Originally Posted by Golfingdad
I disagree. You are making the assumption that the guy who plays "his own version of the rules" does it "simply and routinely." I totally agree with you in regards to guys who FREQUENTLY hit balls astray, yet NEVER hit provisionals and ALWAYS play OB as if it's a lateral water hazard. But in your (general "your" here, not just you specifically) blanket statements ("your handicap isn't valid," "you are not playing golf," etc) you are making too many assumptions.
For example, I ALWAYS play an OB shot like a lateral hazard (+1 extra penalty stroke) when I hit one OB and fail to hit a provisional. But "always" is a little misleading here because I can count on one hand the amount of times I have EVER had to do that. (In the last couple of years, the only instance was when I discovered that the course had an unexpected internal OB. I dropped, lay 3, and hacked my way to a triple) It happens a lot less than 10% of the time, I can tell you that.
Further, even if I'm taking it exactly as a lateral hazard and even if I NEVER hit a provisional, my handicap would probably change none. If I play OB like a lateral, I'm lying 2 somewhere near the boundary of the course, in a place where it is a lot more likely I'm going to finish with a double or higher anyway. Double bogey is my ESC score so matter how I play it, the chances are very high that I am ending up at ESC regardless.
This is why I don't understand, and never will, how so many people seem to be around here are so rigid in regards to this sort of thing. These quirky little scenarios are going to affect people's handicaps by a small amount, if any, regardless of how they play it (finish the hole incorrectly, or like fourputt, just pickup and play a 17 hole round), and that's why I wish everybody would adopt a little more of a "live and let live" attitude, and just, well, lighten up.
I disagree. I love this game, so i will play by the rules of the game.
Also, i've had this scenario before, in a tournament match. 1st ball supposedly OB, Provisional OB, Provisional in fairway. Found first ball, very close to being over the line. We were told by our coach, since there isn't any rules officials, to play both balls and get one of the coaches to check later on, as to which score to sign. This was how we decided things, it was agreed upon, like local rules. So, on one hand i would have an 8 versus a 4. I sunk a 30' for par off the first found ball. We went back later, and i told them were the ball was (we marked it with a tee). It was hard to tell if it was in, you couldn't get a direct line between the two white stakes. It was ruled that it was in, benefit of the doubt went to me on that.
So there's the difference, a 4 and an 8. When you hit a ball OB, and drop a ball, you bring into consideration that you might have hit a hazard or OB again on your provisional. What if OB was right and Water was left, you hit it OB, walk down and drop. You could easily hit another hazard with a provisional and your score would go up. To me i can't say i actually score what i did if i didn't follow the rules. This is me, its a position i stand by. I am not saying you can't take what ever drops you want, you are your own person. But i will voice my opinion on the fact that i think people should obey the rules of golf, strictly, if they are serious about there handicap. If they want to take a round off, and just play around, go ahead, but don't mark it down as something official.
I will do this, i will play golf with my dad, we take a full mulligans, give putts, have a fun time. Then there are times were him and I will play a course we like, or a special course (TPC sawgrass). There i will play by the rules of golf because i want the challenge. I would consider only the later as anything towards my true handicap.