Unfortunately, golf is the sort of game where, the longer you play it, the harder it gets; especially if you have time to think about swinging, putting, and playing, rather than actually doing it. In my man cave I have six putters that I am currently experimenting with, putting on the carpet. I am also experimenting alternately with a cross-handed grip, looking at the hole, gripping the putter with my regular golf grip, hitting putts like I'm bellying a wedge, hitting putts like I'm hammering an imaginary tack into the back of the ball, trying to putt like Jack Nicklaus... I'm a mess.
The same goes with my full swing. I'm not sure whether I should go back to trying to swing like Jack Nicklaus, or maybe try swinging like Stenson, or maybe even Rickie Fowler--no, I could never swing it like Rickie. I've tried more ways of swinging the club than you could imagine, including Moe Norman's swing. Then I go back to thinking I'll just stick to the swing that seems to come naturally--the swing I make when I close my eyes and just swing the club. When I use it, it generally produces a pretty consistent draw. But that swing makes it difficult to hit a fade. I just can't seem to settle.
And then there's the equipment issue. In my cave I've got my old Snake Eyes blades that once served me pretty well. I've got my Hogan blades that I really like. I've got a set of Titleist DTR irons--but they're a bit offset. I've got the Cleveland irons with the regular shafts that Steve loaned me that seem to work quite nicely. But I've also got a set of Top Flite Tour ladies irons with graphite shafts that feel stiff enough to use and are pleasing to the eye. I've even thought I might give them a whirl. Oh, I also have my father's old set of Cobra senior irons. It's so hard to decide. And then there's my drivers...
Hopefully, by the time I get back out there, I will have managed to convince myself to just get back to trying to practise what I preach, and what I've learned from reading Bobby Jones. Hopefully, I will forget my putting stroke and just focus on trying to get the ball in the hole with a solid strike. Hopefully, I'll get back to just visualizing the strike I need to make to produce the shot I want, and forget about my swing as well. I'll probably use my favourite BullsEye putter, and stay with the clubs I used for most of last year. But there are no guarantees when it comes to golf. Golf is a simple game that guys like me manage to make very complicated.