Golf balls, lost balls, and tightwads
So yesterday, I argued that all golf balls are not ideal for all golfers, much the same way as golf clubs. I furthermore proposed that people get fitted for club and ball combinations.
One problem with this is that we switch balls more often than we switch clubs. It’s also hard to test different kinds of balls, because usually we hit range balls or shag balls, which are very different from the ones we play on the course.
In fact, for tightwads like me, how we come to play one ball versus another is largely accidental: I play balls I find in the woods, rough, and lakes where I tend to spend a certain portion of each round.
Legendary golf course architect Alister MacKenzie once wrote, “My Scotch blood comes to the fore again in prejudicing me against any hazards which created the expense, annoyance and irritation of losing balls or even searching for them.”
Amen! And this goes tenfold for those balls that cost $50+ per dozen. I don’t know about you, but as for Alister and me, we’re not the sort to just toss $5 into the woods without a fight.
Although I often go a round without losing a ball, I cannot ever recall a round in which I did not have to search for one, often fending off ticks, copperheads, and irate homeowners berating me for hooking my tee shot into their yard. (Hey—don’t buy a house 275 yards down the fairway, you moron!)
If I did not have to search for my ball, I’m not sure how I’d restock my ammunition.
This brings me to some poll questions:
1) How do you (the three or so readers of my blogs) obtain most of your golf balls? Are they gifts, purchases, or discoveries?
2) What is the maximum you will pay for a dozen balls? What’s the average price you pay?
3) Do you have a favorite ball? If so, what is it and why? Is there a ball you won’t play at all? What and why?
I have a feeling, there are more folks like me and Alister our there than there are folks who strive to find the perfect ball for their game (despite my previous admonitions).
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Given your son's interest and size, I'd say it is a good time to get him some real clubs.
La Jolla Golf has been in the junior club business for a long time, so they'd be my first choice. They produce sets for 3-yr-olds on up.
A related great product for kids (and adults) is the AlmostGolf Ball. (almostgolf.com, (800) 998-1077, MSRP $12/doz.) These are made of a solid foam that cannot hurt anyone or anything, but they don't get deformed and they spin almost like real balls, but only go 100 yds or so with a full swing. Great for adults chipping and little kids who want to swing away in the yard.
I guess that's because I got them pre-trained.