Doug Lesko is the VP of Product & Golf Course Reviews here at TheGolfChick.com. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org and on twitter @protipsgolf. The Mesquite Golf page on this site are his reviews of our local courses.
About Doug, in his own words:
I’m a golfer. I love to play golf, watch golf, talk about golf, and read about golf. I’m a former Head Golf Professional and Assistant General Manager at a semi-private club in Florida. I left to go work in the real world for 10 years, hated it, and now I’m back in the golf business working at a golf shop in the desert.
I can’t understand why everyone doesn’t play golf, but even more than that I don’t understand why some people that do play have no idea how to navigate a golf course. I don’t like five hour rounds. Correction – I hate five hour rounds. I’ve never heard anyone say “That round was way too fast. We need to slow down next time.”
All too often while waiting on the tee I see two carts sitting side by side up ahead. Three of the guys are sitting in the carts, one is on his phone, and one is telling the other guy about the birdie he made on this hole in ‘96 or ‘97. The 4th guy is standing next to his drive doing his best Tiger Woods grass toss, trying to figure out how this 2mph wind is going to affect his upcoming bladed 5 iron. Having decided it’s a two club, wind he pulls the 7. Now the fun begins: practice swing, practice swing, practice swing… no, wait. He’s only 210 out, 2mph downwind. It’s got to be the 8 – he saw Bubba hit this exact shot last week. The fact that he just ripped his driver 190 never enters his mind. Four more practice swings, this time with the 8, then pures it 70 yards. Still not out of our landing area, but on to player #2 where the show begins again then again and one more time. Unless the 2 players in one of the carts are women. Most women hit it then hit it again until they get to the green where they are lining up their putts while watching their husbands toss grass in the air.
Golf is hard, playing golf doesn’t have to be. Golf is a game where you police yourself and call penalties on yourself. Only you can speed up play – unless you are scared of those 90 year old volunteer rangers that most courses use now.
Here are a few easy things that everyone can do to make golf more enjoyable for everybody.
1. Play the right tees. Most scorecards have recommended tees based on handicaps. A better way may be to look at the holes on the card. You should be able to comfortably hit a 6 iron or less to most of the par 3’s and 4’s.
2. Practice on the range, play golf on the course. The only time I take practice swings on the course is when I’m trying to stay loose because I’m waiting, I have a difficult stance or lie, on chips to get a feel for the lie, or if I’m trying to hit a big draw or fade. Three or four practice swings on every shot just wastes time and wears you out.
3. If you’re the longer hitter in your cart, walk to your ball and get ready to hit while your partner is getting ready. Take a couple clubs with you; twenty seconds after your partner hits you should be pulling the trigger. Even if you grabbed the wrong clubs he can drive over and you’re ready to go.
4. Unless you’re playing in a tournament, play ready golf. Common decency tells you an eagle or birdie has honors, but any other time, hit at will. Same goes for around the green. If you have a 50+ foot putt and no one has made it to the flag to tend it, putt it if you’re ready. Chances are it’s not going in. If it does and you’re playing a friendly round, nobody’s going to make you take that penalty.
5. Be aware of your surroundings. Park the cart on the path at the back of the green. If you brought a club with you to chip, lay it at the back of the green after your chip so you can pick it up on your walk back to the cart. Start lining up your putt and fixing ball marks while others are putting as long as you can stay out of their line.
6. Write the scores down on the way to the next tee. No eagles or birdies? Grab your club and swing away.
I’ll get off my soapbox now. Seems like since I turned 50 I’ve turned into that grouchy old man I’ve always wanted to be.
I hope you enjoy my posts to Thegolfchick.com. I’m told that I have a dry sense of humor. Some of what I say could be taken the wrong way. Please don’t let it bother you, or do. One of the few advantages of getting old is being able to speak my mind.
You can find me on Twitter @protipsgolf, or doing my favorite thing in the world, playing 18 with @TheGolfChick. If you find yourself in Mesquite or Vegas stop by Ready Golf and Gear. It’s the best golf shop in the desert (as voted by the employees of @ReadyGolfNV). Ask for Doug – let’s tee it up.
Editor’s note: Full disclosure: Doug is also my man. Nepotism at thegolfchick.com. Scandal! 😉