Cleveland Classic 1 2009

As far as underrated putters go, this one is probably it. Cleveland? They make putters?

Yes, yes they do. In fact, they made this. I believe at the time, 2009, it was around 69 bucks retail for one of these bad boys. How cheap is that?! Jerry Kelly used it back then, and it was a hit. 69 dollars for a putter that a tour pro was using? Please, please sign me up.

For me, I was fortunate enough that my girlfriend bought this for me as as gift. And what a gift! This putter is ridiculously sleeper. The feel on it is parallel with many Scottys, and I have 4 Scottys. Even with the harshest ball (think range ball), it still maintains a firm, but soft, feel. Feedback is excellent. The face is very nicely milled. Because the putter is so soft, it can get dinged up easily. I take care of my clubs, and the act of putting on and off the headcover, putting it in and out of my bag, etc., have left my putter with really small tiny nicks and stuff. Disappointing, but inevitable. At the end of the day, my putter is in clean condition, and I will never get rid of this thing. I go through drivers, putters, irons, but I will never go through this particular putter. I like taking it out now and then to remind me how good this putter stands up against the best, against 300 dollar Scotty Camerons.

I actually had a Cleveland Classic 2, which was the heel shafted model. Kinda like the Odyssey Phil is using now, but Cleveland, and single-colored. However, I sold it to an online store and regret it to this day. It is hard to find these putters in excellent condition nowadays, which is a shame. In my opinion, the newer line from Cleveland just simply does not stand up to this 2009 line. I honestly have nothing negative to say about this putter, except that it was very underrated, and Cleveland could have done more to spice it up. One of my best and most favorite putters ever. Simply put.

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Graphite Design Tour AD DI-6s

I’ve decided to refocus this blog and make it more golf-centric. At this time, I am mainly using it to track my golf equipment, but I figured, why not write about all the stuff I keep trying? Therefore, I will start (hopefully) writing more about my experiences with various clubs and shafts as I continue to progress in my golf obsession.

Today’s shaft for review will be the infamous Graphite Design Tour AD DI-6s. Note, I do not have any launch monitors, simulators, or numbers. I am a very hands on feel guy who just simply goes by real world driving range/course results. Flame me for that, but it works for me and makes me happy. Anyway, yes, the Tour AD DI. I liked it because it was orange, Tiger used it, and looked great. I had never hit it before I bought one. I am that kind of golfer.

My introduction to the DI was in a Covert Tour 3 wood. The Covert Tour line is advertised as lower spin and launch, so they say, which is perfect for my swing. I tend to balloon my shots, and they may spin in all directions due to my inconsistency. When I had heard that the DI was a high launch and low spin shaft, I knew that this could be a combination that works. Honestly, it did. The Covert Tour head itself is fantastic, but the shaft really puts it all together. My shots are very straight, but while I am hitting it higher (thankfully I can adjust loft on the Covert), it has really helped me put together a more solid off the tee game.

I had the opportunity to try the DI in a Covert Tour driver. With loft set at 9.5*, my limited time on the range proved that I was able to smash the ball very straight. My ball flight was excellent; it didn’t seem to launch it too high, and my swing was on that night. Unfortunately for me, after the 5th or so swing, the shaft snapped in half. Goodbye Tour AD DI…

Because I love the shaft so much, despite my broken one, I picked up yet another shaft to try with my beloved Rocketballz Tour. Previously, I was having fantastic results with the Rocketballz Tour and the Oban Devotion. I was hitting it further and straighter, and I could not have been happier. The Rocketballz Tour is also a low spin and high launch head, which is a good match for the Oban, a low spin low launch shaft. With the DI, the Rocketballz performed similarly. I was hitting it long and straight, and my misses did not have the crazy hooks and slices I would normally have. Needless to say, I am going superficial with this decision and going with the DI, since I believe it looks better with the white Rocketballz head.

In short, the DI is a great shaft. It is indeed as advertised for me, and I took a huge gamble with it by not testing it out before I bought it. Despite having snapped one, it did not sway me from it, and I am glad to have a DI back in my driver line up. While the Oban is indeed a fantastic shaft, I will probably simply hang onto it for when I do break the second one (I hope I really did not jinx myself here ugh).

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Oban Devotion 6 04

I’m going to just go ahead and ignore the fact that I never blog and am extremely behind. That’s okay! Goal of this blog is just to write down random thoughts, and no better time for random thoughts than 8:13 in the morning on a ridiculously hot Thursday in July. Ugh.

To right myself on track, I am now at the part of my golf game where I have a strong interest in a component I used to simply overlook: the shaft. I just love how golf equipment can sound so dirty, pairing stiff shafts to a large head. Yeah. Anyway, so now I have this strong interest in shafts because as we golfers know, it is more the shaft than the head. The shaft, when coupled with the right head, can help you spin the ball more, launch the ball higher, or vice versa. For me, I tend to launch my shots high with a lot of spin. Therefore, it was only natural that I start looking into shafts to help me bring my spin rate down.

I caved earlier this year and bought the Rocketballz driver from TaylorMade, and the commercials were right. I did definitely gain distance from this driver. I first paired it with a Grafalloy Prolaunch Red shaft, and my initial thoughts were positive. I was launching the ball lower, and the trajectory appeared to be what I wanted. However, this shaft just simply played too weak, and my stiff felt like a regular. I then moved on to a Matrix Ozik Code 6.1. I still don’t even know what application the 6.1 came in – people on GolfWRX suggested that it’s a “made for” shaft for certain brands. I don’t know, but I was pretty consistent with this shaft. High launch, medium spin. I thought I was happy. I tried the stock shaft last, a made for TaylorMade Matrix Ozik Xcon 5 in a stiff. That shaft sucks.

Needless to say, I finally found the combination that worked. Along the journey, I actually picked up the Rocketballz Tour – it has a slightly smaller looking head with a much deeper face, allowing me to smash my drives with more confidence. I knew that eventually, I would want to try a “premium” shaft, so I pulled the trigger on an Oban Devotion S 04, which is essentially a stiff. However, it could be tipped, so it could be playing as a stronger stiff. I don’t know, and honestly, the results showed that I just don’t care.

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This shaft has transformed my long game entirely. I can blast the ball however hard I want, and it just wants to go straight. I have gained roughly 20-30 yards and have even driven the ball onto the green on a 300 yard par 4. Given my past behavior, this is certainly eye opening, and frankly, amazing. I have been working hard on my game, and needless to say, technology does indeed make a huge difference. A Rocketballz difference.

While there are still plenty of fish in the sea, and this is only Oban’s low tier offering, I believe that I found the one. I have never hit the ball like this before, and while I can attribute the improvement to my constant practicing, technology has played a role. I am now a believer in choosing the right shaft, and I highly recommend all aspiring golfers to try new things.

Yelp

I realized that it’s been over ONE year since I last wrote in this blog. Kinda sad. I thought I would have the motivation and the time to keep this up. Well, I lie. I do have the time, but not the motivation.

Instead, I found Yelp reviews. I just made Yelp Elite today, and now I have to maintain my status. It’s fun, though, knowing that random people read my reviews. Makes me feel like I contribute to society. That being said, I’ll try to work on blogging more often as well.

Here’s my Yelp profile: http://titleistforged.yelp.com

allergy medications

Ever since I can remember, I have had allergies. It’s funny; I used to spend a good amount of my childhood outsides in the grass and dirt. I would ride my bicycle everywhere, get bullied and made fun of by meaner kids, and just do things most 8-10 year olds do outside during the ’90s. Every year around April and September, my allergies would act up and make my life miserable. This year, I tried to circumvent it by taking Claritin-D early; it kind of worked. I didn’t exhibit any major symptoms for most of March, and my everyday life was pretty normal. No congestion, nothing. Now, April has arrived. The weather got warmer, the trees got greener, and I got sicker.

I have tried all different kinds of allergy medications. I used to do regular Claritin daily; then, I tried Zrytec. When I found out about the more powerful Claritin-D and Zrytec-D, I instantly gave those a try. My good friend Jason recently informed me that Allegra-D has been put out to the general public in the form of an over-the-counter medicine. Off to the supermarket I went.

My allergies have now progressed to the stage of total upper body congestion, and I find breathing to be a difficult activity. I have been doing the nasal decongestant sprays lately at night to help me clear out my nose/sinuses, so that even for just a bit, I can breathe and swallow food/water easily. Today, my sinuses have worsened to the state where walking proves to be difficult, and my ears are filled with so much pressure that blowing my nose makes me want to basically kill myself. A quick Google search showed that Mucinex-D may be the solution to my congestion issues, and when work ended early today due to the Easter weekend holiday, again, off to the supermarket I went.

However, I did not consider the fact, while downing the pill in my car right after buying the medicine, that I had already taken an Allegra-D pill in the morning. Both Allegra-D and the Mucinex run on 12-hour schedule, and I’m fairly certain that 9am was not 12 hours ago. I believe that I am currently running off a double dosage of pseudoephedrine, thus causing my heart rate and blood pressure to be very high. I had wanted to take a nap earlier; I believe the alarming rate at which this entry was typed out is an indication that I may be awake for some time.

As Leonard Hofstadter from The Big Bang Theory so puts it, he is an “enthusiast” when it comes to allergy medications. I feel like I am stepping into his level of expertise, and if anyone is in the market for some pills that can keep you up, try out my combination. Oh yeah, they also help with your sinuses too. Kind of.

pittsburgh and CMU

Last weekend, I had the opportunity to return back to CMU to visit old friends and partake in this year’s Carnival. The amount of fun I had can’t really be expressed in words. I drove there with Jenny on Friday, and upon arrival, we ate at Rose Tea. Funny how while I was back at school, I rarely ate there, and yet it was my first stop this time around. I had one of the special meal combinations, curry chicken over rice, and I truly missed it. Jenny had the pork chop over rice; this is also a delicious combo. Afterwards, we visited Midway to check out the booths, and man did TSA really nail it this year. Winning first place three out of four years really is a sign of a amazing future for TSA booth, and it was definitely an experience I would never forget being part of that three years ago. Walking around campus really brought back feelings of nostalgia and made me remember all the good times I had with my friends and the fun times building and ‘suffering’ through booth.

A lot of us haven’t seen each other in some time, and despite the distance, it still felt like the good old times. During one of our gatherings, I looked at the big group of old friends in front of me and felt sad knowing that such opportunities do not often very happen. After all, a lot of us have graduated and moved to different locations, some even overseas, and such makes reuniting rather difficult. Yet, even for such a short period of time, a good number of us were able to reconvene and bring back some of those good times we used to have. For a short weekend, we were back in college. No worries, just fun to be had.

During my four years in Pittsburgh, I didn’t really explore the city as much as I would have liked. This trip, Jenny and I visited a number of stores that I have never stepped foot in before, and I could honestly kick myself for not visiting Avalon Exchange earlier. I suppose my approach on fashion and other things have changed drastically nowadays, but despite the second-hand nature of the products, Avalon has a plethora of wonderful things to offer. I do plan to return back to Pittsburgh some time in the near future to take the time to visit all the fun places that I never got the chance to before. I used to ‘hate’ being in Pittsburgh back in college; now, I miss the city and would love the opportunity to stay there for a period of time to enjoy everything.

Then again, I suppose being in college itself was a huge factor. Being in college equals doing homework, going to classes, and taking exams. Those factors alone are enough to deter someone, especially me, from thinking too highly of the surrounding environment. That being said, now that I am out of the academic world (for the time being), I can truly enjoy Pittsburgh and what it has to offer. After all, Pittsburgh does have the number two most scenic view in America.

View from Mt. Washington - 2nd most scenic view. This isnt quite the right angle.

I had a lot of fun last weekend, and as Stacy so puts it, a lot of us are going through “withdrawal.” Deep inside, I know that my group of friends from college will always be close to me, and I will never forget all the things we went through together. Some things never change after all, and I am glad my friends are still my friends. I definitely changed as a person for the better as college progressed, and I can only thank all of you guys for helping me become who I am now.

Pittsburgh, I definitely missed you.

my ocd tendencies

While I do not possess true obsessive compulsive behaviors, I do from time to time exhibit quite a lot of OCD-like tendencies. Most of my tendencies have started from when I was a young child; I would organize and sort my toy cars by size and color, and I would always have some sort of organizational pattern as to which car I would play with next. My hobbies now have progressed beyond toy cars; when I first started to play golf, my OCD tendencies would manifest themselves once again. As a newcomer to the world of golf back in the eighth grade, I would be constantly frustrated by my lack of understanding and inability to hit the ball well. Thus, my practice routines were rather methodical in the hopes of improving rapidly. I usually hit a bucket of balls: I would dedicate a certain number of balls for each club, making sure each club was used equally. Then, I would finish up practice on the putting green, and I would have to hit a certain number of putts before I was satisfied. Granted, I may not approach practice the same way now as I did then, but it sure was an indication of some of my OCD tendencies.

Lately, a huge OCD tendency of mine revolves around my iPhone. All of my apps have to be sorted by category in their respective folders, and they must not be on the first home screen. I usually only have two home screens: the first one is all of the stock Apple apps that I use frequently (such as calendar, calculator, maps, clock, etc). The second home screen would consist of all the folders of my extra apps. The folders must always be in the same location; I tried moving some icons around before, and only minutes later, I would revert back to the original layout. I just don’t feel right seeing them in different spots. Occasionally, I would move all my games to the third home screen. Strangely, this doesn’t bother me in the least.

Also, all of the music on my iPhone are labeled to the dot and contain their respective album art. This way, I can use Cover Flow to decide what I want to listen to. I typically only allow myself to have 1 or 2 singles; currently, they are Dr. Dre’s I Need a Doctor and Rebecca Black’s Friday (yes, I know. I will remove it very soon). The rest of the songs are all albums. This attention to detail started back in high school when I received my first mp3 player as a gift. I wanted all my songs nicely labeled and organized, and I would spend hours renaming and sorting everything. As I keep saying to myself, I suppose some things just never change.

I love seeing the album art.