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Golfers need not yell fore while they play round of 3-club

November 16, 2008|By TONY MULIERI

On our last Thursday night of golf for the season before the clocks changed, I got a phone call early in the day telling me it would be three-club night.

Three-club night? Are we going to hit three nightclubs after we play?

No.

On three-club night, you can use only three golf clubs. Period.

Usually, you are allowed to have up to 14 clubs in your bag for a round of golf. So picking three clubs to play with is a mind-bender.

You don't even need your bag, although I sheepishly wheeled my pullcart around the course as the three clubs clanged against one another in the black hole, missing their brothers in swing.

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I got the phone call early enough that I had time to think about it.

Playing with three clubs is like trying to write this column using only the right side of the keyboard.

We were about to play the front nine at Black Rock Golf Course. That's our home course, so we know it pretty well.

I decided I would take my putter, 7-iron and 3-metal.

As it turned out, I could have left my putter at home. I three-putted three times, so my strategy failed on the greens. I could have just as easily brought my ball retriever or golf umbrella to putt with, as poorly as I putted.

Playing with three clubs is like playing a game of chess without the pawns.

One of the guys I play with, I'll call him Todd, brought his driver to putt with. Another guy, I'll call him Larry, putted with his 2-iron, which has a flat face like a putter.

That was smart.

And one other fellow, I'll call him Don, putted with one of his hybrid clubs. He was hitting the heck out of that ball, but he was on the green at the time.

The things golfers put themselves through. The game is hard enough having all of the clubs in your bag, much less limiting yourself to three.

But it was all in fun, right?

Playing with three clubs is like playing Scrabble with half the vowels.

As it turned out, you could bring as many golf balls as you needed, which was a good rule, since I lost about four in nine holes.

Playing with three clubs is like eating a spaghetti dinner without a fork.

One of the guys, I'll call him Mike, played about as well with three clubs as he does with 14. But he usually is one of the best golfers in our group, no matter how many clubs he brings.

Playing with three clubs is like text messaging while wearing work gloves.

In the end, our scores were higher than usual, but not that much, which might mean all those other clubs are a bit overrated. I shot a 51 for nine holes, which I've done before with all of my clubs in my bag.

Playing with three clubs is like bowling tenpins with a ball without holes.

You get the idea.

The next time we have three-club night, I think I'll hit the three nightclubs instead.

Tony Mulieri is community editor of The Herald-Mail. He can be reached by calling 301-733-5131, ext. 7647, or by e-mail at

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