124th U.S. Open

Pinehurst No. 2


Scar Issue

June 02, 2014

"Nothing brings joy to your buddies like a gash in your new driver."

The thing about that white skid mark on the hood of your driver—I call it "snow on the roof"—is not that it glints like a diamond every time you look down at it. You can deal with that. The big issue is, your buddies will find out.

"Hey, what happened here?"

At that point your job's simple: deny. "It's a demo; that was totally there" or "My kids again." Or, my favorite: "What the hell is that thing? I am so pissed."

You might be able to avoid this pickle altogether. First, stop trying to spit-polish it out. It's not some film rubbing off those cheap balls you're playing. The equipment guys tell me these marks don't happen anymore, the paint jobs are so good, which is b.s. I see drivers with more action on top than on the clubface.

Want my advice? Try a black Sharpie, or find a club-repair shop to fix it. Might cost you $100, but you can come out of hiding.


1. The grounds crew always seems to take a break and watch you hit.

2. You've lined the top edge of your driver with electrical tape. Three layers.


3. You need a Garden Weasel to get some of your tees out of the ground.

4. You've gotten used to the sight of grown men cowering behind golf carts.

5. When squirrels and rabbits spot you, they stop dead and go into DEFCON 1.

Tom Stickney II teaches at Bighorn Golf Club in Palm Desert, Calif., and The Promontory Club in Park City, Utah.