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The Anchoring Ban
So, it's official now. The "powers that be" have ruled that the anchored stroke must go away by 2016. After months of all kinds of noise, they did what they wanted to do. Golf will survive and all will be OK, but it all seems pretty silly to me.

I didn't pay detailed attention to the entire dialog, but it really boils down to this: the decision-makers at the USGA and R&A just felt like this didn't "look like golf" to them.

I'm a golf traditionalist, and I certainly think that we need ruling bodies to set guidelines and rules. The game has been played by essentially the same basic set of rules for centuries. But like any other ruling body (see U.S. Government), rules-making always gets totally out of hand. But since the main objective here was to preserve what the game "looks like", I'm releasing the old Texas WedgeHog (rootin' out the truth) to offer my other suggestions that they might consider:
  • Does it really "look like" golf when tour pros are driving par-4 holes, sometimes with 3-woods and hitting short irons to par five holes?

  • Does it really "look like" golf when players will be hitting 7- and 8-irons from the same spot on Merion's 18th hole where Hogan hit his famous one-iron shot?

  • Does it really look like golf when courses are full of railroad ties, waterfalls, man-made creeks and streams, rock formations, etc.?

  • Does it really "look like" golf when most all the golf shoes now look like tennis shoes ... or house slippers ... or worse?

  • Or golfers routinely wear their shirt tails out?

  • Or cargo shorts?

  • Or caps on backwards?

  • Can you imagine what Hogan, Nelson, Demaret, Snead, et al would think of today's tour professionals who are as likely to be unshaven as not?

  • And the wardrobes that look like a NASCAR car?

  • What about flip-flops in the club building?

  • Or on men's feet at all, for that matter?

  • Not to mention, even on the golf course?


I could go on and on, but there are a lot of things that "don't look like golf", to me anyway. And I have mixed emotions about whether that's good for the game or not. It's always been a "gentleman's game", and that was fine with me. Our society's relaxing standards of what's proper or not certainly stretches well beyond the golf course, and as I get older I can see where my Dad was so upset at where we took things in the 1960s and 70s.

You can choose what "looks like golf" to you, and I will for me. And maybe we'll meet up at a course someday.

I'll be the guy in saddle oxford golf shoes, clean shaven with my shirt tucked in, wielding Reid Lockhart blades, a 400 cc driver and putting conventionally, though probably not all that well.

And I'll take my cap off when I go inside.
The Wedge Guy is sponsored by SCOR Golf, where Terry Koehler is President/CEO. He encourages you to submit your questions or topics to be considered for his columns on Tuesdays and Fridays. Each submission automatically enters you to win a SCOR4161 wedge to be given away monthly. Click the button below to submit your question or topic today.


[ comments ]
ally1957 says:
N/A, N/A, N/A, Guilty, Guilty some of the time depends where Im playing, Guilty, Not guilty, Guilty, Ughh!, Ughh! with socks,
Do take cap off when going inside though amazing how being a cub scout drums it in to you.
5/25/13
 
parman68166 says:
Permissiveness has always been a problem with recent generations, which is why we have many of the problems with today's generation. They would rather try to "buy" a game rather than work to get a lasting one, which is in large part our creation. I agree with all your comments, and can only shake my head at today's generation. Where will the permissiveness end? Only time will tell, but it makes no sense to bolt the door once the horse is out. So, we march on and hope that somewhere along the way our example will somehow make an impression and lead to a far more favorable legacy.
5/25/13
 
ally1957 says:
found an empty (almost) bag of grass, weed, canabis (all the same)on the course yesterday so which is the worst. Declining moral standards throughout the world these days, what happens on the golf course doesn't even reach the scale we have buggy's on the green bags on the tee, used sanitary towels in the car park, greens that are unplayable, bunkers where the sand is like concrete and no one cares or is two scared to kick up a fuss in case they might lose a few dollars of income or worse complain to the boss who invariabley comes down on the side of the paying guest.
Thats my rant over for this week.
5/28/13
 
diamond_jim says:
Your more serious moans relate to ball distances. It seems to me that Jack Niklaus is right in his opinion that the ball should be depowered. Thefact that I can hit a ball 30 yards further at 65 than I could at 25 seems odd. The depowering of the ball would save the golf clubs millions, it would mean that courses do not have to be continually lengthened and that golf fees for us would come down. Poor golf ball manufacturers, my heart bleeds for them
8/27/13
 
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Terry Koehler is "The Wedge Guy" and President of SCOR Golf- The Short Game Company.

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