Bunker Mulligan "Let us endeavor so to live that when we come to die even the undertaker will be sorry." ~Mark Twain

May 5, 2005

Long Knockers

Filed under: Golf — Bunker @ 6:45 am

I don’t enjoy playing golf with guys who hit the ball a long way. It is impressive to see the ball launched off the driver face, and the long carry is pretty special. Seeing someone hit a ball a long way is fascinating.

Their demeanor usually isn’t. I don’t put all long knockers in that category, but the average weekend big hitter is annoying. He acts as if none of the rest of us saw him hit. “I ripped that one!” Yes, you did.

They talk constantly about how far they hit the ball. And they are always interested in what club you hit on a shot. Well, not really. What they really want is the opportunity to tell you what club they used.

“What club did you hit?” he asks in false curiosity.


“Yeah. I tried to ease up on that 8-iron. I was afraid I’d fly the green. So I end up hitting it fat. Shoulda got to the green easy.”

I nod my head. Yes. You should have.

One popular saying in golf is that the scorcard doesn’t track style points. One of my regular group, well into his eighties, got an eagle last weekend. He hit a 7-wood from 100 yards and the ball bounced into the hole. Score a 2 on a 4-par, no style points. Where the ball finishes is more important than how it got there. The scorecard doesn’t care whether you hit a driver or a 3-iron off that tee. All it cares about is the number you write down when you finish the hole.

But for some players, hitting the ball a long way is all that matters.

In my younger days, I hit my laminated maple driver 275-300 yards regularly. I understand the psychology. I also seldom knew how far right it would end up. Now, I hit my titanium-faced driver 250-275 yards–sometimes more, often less. But I usually know where it will end up when it stops rolling.

And when I occasionally still put one out there over 300 yards, I simply say–under my breath, “Damn. Nice shot.”


  1. I play with a guy who is a bomber. I can usually stay within 10-15 yards of him. When I’m “on” I can knock it as far and occasionally farther. Even though he knocks it farther than me, my iron game and putting are much more solid than his. That equalizes our matches or gives me a slight advantage.

    Comment by mediaguru @ http://www.hookedongolfblog.com — May 5, 2005 @ 8:40 am

  2. I’m glad there are no style points, because they’d make me give up my clubs. I have an even uglier swing after over 16 months off the links, but it seems to be straighter. Two rounds under 85 and I’m loving life.

    Comment by Slice — May 5, 2005 @ 2:51 pm

  3. Bunker,

    I have to confess: I’m really no golf fan. I don’t have the patience.

    But for a lot of years, before Dad’s heart attack, the sons and the son-in-law would take him out for 18 on Father’s Day. And I did it, because it was the thing to do that day.

    And I have to tell you: the only thing that made that embarassing spectacle tolerable for me was the long shots. I got no skills, and I got no style; but at least once, and maybe as many as three holes per game, I would find the sweet spot. And that ball would flyyyyyyyyyyyy! No hook or slice, just tee to green (or darn close) in one shot. And yes, I would be pleased about it. It made up just a little bit for those nine putts and all those balls lost in the woods.

    Now if only I had the foggiest clue how I did it…

    Comment by UML Guy — May 5, 2005 @ 3:31 pm

  4. Its not how you drive, Its how you arrive.

    Comment by jerry — May 5, 2005 @ 7:17 pm

  5. Well now you do have a since of humor. I barely made it through the title. I guess itโ€™s a Friday and I am just too easily amused.

    Comment by dave — May 6, 2005 @ 4:42 pm

  6. I get no points for style, and the score is not worth counting most days ๐Ÿ˜‰ But I enjoy myself, and my hubby’s company – that’s all that matters!

    Comment by Barb — May 9, 2005 @ 10:21 pm

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