In search of Driver Nirvana

Nothing in the world beats the feeling of booming a drive down the middle of the fairway and hearing the ooohh and aaahhhs of your golfing partners. You may then go on to shank and top your next few shots but you are still at one with the world because of that drive. And it was all down to your latest acquisition, that new Big Dog.

So what lead you to your current purchase? Those past few weeks at the course where your game has suffered and you deeply suspected the culprit to be that ancient driver with the worn head cover lying in your bag. The last straw was on the 16th tee, you watched in horror as your tee-shot left the course forever. This pre-historic technology is clearly not cutting the mustard; the grip is worn, the shaft has lost its flex, the loft is out of whack. And handing the money over to your partner Steve is killing you. His game has transformed since he got his new Excalibur with a COR that’s off the Richter scale delivering maximum trampoline effect to his rocket fuelled drives. So your mind is set, it’s time to ‘tech up’.

Yes you drank the KoolAid, you watched those compelling series of ads offering you guaranteed additional yardage and unsurpassed forgiveness. The flames and the smoke, the sound of jet engines taking off as pro after pro smile and nod in slow motion as their drives disappear into another time zone. You have figured that by dropping hundreds of dollars on some titanium, graphite and rubber combo that has been designed by a leading NASA physicist, your golfing prayers will be answered.

You have sold your golfing soul to that brand in the belief that it will transform your game overnight. Their team of engineers have worked endlessly to deliver the secret formula to but a few selected lucky golfers. This innovative technology negates that ‘over the top’ move and dismisses that ‘reverse pivot’ forever. You chuckle to yourself at how unfair it is for everyone else that is not ‘in the know’.

Wandering in off the street to the local golf store in search of the answer you are met by Cory, an underpaid disinterested sales assistant whose real love is skateboarding, but because of staff cuts he’s now in charge of the golf and tennis sections. You tell him you want the latest driver from brand X. He lethargically points you to a rack of demo clubs and you grab an armful of models and head off to the hitting nets.

Cory follows and gets you set up on a simulator with your name (Big Bob) and tells you that you are ‘all set’ to hit. His knowledge of golf has been learned on the Playstation, so in his eyes he’s a certified club-fitter and professional. He hits you with a few buzz words including swingweight and dynamic loft. You can’t let on that you’ve no idea what these actually mean but they sound amazing; you’ve instantly placed all your trust into the palms of his soft white hands.

So, without a hint of a warm up, off you go to whale this thing for the next twenty minutes. You can’t figure out why the ball’s not flying 300 yards and eventually conclude that the machine must be broken. But secretly you are devastated that 175 yards is about as good as it gets. You resolve to hit the gym later that week.

Cory drops by and suggests that your 81mph swing may benefit from a regular rather than an X-flex shaft but your incredulous look sends him scurrying away to assist the elderly Chinese lady at the discount clothing rack. Hell yes I’m an X-Flex, I just haven’t warmed up properly. So after 50-100 hits you tell your ‘inner self’ that this is ‘the one’. It looks good, it sounds good and it will feel terrific on the first tee on Saturday when my partners notice that I’ve dropped a pile on cash on this Bad Boy.
Off you go to the till with a ‘ring it and wrap it’ wisecrack to another totally disinterested check-out assistant. He might whisper “Sir, you’re really going to love this club” to you as he hastily swipes your Visa with a wink and a smile. On you drive home you smile to yourself as you picture just how much your game will improve with this new weapon.

You give the pamphlet that tells you how to adjust this thing a cursory glance before cranking it to the maximum setting to stop your wild slice. You’re now good to go. Ahhh, the smell of that new head cover, the gleam off the crown as you remove the plastic. This thing is now ‘locked and loaded’ and it has instantly become your single most prized possession. It crosses your mind that you should take it to bed with you that night but you know the wife will start asking questions and you will face a series of untruths telling her it only cost 50% of what you actually paid for it.

You are so psyched and can’t wait for Saturday’s round. And when the day comes you will catch at least one drive on the screws that will justify everything. You’ll walk down that fairway like John Wayne! Sure you will hit a few duffs but you’ll tell yourself and anyone else that you will need to ‘bed it in’. And after the ‘honeymoon period’ a few months later, when you hit that same nightmare slice on the dreaded 16th you’ll reach a conclusion.

It’s time for another driver. This PoS is so ‘last month’!