10 Mulligans | VailDaily.com

10 Mulligans

Chris Freud

If you need 10 mulligans, three or four foot wedge per round and “winter rules” in August just to break 120, you’re in good company. There’s plenty of us hackers out there.

Upon arriving to the first tee box, I usually say to the unfortunate souls with whom I will be spending the next four hours is, “Hi, I’m Chris. I’m a really bad golfer, but I play bad golf fast.”

And, that’s the point. One of the many great things about this game is that a hack like me can go out and play golf with someone who generally cracks 80. And, we still can have fun.

This can happen bad golfers should observe the following rules:

– Check your ego at the door. Play from the right set of tees. Sure, at The Raven, all your buddies are bombing them off the back tees. Play from the golds ” 6,000 yards or so is enough golf for you for one afternoon. You and your foursome will appreciate it.

– Go to Wal-Mart and buy a ton of golf balls. Top Flites run at about 55 cents per ball and get lost just as efficiently as Titleist Pro V1’s. Life is hard enough out there. You might as well not bankrupt yourself in the process. Odds are your swing’s the problem, not the ball.

– Speaking of golf balls, bring a bunch to each round. Accept the fact that you are going to lose a bunch of them when you play. Sure, the rule book says that you have five minutes to search for a lost ball. But if you do this each time your ball strays, one of your playing partners is going to wrap his or her 4-iron around your neck. Give a cursory look, take a stroke and drop. After all, you’re not setting the course record today.

– Along those lines, keep pace with your group. Most of the good golfers you meet out there are generally going to be understanding of your travails, but that goodwill goes fast if you’re laying eight and there’s still 200 yards left on the hole. If you have a blowup hole, pick up, take a double-par and move on. And, for heaven’s sake, don’t stand over a putt for a minute or two when it’s for triple bogey. It’s not like that putt is going to win the Masters.

– Have a good attitude about it. By all means, go out and try to do the best you can. But, yes, you are going to make some horrible shots out there. Shake it off and try to make a good shot on your next swing. Club-throwing, swearing and the like will only make it worse and only serves to make the round just as miserable for you as it does for the rest of your foursome.

– Savor the little victories. Golfers, good or bad, know the old expression about that one shot that keeps you coming back. Remember the one good, soaring drive you had off the tee, the nice approach to within 10 feet of the hole, a sand save or a 30-foot putt, which somehow made that glorious sound of hitting the bottom of the cup. Savor those moments and take those shots into your next round.

– And, I’d be remiss without finishing this list with two things. Go to your PGA pro and get a lesson; and keep plugging away at the practice facility of your choosing.

Support Local Journalism