‘Mutter’ makes co-ed golf an innovative sport

There are some things that men and women do well together, make babies, dance, keep warm, play bridge and tennis. . .why not play golf’ Lots of men would like for their wives to play golf with them, but very few golfers know how to make it fun for their wives. Even if a beginner gets a full set of expensive clubs and private lessons, she will be playing like a beginner for a long time. . .maybe years. It’s embarrassing to hit a long series of lousy shots while our companions are hitting shots like television golfers. They soon run out of nice things to say about a beginner’s clumsy efforts. Why not have some special rules for beginners’ For a start, let’s quit counting every stroke and count only the shots that fly through the air and land in the fairway. I call these “attaboys”, and the player who makes the most of these wins. An “attaboy” putt should travel the full distance and stop within two feet of the hole. Of course, any putt that goes in the hole is an “attaboy,” and that eliminates the need to define a “gimme” putt. A beginner could easily win this game. From the most forward tees good lady golfers can shoot par. Men might use a 7-iron while women use a 5-iron. Tex Kassen, retired Southwestern University athletic director, enjoys walking the fairways with others. Co-ed pairs should walk together, making it easy to trade clubs for specific shots. If “attaboys” are the only strokes counted, there is no need for “mulligans.” To keep the group moving, we should not allow five minutes to look for a lost ball. A golfer who really wants his wife to enjoy the game must not be stingy about golf balls. He buys the cheapest balls available and lets somebody else pick up the strays. Thirty seconds should be enough time to look for a ball. That should also be long enough to select a club or to plan a putt. Selecting clubs may be a waste of time for a beginner. Unless a ball is hit near the middle of the clubface, it is likely to go almost anywhere and is not likely to score as an “attaboy.” Until a beginner can get consistent results with a 7-iron, the only other club she needs is a putter. “Real” golfers are fussy about playing every ball from wherever it lies. This results in lots of grass being dug up by the clubhead after it strikes the ball. Digging these “divots” is a skill that beginners can put off until they have good control of the clubhead during the swing. They can score more “attaboys” by setting the ball up on a wooden tee for every fairway shot, and they will not be guilty of killing so much grass needlessly. These rules are only suggestions. Remember it’s all for fun, and it’s got to be fun for the lady golfer.

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