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Justin_Hanrahan

Can CGA fans enjoy a round of golf?
« on: April 07, 2003, 08:05:32 PM »
Folks, this is not a faecetious question...bear with me.

Can all of you guys, with such a love of golf course architecture and an understanding of its history simply go out and visit a course and have fun shooting 72, 85 or 102?

I spenty a few years working in golf course construction and when the boss got around to inviting a few guys out for a hit the shapers invariably were left behind 'cos all they did was go out and critique the course, its bumps and hollows and tell all and sundry how they could have done a better job themselves. They were no fun out there because they couldn't love golf for what it is...a game of hitting a little white ball.

Even now, years after I stopped working in the field, I periodically find myself mumbling about how much better a hole/course could be if they only let me at it...

Am I the only one who struggles with this from time to time? It just seems a pertinent question at a time when most discussion here seems to revolve around rankings and prestige...

(I would love to hear from some of the architects who frequent the site)
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by 1056376800 »

Tommy_Naccarato

Re: Can CGA fans enjoy a round of golf?
« Reply #1 on: April 07, 2003, 10:07:01 PM »
Justin,
My cousin accuses me all of the time of not being able to enjoy the game of golf anymore, because I'm constantly talking about golf architecture. I coudn't disagree more.

The fact is that I love playing obscure courses just as much as I do named ones, and I find a lot of positive things about them. For one, the obscure course usually serves its purpose well, and in many cases could serve it even better.

I havea little course not far from me in Downey, that is just a kick to play. It's got these potatochip-shaped greens, and hardly anyone understands that you can play a Great round on it, not just by hitting the greens in regulation, but by having a trememdnous short game to go along with the greens that are there. It's wall to wall bermuda and kikuya, and the greens while not always fast, are perfect for the really fun slopes that are a challenge. Even some of the bunekrs have evolved quite nicely, and there isn't a person there that understands why. I'm happy for that! The place reminds me of a Ross muni course, only it is a Ron Reagle or some name like that that designed it in the 60's. The guy knew what he was doing!

Another course near me is an old Billy Bell course called Willowick, which has so much quirk to it, and is also a kick to play. I recently put a question to Matt Ward, asling him if he could ever stomach playing a course like it. Seriously, he would use driver on about four holes. He said he doubted it.I'll play Willowick anytime!
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by 1056376800 »

David_Elvins

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Can CGA fans enjoy a round of golf?
« Reply #2 on: April 08, 2003, 12:57:42 AM »
Justin,

I think the distraction of an interest in architecture allows one to not take his score too seriously all the time.  I think people who are caught up in their game and their score are the ones who don't seem to get any enjoyment out of a round of golf.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by 1056376800 »
Ask not what GolfClubAtlas can do for you; ask what you can do for GolfClubAtlas.

ForkaB

Re: Can CGA fans enjoy a round of golf?
« Reply #3 on: April 08, 2003, 01:49:15 AM »
David

I've played with a number of real GCA afficionados, and I cannot think of one that was not playing for a "score" on each and every shot that they hit--even TE Paul and Gib Papazian, for each of whom a shot one degree off line constitutes an overwhelmingly unexpected and exciting adventure.

That being said, p(l)aying in the presence of such students of the "art" of GCA is an uplifting one, and lesser men such as I do nothing but learn from the process.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by 1056376800 »

TEPaul

Re: Can CGA fans enjoy a round of golf?
« Reply #4 on: April 08, 2003, 04:39:05 AM »
I certainly enjoy playing but one time I was playing with Kye Goalby and we got so into the architecture of one green we realized our golf balls were about 150 yards back in the fairway.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by 1056376800 »

RT

Re: Can CGA fans enjoy a round of golf?
« Reply #5 on: April 08, 2003, 04:44:47 AM »
Was that fairway for the same green you 2 chaps were admiring?

If not then you're really wired for sound. :)
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by 1056376800 »

Steve_L.

Re: Can CGA fans enjoy a round of golf?
« Reply #6 on: April 08, 2003, 06:15:24 AM »
I think appreciation of a golf course enhances one's enjoyment of golf.  At least it's a nice diversion from that 102 you were talking about!
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by 1056376800 »

Mike_Cirba

Re: Can CGA fans enjoy a round of golf?
« Reply #7 on: April 08, 2003, 06:26:48 AM »
No, I hate to play anymore.   8)

If I can't hit great shots and score in the low 70s, then what's the point, even with all of God's green world around me in a beautiful setting, made even more interesting as prepared for the game by man.  

Seriously, I used to be the type of low-handicapper (believe it or not) years ago who would be burning around the ears if I did not play to my expectations....not much fun, I assure you.

These days, and for the past 10 years or so, I have taken up the mantra expressed best by Shivas, who says;

"The game is soooo much more fun now that I suck."  

I think what he means is that he is now pleased with the occasional great shot, happy when he scraps it around reasonably, and doesn't get particularly threatened or down when those pesky mishits occur.  

That way, the focus is on the course, on the outdoors, on the companionship, and it's a hell of a lot more relaxing!  :)
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by 1056376800 »

Peter Galea

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Can CGA fans enjoy a round of golf?
« Reply #8 on: April 08, 2003, 06:55:49 AM »
Absolutley have fun. If you shoot ninety, and take a minute to analyze and execute each shot, that leaves you at least another hour and a half to analyze the course.:)
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by 1056376800 »
"chief sherpa"

Norbert P

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Can CGA fans enjoy a round of golf?
« Reply #9 on: April 28, 2003, 09:42:57 AM »
 Being a GCA nerd makes me explore more and that makes golf interesting and enjoyable.  Along with the great fellows met, I've more experiences to appreciate the game and its possibilities.

 "Mammaries! Misty water color mammaries! Of the way we were."  Babs Streisand  (Indignant misquote)
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by 1056376800 »
"Golf is only meant to be a small part of oneís life, centering around health, relaxation and having fun with friends/family." R"C"M

Bob_Huntley

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Can CGA fans enjoy a round of golf?
« Reply #10 on: April 28, 2003, 10:46:16 AM »
When I first joined this forum, I mentioned in a thread that I felt that a number of contributors reminded me  of the definition of  a gourmet, "A person who never enjoys a meal."

There was always some carping about this, that or another bunker shape or green slope.  Having met and played with a goodly number of GCA'ers I now see that I was wrong. They were pointing out, objectively, what they saw as design flaws. I learned a lot.

No matter where or what course I've played I seemed to have had fun, however, in my dotage I would much rather go to the dentist that play Tehama or Rancho Canada here in Carmel Valley.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by 1056376800 »

DMoriarty

Re: Can CGA fans enjoy a round of golf?
« Reply #11 on: April 28, 2003, 11:06:37 AM »
Mr. Huntley is correct. †Most of the GCA'ers I have played with seem to really enjoy playing. †Much more so than golfers who are overly infatuated with scoring. †Those are no fun whether they are on (too serious) or off (too angry.) †Think of the looking around and checking out architecture as stopping and smelling the roses. † †

It does make it hard to repeatedly play certain courses, though. †The first time can provide comedy relief, but from the second on it is just trajedy. †
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by 1056376800 »

Andy_Lipschultz

Re: Can CGA fans enjoy a round of golf?
« Reply #12 on: April 28, 2003, 11:38:12 AM »
I had a conversation with Tommy N. the other night and we were talking about various courses in the L.A. area we both have played. [To digress: I have a keen interest as oppposed to an extensive knowledge of golf architecture, so my talks with Tommy are more pedagogical in nature--obviously, me doing the listening].

Anyway, I told him that I've had more good times at Penmar golf course, a 2600-yard 9-holer built on old swamp land in Venice. The greens run a wee bit slower than the fairways at Rustic (going up canyon) and the main excitement there is speculating if any planes taking off from nearby Santa Monica Airport will be making an emergency landing on the 6th fairway.

If I'm playing with friends or meeting interesting new folks out on the course, that's all that really matters.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by 1056376800 »

Tiger_Bernhardt

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Can CGA fans enjoy a round of golf?
« Reply #13 on: April 28, 2003, 12:19:40 PM »
I agree with most of the guys here in that the love of architecture makes the round more fun. The opportunity to meet men such the ones posting before me here have been a pleasure and provided memories that will stay with me thoroughout life. I qualified for our State Amateur today on a course that most would give a 1 to on the Doak scale. Yet, the course broken down had a number of very good golf holes and features. I had three college golfers in my group that failed to properly play a false front and two of them bogied the hole from 100 out.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by 1056376800 »

THuckaby2

Re: Can CGA fans enjoy a round of golf?
« Reply #14 on: April 28, 2003, 12:27:39 PM »
Fantastic!  Score one for the chronologically-advanced non-flatbellies!  Way to go Tiger JB - you remain a hero to us all!  ;D ;D

Re the topic at hand, well... some of the die-est of diehards here have said they can't/don't get as much enjoyment playing the game now that they are SO into the architecture study, and god love 'em for it. It seems pretty obvious to me that the playing of the game is always gonna be the main thing... but to each his own!

One thing's for sure, like the other people posting in this thread, an interest in this whole architecture thing lead me to meeting lots of great people and having lots of very fun golf rounds and learning mucho... so viva la arcitectura!  ;)

TH
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by 1056376800 »

Scott_Burroughs

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Can CGA fans enjoy a round of golf?
« Reply #15 on: April 28, 2003, 12:39:38 PM »
GCA's biggest influences on me are enjoying it more, despite playing worse. †How often does that happen? †My handicap is at it's highest point in 5-6 years.

Only downside is not being eligible for state am events since handicap went up.



No stiffs to play with on this board.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:04 PM by -1 »

Tim_Weiman

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Can CGA fans enjoy a round of golf?
« Reply #16 on: April 28, 2003, 01:16:52 PM »
Justin,

Like Tommy Naccarato, I have friends who think I focus too much on architecture and not enough on just playing. To that I plead "somewhat guilty".

I do think there is a big difference between playing golf and studying the architecture. When it comes to playing golf, I really donít care that much about the quality of the golf course. I can be perfectly happy playing an average course, the kind we would never talk about here.

Studying golf architecture is a different matter. †It involves spending a lot more time focusing on details of the golf course than worrying about such things as club selection or how you are going to play your next shot. So, quite often Iíd prefer to just walk the course if it is a venue that offers something special architecturally and I havenít seen it before.

But, I know very few people who would go well out of their way just to walk a course. Whatís more, I may not even have a handful of friends who would be happy just going out to look at raw land and imaging the possibilities of building a course. Funny thing, doing just that was probably the best golf experience Iíve had in the past six months.


« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by 1056376800 »
Tim Weiman

Justin_Hanrahan

Re: Can CGA fans enjoy a round of golf?
« Reply #17 on: April 28, 2003, 10:42:39 PM »
Tim, I can relate to your observation about studying bare land. My wife has seen me staring (apparently) blankly out the car window often enough to know when I am picturing how good a certain piece of land could be for golf.

Funny thing is that I often find that my perfect piece of land for golf is also perfect for many other things. e.g. an amazing view of the coast or a summer/spring/autumn/winter walk, the perfect holiday retreat or even just to location to suck in some clean air...amazing how similar a golf architecture fiend and a non-golfer can look at the same piece of land and enjoy it...

Maybe this is the secret to it all!
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by 1056376800 »

Tiger_Bernhardt

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Can CGA fans enjoy a round of golf?
« Reply #18 on: April 29, 2003, 07:07:27 AM »
Thanks Tom, I actually did not finish my thought because the phone rang and well business got in the way of golf. I have always understood and noted different features on a course. Yet, GCA has led me to view them from a deeper and more appreciative point of view. Now, I tend to watch how others address things and enjoy the course, the art and architecture almost as much as the golf.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by 1056376800 »

Patrick_Mucci_Jr

Re: Can CGA fans enjoy a round of golf?
« Reply #19 on: April 29, 2003, 07:29:20 AM »
Shivas,
Quote
there is no way in hell that I would have played in the qualifier for the CDGA Mid-Am at Silver Lakes in south suburban Somewhere, Illinois, which I'm sure Paul Richards can attest, is 5 hours of pure pain.

I think I see the problem, an aversion to pain.
That's a big mistake, the same mistake many make.
You have to begin to enjoy pain, and more importantly to enjoy the pain that others are feeling while playing the course.  You have to decide, to mentally LOVE this course, knowing that all others hate it.  That new found LOVE will prepare you to face the vicissitudes of the golf course.

Think positive.

When it rains and others are complaining about the rain, see the rain, love the rain, be the rain. (except if you wear glasses)  ;D
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by 1056376800 »

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