From The Inbox

Floridian embraces golf as brief escape

There’s a pall hanging over the game, reader observes, yet he welcomes the diversion, however fleeting it might be for him

Another gem of an article by Gary Van Sickle (“Holed up while awaiting golf’s ‘new normal’,” April 1).

Indeed, golf never will be the same because of the coronavirus pandemic. While golf here in The Villages, Fla., still is in operation and everyone is driving separately in their own carts, the feel is eerily different. Cups are raised and rakes removed from traps. Golfers still shuffle through them on the way to the green, but I think they feel guiltier than before. The starter shacks, once the center of conversation, now are more somber as golfers arrive just in time and proceed to the tee.

Yes, the term “good shot” is heard occasionally, and mulligans are offered with more regularity. I find myself playing a few holes as a single late in the day. It’s my way of dealing with things.

Sadness can be felt, and people are dying. Golf is just a game, and as some might argue, on life support. But not really. Golf is just a game, played by some to get away from fear and frustration for just a little while.

Paul Vicary
The Villages, Fla.

Marching to a new Drumm beat
We live overlooking the 12th tee at Drumm Farm Golf Club in Independence Mo. We can play with Internet tee times, singles or married couples, in a cart (“Holed up while awaiting golf’s ‘new normal’,” April 1).

The course clerk stays behind a sliding window to confirm we are present and taking a cart, but 6-plus feet away, and no entry into the clubhouse is allowed. Ball washers are covered and flags remain in the hole, with a plug to prevent the ball from going to the bottom of the cup. Tee times are in 16-minute intervals. We can't hit until the group ahead is 250 yards away. Bathrooms, bar and pro shop are closed, but the staff disinfects a cart every time one goes in or out, and we wipe it all over ourselves.

I’m quite happy with that, and our mild winter has allowed us to play some 14 times this year. All in all, it keeps me sane in trying circumstances.

I hope that other states see the mental and physical health benefits and note the extremely minimal risks associated.

Thomas R. Bellmann
Independence, Mo.

2 analysts worth hearing
Thank you, Alex Miceli, for your comments about Brandel Chamblee (“Brandel Chamblee sidesteps PGA’s firing squad,” March 30).

When Chamblee and Mark Rolfing talk, I listen.

Brian Henry
Elgin, Ill.

Golf dice game keeps homebound players from crapping out
Here's the perfect antidote for homebound golfers to get their golf fix: GoLo golf dice game.

I have a daily 3 p.m. tee time with my golf buddy in Chicago (I'm in Boston) via Zoom video conferencing. We play four rounds and then repair to the 19th hole.

We got addicted to GoLo years ago on our golf trips, and now we get to spend 30 minutes together each day, playing a very realistic golf game.

John M. Sullivan
Hull, Mass.
(Sullivan is the strategic account manager for Majesty Golf, a Japan-based manufacturer of golf equipment.)

The final word (maybe)
The golf books listed over the past few days in Morning Read are all excellent choices (“Golf’s major champions of the printed word,” March 31; “From the Morning Read inbox,” April 1).

For what it’s worth, here are a few additional ones which I have enjoyed:

* John Feinstein: Tales From Q School: Inside Golf’s Fifth Major
* Rick Reilly: Who’s your Caddy?
* Rick Reilly: Commander in Cheat: How Golf Explains Trump

Bruce Johnson
Ames, Iowa

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