Are you a chop or duck?

A chop stinks at golf. A duck rationalizes why he stinks and often tries to make everyone else stink too…then they become scratch.

My father in law is a perfect example of transitioning from duck to chop. For 20 years, he would read articles in Golf Digest, they were wrong to begin with, he interpreted them incorrectly, then implemented them incorrectly, would have one miracle success out of 20 and proceed to teach this method to everyone he played with.

When I explained to him that purposely fanning the face open at impact to hit a flop shot was why he bladed or nearly whiffed 30 consecutive attempts.

He started laughing and told me he had read this method and over 20 years had inflicted this on hundreds of golfers.

I said…”You are a chop. What the ____ are you doing teaching people how to hit a shot the wrong way, that they are not even capable of hitting the right way?”

He is a lot better, but occasionally I will see him contorting an playing awful. Once he was trying to copy Miguel Cabrera, the other time he was trying to copy Nick Faldo.

He generally shot 100-110, BTW. Swing crack affects all.

I have been both a chop and a duck myself. The worse of a chop I became, the more of a duck I became. Difference is I realized I was a duck. I rationalized why I was bad by complaining about the course, the slow play and how Dave Pelz messed up my short game. Sometimes it’s the only way to keep from crying and quitting.

Most duck’s don’t realize they are being a duck and then they are scratch.

There is no shame in being a chop, or a self aware duck, but once you become scratch, I want nothing to do with you…and neither will anyone else.

When you hit a shot on a level lie and slope to the green with no wind, you pose and hit the ball in a lake 30 yards short of the green and complain the yardage market was off…you are being a duck.

When you take out your Taylor Made wrench and change the setting to 1* less loft to compensate for the short shot…you are scratch.

When you are a 15 handicap and you walk up to a 20 on the range and tell him he is not pronating enough at P3 which doesn’t allow him to hold the lag at P6, you are getting close to being scratch to the point of deserving an LW to the shin.

If you are a 25 handicap, have forged irons to work the ball, 3 different monogram Scotty Cameron putters for different conditions of greens, a giant staff bag with your name on it and tuned on the cart so the name can be seen, subscriptions to 4 golf publications, more than one Golf Channel instruction show on the DVR, a pre-shot routine that can be measured with a sundial and your stats are better than the PGA Tour average…

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11 Comments

  1. Calvin

    “Lob wedge to the shin”. ๐Ÿ™‚

    That gives me a little shiver, being a chop who is occasionally a duck.

    What a great game.

    Reply
    • Monte Scheinblum

      As long as you aren’t shooting 100 and telling people about pronation at P3…you are safe.

      Reply
      • Calvin

        I read that book. I mean I glazed over it. What is P-3 anyway? Never mind.

        I think I am safe. I usually shoot low eighties and have learned that giving swing advice is only useful for dispensing to someone who is beating you. I don’t think I have ever given anyone swing advice that didn’t make them worse. That is an evil weapon and I have given that up for the sake of my eternal soul. ๐Ÿ™‚

        Reply
  2. Bob Saunders

    “he would read articles in Golf Digest, they were wrong to begin with, he interpreted them incorrectly, then implemented them incorrectly, would have one miracle success out of 20 and proceed to teach this method to everyone he played with”

    Guilty as charged……….

    Reply
  3. woody

    There’s another category. People who can really golf, or once could, and either write or sign-off on articles in golf publications…which are entirely based on wrong conclusions from video…ideas which the author does not use himself.

    Maybe these guys tell themselves that they must do these things subconsciously, and video does not give false impressions.

    Reply
  4. Calvin

    Monte, is this legit?

    “Hi,

    This message may be coming to you as a surprise but I need your help.Few days back I made an unannounced vacation ,i came down to Madrid Spain, for a short vacation and got mugged at gun point last night at the park of the hotel where i lodged.All cash,credit cards and cell were stolen off me.I’ve been to the embassy and the Police here but they’re not helping issues at all,my flight leaves today and I’m having problems settling the hotel bills.

    The hotel manager won’t let me leave until i settle the hotel bills.i need you to loan me few $$ to sort the bills and get back home.I promise to pay back as soon as i get back home.Kindly get back to me so that i can get you the information you need and how you can get it to me asap

    Thanks
    Monte Scheinblum”

    Reply
  5. Jason

    I think it’s possible for someone that does not have the talent to play great golf to still be able to underdtand the swing, like coaches in elite sports that had never made it to the elite level. I have 2 boys aged 12 and 10. We play golf together. Sometimes they need help so they can enjoy themselves. I stay well away from anything technical, I just tell them to swing freely. The only thing I’ll monitor is ball position, grip and posture, nothing else. I’m a chop I admit and I know pleny of ducks. I have cavity Irons, 3 hybrids and a 11* driver. No bullshit from me, I know where I stand with my ability.

    Reply
    • woody

      Hopefully, they get a chance to play with good players. Not that it ever helped me figure out anything, but at least it showed me what was possible, and how simple it looked. This is how kids learn a lot of things:

      “[Mirror] neurons are scattered throughout key parts of our brain — the premotor cortext and centers for language, empathy, and pain — and fire not only as we perform a certain action but also WHEN WE WATCH SOMEONE ELSE PERFORM THAT ACTION. These neurons have been studied in the past for their roles in movement and other functions. Now, however, researchers are examining them intensely for what seems to be an additional function — the way they fire in response to something observed.

      “The discovery of this mechanism, made about a decade ago, suggests that EVERYTHING WE WATCH SOMEONE ELSE DO, WE DO AS WELL–IN OUR MINDS. At its most basic, this finding means we mentally rehearse or imitate every action we witness, whether it is a somersault or a subtle smile. It explains how we learn to smile, talk, walk, dance, or play tennis.” ~ Scientific American Mind

      Reply
  6. HoldTheLag

    I am a chopped duck

    Reply
  7. Bill

    When you are a 15 handicap and you walk up to a 20 on the range and tell him he is not pronating enough at P3 which doesnโ€™t allow him to hold the lag at P6, you are getting close to being scratch to the point of deserving an LW to the shin.

    Nuff said, LOL

    Reply

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