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9 Fouls to Avoid Committing at the Golf Course

9 Fouls to Avoid Committing at the Golf Course

Hello, reader. For the sake of this article, my name and golf course of employment will remain secret. So let’s say my name is “Mike” and I work at a public golf course in the Twin Cities area. I spent last year as an assistant professional at a course called, lets say, “Average Joe 18 Hole Public Course.” I have since transitioned into another career path, but would like to share a few pieces of advice with you about how to behave when you enter any proshop.

This article will cover 9 fouls: The Front 9. The Back 9 fouls will come at a later date.

Foul #1 – Is it going to rain?

I cannot tell you how many times this was asked to me last year. It gets old really quick. Overcast clouds and thunderstorms are two different things.

Golf course employees are not weathermen. We do not know if is going to rain during your round or not. This day and age everyone can check the radar weather map on their phone. Believe me, you know as much about weather as I do. Check the radar and make your best educated guess.

pro shop stories rain

Foul #2 – Jeans

C’mon, man! Besides the fact that they restrict your movement during the golf swing, they look so terrible on a golf course. I’m not saying you need to buy some fancy white trendy slacks, but go get some Dockers or something. I don’t care how cold it is outside, you are golfing, not doing yard work.

pro shop stories jeans

Foul #3 – Phone Calls

If you chose to call and make a tee time, rather than do it online, that’s just fine. But remember, the phone in a pro shop rings constantly, all day. Make it quick. Know what time you want. If you want something around 11 on Wednesday, ask for 11 on Wednesday. Not something between 10 and 12. Be specific.

pro shop stories phone

Foul #4 – Multiple Trips to the Counter

Take two seconds and think out what you need when you get to the counter. Your credit card should only get swiped one time. ONCE! Do you need tees? Are you going to hit range balls? Need a beverage before you head to the tee? Your card should not be swiped for each one. The most stunning situation is when someone doesn’t know if they are walking or riding. Your playing partner is 50 pounds overweight, you know you’re riding. Grab a cart, and get to the tee.

Foul #5 – Making the Turn is not a Lunch Break

Come on in and get a Snickers and empty your bladder if you must, but keep pace.

Foul #6 – Blaming Women

This was probably my biggest pet peeve last year. It’s 2013. Women can vote, own land, work, and even are allowed on the golf course now.  Every busy weekend day at my course last year, the  pace would get a little slower — no surprise — but men would come in and exclaim, “You better tell that group of old ladies on hole 13 to get moving.” I know probably seems like a safe assumption that the four old ladies that can’t hit it out of their shadow are probably going to shoot about 130 and therefore are a slow group, but I digress. My grandmother is the shortest hitter I know, and has no problem keeping pace with anyone. Why? Club selection is very fast, she pretty much only hits a 3-wood and just keeps moving the ball up the fairway until she can reach the green. She also hasn’t hit a ball in the woods since the Berlin Wall fell. Lets assume the four old ladies playing together are keeping pace just fine, and maybe look at the guys who wait for the green to clear on any short par 4, ’cause they think they can drive the green.

pro shop stories women

Foul #7 – Losing Your Stuff

If you forgot a wedge on the course, someone BEHIND you picked it up. It will not be at the Lost & Found when you get done. Leave your phone number; we will call you if it shows up (and don’t expect it to). And while I’m on the subject, whatever you left behind in the cart was not stolen by the cart valet. If you can afford to golf, you can afford new sunglasses — don’t accuse the cart valet of being a criminal.

pro shop stories lost clubs

Foul #8 – PGA Tour Questions

Right up there with the classic “is it going to rain?” comes the even more constant question “How’s Tiger playing?” Most of the time he isn’t even playing in the tournament, and there are other golfers on Tour. Learn some more players’ names. And no, Phil doesn’t count.

Foul #9 – Clean Your Cart

You don’t have to wash and wax it, but don’t be a slob. What would your mother say if she saw you leave behind a stogie and 12 crushed beer cans? Clean up after yourself a little. Cart valets are mostly high school kids who make about 8 bucks an hour and are just trying to make a small paycheck so they can buy their first car or save for college. If they clean your clubs, tip them. No cash? A couple golf balls will generally cover it as well.

pro shop stories golf cart

Fouls #10-18 – Coming Soon

3 Comments Add a comment

  • Randy on July 5, 2013

    Amen, to all 9 fouls! I hope the “back 9” includes letting faster players play thru.

  • Bill on February 11, 2014

    Never mind that all these situations involve your CUSTOMERS.

    A top golf course would not complain about these issues, but make their paying guests feel welcome.
    Golf course service is pretty lousy these days. Go play a TPC course and see how well you are treated.
    Every course should strive for that level.

    Blog was funny though.

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