My Second Game, Now With New-and-Improved Grips

Three friends and I went up to the Chateau Elan, Par 3 yesterday for my second golf outing. While my score didn’t improve that much (a 51, down from 53), I felt like I played better, in terms of mechanics. I had just as much fun as the first time, even though it was about 8 degrees hotter.

Also of note is that I was playing with new grips on my irons. As I mentioned before I took my clubs to the PGA Tour Superstore and got some pretty, red Lamkin Crossline grips put on, which made a nice change. It was almost like getting a new set of clubs, at a fraction of the cost. Here’s what it looks like

I’m playing this same course again tomorrow (Tuesday), so maybe I’ll shave a few more strokes off my score.

My First Golf Game In Nearly 20 Years

I played golf last Sunday for the first time in many years. We went to the 9 Hole, Par 3 course up at Chateau Elan and had a great time. I shot nearly 2x par, but for not having played in so long, I think that qualifies as “not that bad.” Here’s the score card:

The 9th hole was the fun one. You have to hit over a lake to get to the green. The first shot each of us took, we put the ball straight into the water. My second shot, with a 3 wood, was beautiful: straight, high and long. The ball landed on the green, about 20 feet from the hole. Putting was another story, but it was fun to make such a nice tee shot.

The hardest hole was 5. You have to skirt a lake, and that wasn’t easy. I lost three balls in that lake.

I went to the PGA Tour Superstore in Duluth on Saturday and bought a new golf bag. It’s quite nice, with lots of pockets and dividers and such, and these auto-retracting legs for standing it up. It was on sale, which makes it even better. I also looked at grips and talked to the guy in the club-building department about getting mine regripped. I’m going to take them up there this week to get some new grips put on them, since mine are old, wrapped leather that have slipped and turned.

I can’t wait to play again.

I Had My First Golf Lesson

I had my first golf lesson on Saturday. It was fun, and I wasn’t starting out as terrible as I had imagined. We started out working on swing mechanics without a ball present, but once we moved up to using a ball, only once did I swing and completely miss the ball. Every other swing made contact; it was just the quality of the hit that changed. There were a few rollers and a few “D’oh!” moments, but for the most part, I got some good hits.

My right biceps is still sore from Saturday, too. I need to stretch out before-hand next time more. Bob showed me some stretching exercises to do, I just didn’t take the time to actually do them so they could stretch me out. I’ll know better next time.

The clubs I have are a mixture of ancient and not-quite-so-ancient. The two woods I have are from a set my parents gave me back in the mid-eighties. The irons are some that my wife bought from a neighbor’s yard sale a few years ago. Bob said that the irons (Ram) were quite good, but the woods were “going to put you [me] at a disadvantage.” The problem, he said, was that the faces on them were so small that you get no margin for error. He said that modern woods are three to four times as large, and he would recommend getting something else. We did hit some with the driver, but he was right about margin for error. So yesterday I went to my local Play It Again Sports store and picked up a new 1 and 3 “wood” that had enormous faces and heads that are far, far larger than my old ones. I’ll give them a try tonight. And I put “wood” in quotes because there’s not a scrap of anything resembling wood on them. It’s all aluminum and carbon and such. Or something. I don’t know what they really are made of, but it’s definitely not wood.

I’ve got a second lesson scheduled for this Saturday and I need to practice some this week. I’m going to try to get to the driving range tonight and at least one more time before Saturday.