to play along. A few holes later, he says, "Hey, let's make it interesting. How about $1 a hole?" You know you have a better game and figure - without thinking about it too hard - that Mr. Golf here is gonna take it easy on the stickhandling once you have a bet on. You shoulda thunk twice. So he proceeds to cheat you into a $5 deficit and then crown it with a math deficiency when counting up the final score, just to add insult to injury. Then as you shake hands, sigh and turn to walk to the clubhouse, he offers to spend a few minutes on the range with you to help with that hook . . . here is where the police record later showed you lost the higher moral ground.

1.5 "I ain't countin' that."

No explanation needed, except maybe the following key words: "it's gotta be here", fall, middle of fairway, frickin leaves, down two with three to play . . .

1.6 "What do you mean that counts? You GAVE it to me."

Yes they are out there. Golfers who actually believe - or have the brass to pretend to believe - that a "gimme" means no stroke. It vanished. May God have pity on their souls.

1.7 "Virtue and the course marshall"

He is twenty strokes back, he has sweat through his new golf slacks (which he refers to as his new golf slacks), he doggedly refuses to take any gimmes and steadfastly re-tees his ball for the second and sometimes the third time after OB shots. "C'mon guys, you were beginners once too and I really want to know what my true score is." Sounds good, except the guy with all the tattoos in the following group is about to have a sh*t hemorrhage and you have tickets to the afternoon game at the ball park. Next week. It comes down to the delicate, "Gerry, we gotta have you pick up after 8. OK, dude?"

1.8 "Golfing with Jesus"

"Oh, I think my ball moved. No, I'm sure. It moved. Yep. Darn! Gonna hafta call myself on that one. (Etc.)" There's no bet on, he's a 26 HC, he's making lame jokes to the bar cart girl, who is your niece. No one cares if he can shoot the friggin rules of golf out of his rectal cavity, collated and stapled. It's like this blog - no one cares.

1.9 "Equitable Stroke"

"Wuddya have, Mike?"
"Gimme a six."
"Whoa. So we split? Thought you had a seven, buddy?"
"Yah, I HIT it seven times, but my handicap is 12 so it doesn't LET me have a three-over. Gimme a six."

This was written by Mitch Toews, a reader/follower/fellow oober and the opinions are 100% his and do not reflect those of oobgolf in anyway. Enjoy! I'm sure he's ready for your feedback.

photo source

[ comments ]
birdieXris says:
hahah nice.
dottomm says:
oh Man! the last one gets me every time.
Kurt the Knife says:
"the police record later showed you lost the higher moral ground. "

bkuehn1952 says:
I can't wait to see how the back nine goes!!
TravisMiller says:
1.9 is the thorn in my side. I have pretty much written off playing with a couple of guys over this one.
Banker85 says:
thought in a scramble you get a clubs length so whats wrong with that one?

you guys hit the jackpot accepting readers blogs! awesome idea!
Bryan K says:
I'm with you on number nine. I hate arguing with people over equitable stroke control.
Kickntrue says:
@banker85- Thanks! Still waiting for yours. Based on the man-crush most of the audience has with your comments, it should be pretty entertaining!
cjgiant says:
We sometimes end up getting 2-for-1 on our purchased mulligans in a scramble.

Admittedly, we have taken "provisional mulligans" also - if Joe's ball is okay (and we can't tell), we wouldn't hit this...
stedar says:
1.6 :-) When at the end of a round recently, adding up the final score (as you do) and find that my playing partner counted 9 less strokes for his round that I calculated. Thinking my maths must be really bad, I added it again and again, but could not find where I miss counted. Then comparing scores, he had one less shot for each of the "gimme putts" No wonder he broke 100 for the first time. He was a little disappointed when he realized the error. Good call by him though - he doesn't want gimmes anymore.
dtak84 says:
O, is that what was meant by 1.6? Wow. There REALLY are people out there that think that? That is shocking to me, and I never give people credit.
jeremyheslop says:
So are scramble mulligans one try for every person in the group or one player gets to hit one more time?
windowsurfer says:
I'd say the latter. Like when you *have* to use player A's tee shot and he pounds it OB. If there's a Mulligan provision, player A would use it there. (Or else everyone would hit another tee shot, the team's third.)
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