I was reminded on Saturday why I write this blog and seem to be on a one man mission to save golf and save us from ourselves.
It’s supposed to be fun, a game, something for recreation even for those that play for a living. Lee Trevino comes to mind.
I know I have my share of techno babble rants, but it’s my version of methadone.
Today I was on the chipping green and there was a young Asian lad practicing his chipping. Probably 15 or 16 and decked out as if he was on hiatus from the PGA Tour. White pants, shirt one size too small and Oakley sunglasses. He had forged blades, a $500 golf bag, a Scotty Cameron Putter with a circle T head cover and an attitude to match the garb.
He could juggle the ball on his wedge, he was stepping off the distance to the flag each time he changed targets and took 30 seconds to fidget his positions and routine on every shot.
He would pop his hips open before he even ended his back swing on a 40 foot chip and not only held the wrist angle through impact, he actually reduced it.
You know what else he could do? Rocket stab every third ball 20 feet past the hole.
He then went to the range to hit some balls. The speed of his backswing could be measured with a sundial and it was obvious he was contriving his backswing that slow so he could hit every perfect position. He then rerouted the club underneath to swing more inside/out and seriously reduced the angle (added lag) coming into impact.
He popped his hips open even more than in his chipping. His zipper was facing the target before his backswing was even complete.
The best, or worst part is that I saw him shank or chunk pull about 15 out of the 20 shots I witnessed. None of that stopped him from pulling the club up into a perfect, aesthetic finish with a reverse C spine angle and so over rotated that the shaft pointed down the target line at the finish. Otherwise given the moniker by me as “The Scratch Finish.”
Therein lies my point. No one cares anymore how well the ball is struck. As long as we are hitting all of our positions and look pretty.
The video below is an example (Obviously not the 16 year old kid). If you feel like I am making fun of this guy, I kind of am (nice English). He is trying so hard to make a perfect swing, but he has no rotation or weight shift at all on his down swing and just throws his arms at it. He has to pull his front foot back in order to way over rotate and make that perfect “scratch” finish. The ball is long gone and his right foot is completely flat, but it sure comes up into perfect pose position.
In a few days I have some awful video of another “victim” of golf culture. It’s not for the faint of heart and would probably get an NC-17 rating by the Motion Picture Association of America.