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Everything posted by PirateJim

  1. Set of Ping G20 irons, Blue Dot, R flex graphite shafts. Garmin Approach S1 GPS. The clubs sorta fell off Santa's sleigh a bit early and I've had 'em to the range a few times. For me, a big improvement over my 12+ year old Nicklaus irons that weren't very forgiving... My swing still needs a good bit of work, and they aren't a Silver Bullet, but I think they'll really help getting it together over the next year or so. Haven't tried the GPS yet, but using my iPhone was a PITA and the S1 seems real simple and gives me all the info I think I need. (Edited because spell checkers don't help with crummy syntax.)
  2. First, I think the overall gloomy economy and gloomier outlook for the next few years has far more to do with how many people are playing than course layouts. That said, I think a golf course needs to be designed with its intended audience in mind. i.e. a municipal course really ought to be laid out to be challenging but not too hard on the average Joe/Jane who may be turning up to play. Ditto for private clubs, but with the proviso that they can tailor the layout (to some extent at least) to the desires of the membership. But a good course architect should be able to lay out a course that is both fun for the average person and challenging for the better golfers. They definitely should NOT be designing holes just to make people cringe with they look out from the tee, and given some of the pictures I've seen I wouldn't doubt there is some of that going on out there.
  3. Well y'all are WAY tougher... or something... dedicated I guess, than I am. Today started at 47 and I hated having to walk the dog. It was low 50s by the time we left for church, and it didn't break 60 until after lunch. At about 1:30 it was up to 63 and I decided I could brave a sojourn to the driving range. It was sorta cold but not too bad. So my answer is... 63. Colder than that and I'll wait for better weather. Good thing I live in Florida.
  4. I was born in Florida and have lived around the state all my life. Love it, wouldn't really wish to live anywhere else. But what has been said about summer golf is true. Walking in August is a good way to either have a heat stroke or get struck by lightning. Or both. Summer is the rainy season and many courses near the coasts are build on FLAT land and thus have some pretty tough drainage issues. You'll find that a lot of these will make you keep on the paths and you will get in plenty of squishy walking even with a cart. While there is golf available most everywhere in the state, there are definitely pockets where the courses are pretty thick. The more affluent retiree heavy areas like Sarasota/Manatee County south of Tampa, Ft. Myers farther south, and Naples are all rich with courses both public and private. You will find that real estate prices vary considerably too. I'd suggest that you do some serious reading on the internet, including shopping some of the real estate web sites for the areas that seem to interest you, then come down and visit those areas. Even if golf is your current goal, you still have to like living in an area and be sort of happy with your neighborhood, access to shopping, and with the traffic etc. The bigger the town, the more golf, but also the thicker the traffic. That is an important consideration because if you don't have a primary course close to home you will end up spending a lot of non-quality time in the car! Once you identify a specific town to focus on, find a golf course you like and start house shopping. A good golfing Realtor could be of immense help with finding a nice course and a home near it.
  5. Cousin but not legally = Illegitimate child of your father's adopted brother?
  6. How to respond when you are in the group hit into seems to have been well thrashed out, but I'll just toss in one comment that nobody has yet made. People in the offender's own group should really be saying something as well! I well understand the occasional great shot (from way farther out than 150...) that gets into the group in front. But if a group I'm in was waiting for the folks in front to clear the green and somebody went ahead and took their shot as described I'd be complaining to them myself. I don't wish to be associated with that sort of behavior.
  7. Okay, my disclaimer: I am not a good golfer now and never have been really, but my parents got me started at a young age and in the last fifty or so years I've had lessons from a number of different pros during my periodic starts and stops with the game. I personally suspect there is only one "general all-purpose basic golf swing." Individual swings that we've developed for ourselves over the years that deviate from that swing are really compounded mistakes that negate one another to varying degrees of success. If you are looking for lessons to help correct some specific issue (i.e. hooking, slicing, etc.) I would expect you could find a pro who could help you make an adjustment within your existing swing. However, if you simply go to them and say "My game sucks and I want to get better." they may reasonably be expected to try to get your swing to more closely resemble that general all-purpose basic swing because that's a good place for most of us to be for real improvement.
  8. Great thread, and a worthy topic for every golfer to take out and examine from time to time, IMHO. I think each of us has to make these decisions based not only on our perceptions of our skills and chances of success, but also on our own personalities and what makes us feel good about ourselves both long and short term. Personally, I think that golf is a very strategic game and that playing it safe and sure will probably work out in most golfers favor over time. (Naturally, what constitutes safe and sure varies along with skill level.) But, if you lie awake nights wishing you'd gone for the green, then maybe you should have. It is still a game and you have to do it the way that seems fun to you.
  9. I am still accumulating score cards and haven't yet established a handicap, but as most of those are (sadly) mid nineties it will come out in the 20's. So far pretty much all of my game is quite erratic, but I'm getting some lessons and putting in a good bit of time on the range and putting green. So... - Gain decent consistency in both distance and direction in my long game and develop some confidence in fairway wood play. - Develop better consistency in my short game and finally learn to chip (a skill that has eluded me in all of my previous attempts at golf.). Better putting too, of course, but I suspect that will remain a lifelong quest. - Progress on the above general goals may be judged by my handicap; I don't think it is too aggressive to aim at 15 this time next year I do hope I'll be back next June to update this after realizing I was way too conservative in this goal... :-P Jim
  10. Great story about the mice. For the record, I see mice living outdoors also, and though I've never had one, I know rats (much larger cousins of mice) can and do also live in houses. This is not my story, but one that my father told. Back in probably the 1950's they didn't have the nice injection molded Port-O-Potties that we know these days, but instead at construction sites would set up a crude outhouse formed with corrugated metal sheeting bent around until the two ends met and open at the top. ( Not sure if there was even a door or if you just sort of pulled the ends to.) Anyway, there was one of these set up in an obviously inopportune spot along the fairway and according to my dad, when he hooked a drive into the top of the thing you could hear the ball "spinning" around inside sounding like a machine-gun and sending a very indisposed construction worker diving out for his life. It would have been pure gold on YouTube. My own story involves my brother-in-law who was down for a visit some years ago during one of my many periods of not actively playing. Somehow it was agreed that he and I would play, and I approached the whole thing with as positive an attitude as possible recognizing that he was a pretty good player and I was a hacker that hadn't played in several years. We got to the first tee and I won the coin toss to hit first, and knowing my own weaknesses decided to cut my losses and just hit a three iron. After a practice swing or two (no driving range...) I took my shot. Call it muscle memory if you like, I call it dumb luck, but I hit it really pure and walked off the tee feeling pretty good about myself. My poor brother-in-law, who no doubt had every reasonable expectation of trouncing me that day, then walked to the tee with his driver in hand and a steely determination to out drive that three iron shot chiseled on his face. When his knuckles turned white on the grip I thought he might be in trouble. He took a full and majestic back-swing prior to shanking the ball into the cart shed, the door of which was obviously badly situated. I can tell you for sure that the ball ricocheted around in there for a good 15-20 seconds and attracted a good bit of attention. Needless to say, in the end I got the trouncing that was due me for laying off the game, but it wasn't until about the sixth hole that the poor guy started to settle down and play the game he was capable of. Jim
  11. I started playing in my teens as well, and also gave it up before I was out of high school though sadly I've never been as good as you were/are. Since then, I've started and stopped playing several times, the most recent was about 10-12 years ago (time flies faster in your fifties...) I just spent a good amount of time looking at the new clubs available. I think there have indeed been some technology advances in the last decade or so, and thus made a decision to buy some new clubs. Now, that said, I think that there is a LOT of hype about the differences in clubs and brands and the wondrous advances since last years model (which it seems wasn't as wondrous as it seemed last year after all. ) Most of the major brands seem to have a line of clubs aimed at specific market segments (read player skill levels). I'm thinking once you identify which of those segments/levels you belong in the differences from one manufacturer to another probably aren't that great. I ended up buying a set of Ping G20 irons and so far I feel good about the decision. But I expect I'd also be happy with Callaway Razr X, or any other of several game improvement type irons. I plan to have those for some long time and won't be agonizing over the latest and greatest next year.
  12. PirateJim

    Anyone else?

    I love playing with good friends, but I can't really say the same for playing with strangers, though there have been notable exceptions. Generally, however, people I end up joining with are either WAY too serious and intense or are managing to suck down two Buds a hole and three on the par fives. (I'll take the latter, but by the back nine it usually starts getting too loud generally, and the trips to the bush take longer than the group in front.) Heh... maybe if I played on higher class golf courses? I'm an only child, and have been told that explains why I seem to be perfectly happy with my own company. Maybe that's it, but I know I'm perfectly happy playing alone.
  13. Hello. I'm one of those folks that has sort of hovered around the edges of golf all my life but hasn't really committed to the game until very recently. Knowing my parents, I expect I had a club shoved into my hands within hours of starting to walk. During my teens and early 20's I played fairly regularly, though with the many distractions a young man faces I never really committed. Then marriage and other interests put the clubs into the back of the closet except for some brief periods when I sort of took the game back up to please other folks. Now, pushing 59, I've decided to take the game up for myself. I am hopeful that this subtle difference will mean a long term commitment and a lot of good times to come. Being also somewhat of a computer geek I had to find a good golf forum to follow and this one appears to fit the need nicely. I doubt I'll be a prolific poster, but will be lurking about. Jim
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