Originally Posted by Fourputt
I can't fathom why you wouldn't want to be competitive. Golf has been handicapped since just about forever. It is such a difficult game to excel at that it's inevitable that there will always be a wide range of skill levels, and to make the game enjoyable and competitive, handicapping just makes good sense.
I would get zero enjoyment out of playing a 3 handicap straight up same as I'd get zero enjoyment from playing a 20 without giving him strokes. It has nothing to do with bragging about who beat who - that's reserved for when I do play others who are close to me in ability. It has to do with making a match or skins game competitive. What's the point of playing a match when it's essentially over on the front 9 (in actual fact the result can probably be published before playing from the first tee)? That just sounds stupid to me. It certainly wouldn't be fun, regardless of which end of the whipping I'm on.
I live on a island where there is no golf. To travel to the nearest course would cost a minimum of $400 round trip and the course charges $250 to play for non hotel guests. That's a bit out of my price range.
I'm about as competitive a person as anyone can be. Any of my family members or friends would attest to that. I am competitive to a fault, and I openly admit it.
Playing against a 10 handicap that gives me 12 strokes, is not competing to me. I find no competitive value in that. If I can't beat someone on an even playing field, what's the point?
You're not competing against the person, you're competing against yourself. And that's fine, and that's why I play golf the way I do.
I cannot take joy in beating someone if my scorecard has a higher number than theirs. They won. Period. I'll play against anyone, but I want to beat them, I don't want charity points. If I lose every time, then so be it. I'd rather lose than be given free points.
What I can't fathom, is why some people can't golf with other people without needing to adjust scores to "compete". I have no problem conceding that many people are better than I am. I can play with them, try to learn, and have a great time without living in some fantasy land where I "beat" them because I had a good day, and they had a bad one...even though their bad day was still better than my good day.
I know I'm in the minority here, and that's fine. I don't judge anyone who competes with the handicap system, so to be fair, don't judge me for thinking it's BS.
One quick example and I'll end my rant...
I never played tennis until my girlfriend and I started dating about 3.5 years ago. She played varsity in high school, and beat my ass every time. I didn't ask for free points, or to use the doubles lines. I kept playing and getting better, and I can routinely beat her now. Not a great accomplishment beating a girl, but either way...I don't want free points, and neither does she. Beating someone based on the HI isn't really accomplishing anything on a competition level.