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The yips are no laughing matter

Some idle thoughts on golf and stuff:

My pal Xan Law has been using a long putter since 1986 and is a devout spokesman for the unorthodox weapon while critics have shaken their heads. After Adam Scott won the Bridgestone recently with a long one, which is widely viewed as a crutch for those afflicted with the yips, Law said, “They’re not laughing at it anymore. After all these years, they’ve stopped laughing.” You might say Scott won one for the yippers.

Hell hath no wrath like that of a scorned caddy.

Ben Hogan said to putt well your fingers must feel thin, and, he said, ginger ale makes your fingers feel thin. Don’t know if he meant to drink it or wash our hands in it. Hogan could play but I don’t think ginger ale was his secret.

Hogan also said the answer is in the dirt. I keep digging up big tufts of it but nothing has revealed itself, except the occasional earthworm.

When TV commentators say that a player hasn’t missed a putt inside 10 feet all week, are they still talking about golf or some game with which I am not familiar?

Some of my favorite memories of golf are of long ago days when Hazel Brown caddied for me every time I played at Carolina Golf Club. He knew my game so well, he would just hand me the club I needed instead of waiting for me to ask for it. I’ve always had a great affection for caddies and none more than Hazel. He died recently but memories of him will stay with me.

I like David Feherty’s description of Phil Mickelson. He said, “The reason he’s so magnetic to fans is that Phil has this beautiful flaw. He’s capable of mercurial brilliance but at any given moment, he can make the kind of mistake a guy sitting at home would.” Like missing short putts, his painful weakness.

People tell me the sand shot is the easiest shot in golf. If that’s the case, then why do we try so hard not to knock a ball in there?

If I were tournament chairman at my club, or any club, I would schedule a day off between rounds in the member-guest tournament to allow contestants to recover from tournament-related social functions where they are frequently over-served and sometimes fall into the band while dancing to “YMCA” with a stranger.

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