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Handicap Index

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  1. There is this one hole on my home course. It is a short par 4 with a tree-lined 90 degree dogleg left. The actual distance from the tee to the hole is about 230 yards, but you can't actually go for it due to the trees and then the water on the other side of them. Just, no. The proper way to play the hole is two 9-irons or something like that. It's really quite easy to par this hole. The first time I took my nephew there, he could not resist the temptation. He went for it, somehow lifted the ball barely over the trees and landed his tee stroke on the green. The next bunch of times we played the course, he went for this shot again, always failing miserably. So he would get a 6 or 7 on what is certainly the easiest par 4 on the course, until he finally figured it out. Thing is, I have done this too. Not as obviously. But I tend to remember that time I nutted the 3-wood and cleared the bunker to be on in 2 or when I punched through the trees to roll it up onto the green. I think the worst thing that can happen to me is to succeed at a low percentage shot the first time I play a course. I even find myself trying to recruit cart-mates to be my caddie with requests like "remind me that I'm stupid if you see this club in my hand for the second shot" or "don't ever let me do that again", like a drunk pleading with the bartender. Calmly typing here, I can see perfectly well the hindsight that informs me that, no, I did not have command of that shot. But at the time, it really does seem reasonable. Someone please chime in with a similar story or advice or something. I think I need a digital shoulder to cry on.
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