List of Wines that have been Reviewed
List of Movies that have been Reviewed
On a scale of 1 to 5. 5 being the best there is and 1 being a waste of time and money.
List of Books that have been Reviewed
List of Restaurants that have been Reviewed
Introduction to the RtF Golf Course Review Series
List of Golf Courses that have been Reviewed
Welcome to the first of many anticipated reviews of mostly ordinary, sometimes special, golf courses the average Joe Palooka can play. In the beginning, these course reviews will be of tracts in "the midsection" of the country, i.e. as you go left to right. Think a vertical swath defined by two lines: one line drawn from the westernmost point of Wisconsin through the top left point of the Texas Panhandle the other line drawn from easternmost point of Michigan drawn through the easternmost point of Kentucky.
Your guide for this series, me, has approximately an 8-handicap—there’s an exact science for handicaps—but what that means basically if you take my best rounds of the season on an average course, say 6400 yards long, I’ll shoot an average of eight over par, or ~80. Thus, during a season you can see me mostly in the 80s, often in the 90s, hardly ever more than 100 for 18 holes.
So I’ve been playing for about 12 years as a middle class European-libertarian-American guy with a physiological/psychological age of ~40. I have typically belonged to a league, in Michigan, and still have a regular foursome that I’ve played with on Saturdays during the season—which stretches roughly from March thru October these days.
Playing alone is fine with me, in fact sometimes I prefer it, because you can put your practice hat on, hit two balls, learn without anyone making severe value judgments.
Golf, when I first started playing, was a bit of an addiction, and like most addictions, the peaks were followed by some pretty deep valleys. I’ve managed to develop a more even-tempered satisfaction now, as my game gets more consistent. So I wouldn’t say I have a passion for the game, just a fondness.
Many who profess a passion for the game don’t get to play often, don’t work on their game, and aren’t very good. (By "good" for a nonprofessional I mean £
80 most of the time. The saying is, "If you’re breaking 80, you’re not paying enough attention to your real job." But these days, 80 seems to be the benchmark.) Most guys, and girls, play for occasional social reasons and to get outdoors without having to hunt critters or go to the beach.
I’ve tried to practice once a week, taken lessons, read books, watched tapes, and generally acquired a positive mental attitude. Recently, a former English pro came into my sphere; he and his son have been particularly helpful. Finally, a young PGA professional in Texas, also a good friend, has contributed enormously to my appreciation of the game.
Something missing in all the writing about golf most of us see is the "you are there" treatment from a normal player. So that is part of what I’m trying to convey in this series, as it develops. Golf as it actually is.
I find the customs and the behavior in the game are as big a subject as the game itself.
Consider the time my league foursome was followed by a bunch of drunks in an outing. They hit into us on the LAST HOLE! All four of us WERE STANDING 220 YARDS OUT, IN THE MIDDLE OF THE FAIRWAY. Now, this behavior and what to do about it isn’t covered by articles in Golf Magazine, and we solved our disagreement in a gentlemanly way (after I removed my three-iron from the ringleader’s ass).
BTW, being hit by a golf ball hurts like hell and is occasionally fatal.
So it occurs to me I can share with readers the sense of participating in the "gestalt" of golf, i.e. the very human way golf is played by a good share of the people who take it up. Also, the reader can ideally come away having a good street-level impression of any particular course I or the other staffers at RtF get to review.