Indeed. The icicles are melting though, with the 4 ft long (I'm not kidding) daggers starting to fall from the roofs of the buildings on campus. I should have the opportunity to play sometime soon again.
These are myths that I hear a lot. Some are just eye rolling trivia but some can hurt.
1. Tour pros continuously vary their shot shape based on hole demand. Not true. They have one predominant shot shape they play almost all the time. Only when in jail or extreme condition do they actually try anything out of their comfort zone - which is smaller than most folks think.
2. Tour pros are like swing doctors. They know everything there is to know about the golf swing. Nope - they are simply phenomenal listeners and executors.
3. You must understand the swing in it's entirety to learn and become better - Yeah, good luck on that path.
4. To have lag just hold the angle of the shaft to forearm until impact. - Lag is a result of good mechanics and club position and path. Can't force it.
5. You must have a superlight grip pressure (2-3 on a scale of 1 to 10) to hit good shots. - While white knuckling is just bad, you do need more grip pressure than you think.
The problem is the twitter length version, get it as close to the hole as possible, is easy to read as, hit the longest club. Really the argument in LSW (backed by stats), is around a multi-faceted risk assessment. Simplifying less than the twitter version, hit it as far as possible without bringing "too much" risk into play. The long version is basically a law of total probability argument, where you assess the probability of various outcomes with each current shot choice, and weight them by the average shots to hole out given each outcome, and choose the lowest.
For example, you're sitting at 250 on a par 5. You go through the potential outcomes of an 8i and 3i and estimate average shots to hole out from each: on target, slightly off target, chunk, blade, in jail, in hazard, open look but super penal rough, OB, whatever. Then you think about the chances of these outcomes, and calculate the total expected score from each choice.
The point in LSW is that you can't go through a bunch of equations for every shot, but if you're accurate about your average shot dispersions across clubs, then the typical bogey or better golfer is often overestimating the increase in risk from going for the longer shot, and underestimating the decrease in expected number of shots to hole out from getting it closer.
The rule of thumb is that if there's not something in the layout that is a big risk at the longer distance but not at the short one – so in your case lateral hazard or big fairway thinning or big fairway bunker or much or penal rough or the like that starts at 75 yards out – then generally your lower expected total score is from hitting the longer club. The strokes you lose when you do hit an errant long iron but wouldn't have hit an errant short iron are more than made up for by the strokes you gain from having an approach half as long when you don't hit an errant shot.
Of course, it's always case by case and player by player.