Tag Archives: TaylorMade

One Man’s Opinion (Part 1)

I am a demanding, vociferous and loyal consumer.  If I like a product or service, I let people know about my experience.  That said, if I feel slighted or the product/service does not meet expectations, someone of merit will know what transpired.  I invest in quality, appreciate value and expect performance. 

I will use this BLOG to review my personal experiences with specific companies, products and services.

Part 1

Product or Service




TaylorMade Golf



I have and continue to purchase TaylorMade golf equipment.  Their products are engineered to work for all types of golfers.  Their people are friendly, helpful and passionate about their products.  If something should go wrong, they stand behind their brand in order to ensure complete customer satisfaction.  Mark King is a masterful CEO that has secured my loyalty through constant innovation and premium service.



I was a Comcast Triple Play (phone, internet & cable) customer for years.  While the offering was technically stable, and the content decent, the underlying customer service was consistently horrible.  The people at Comcast just don’t get it.  When I finally ended the relationship and migrated to DirecTV, Comcast made multiple financial offers to try to save me.  Further proof that they did not understand my issues and never tried correct their mistakes when I was actually a subscriber.
Copper Mountain Ski Resort



Organizing skiing for a family of four (with 2 young children) is challenging.  Having Kim Casey (Ski and Ride School Sales Manager) on your side makes the experience a painless one.  Kim’s personality is infectious and she works hard to ensure your time on the mountain is enjoyable. Skiing is EXPENSIVE so when you make the investment, you need positive results.  The Copper instructors are phenomenal and have done a great job teaching my boys how to ski.
Winter Park Ski Resort



After a disappointing first experience at Winter Park, Tom Carey and his team ensured that our next trip to the mountain was an incredible one.  The terrain is varied, and the resort does not attract tourists so lines are moderate.  My kids enjoyed their instructor and we all look forward to future trips to Winter Park.
William Joseph



I own Willy J packs, jackets, waders and tools.  Their products represent quality, durability and great functionality.  When I have technical questions, their service team responds quickly and accurately.  Willy J represents value in a pricey marketplace.
Texas Roadhouse



My family eats at Texas Roadhouse in Parker, CO about twice a month.  The food is good, reasonably priced and the service is great.  We recommend the ribs and fried catfish.  Get there early as the line forms quickly. 

  • Elite Set



I purchased the Elite Set (around $600) about 10 years ago.   The PowerBlock is my primary weight set.  The unit is perfectly engineered, extremely durable and very useful.  I have never had to contact customer service as the product is built to last.



I own 4 iPods, two iPhones and an iPad 2.  I despise the fact that I am dependent on Apple for my music and much of my daily information.   When my iPad and iPhone 4s went haywire weeks after I purchased the products, Apple stepped up and worked diligently to fix my equipment.  My Apple technical contact (Eli Z.) was committed to find a solution.  The Apple Store (Englewood, CO) “Geniuses” were understanding, persistent and talented.  It took 3 trips and multiple calls but my products were eventually repaired.  As an apology, Apple presented me with a gift card.
Fishpond USA

  • Open Range Tech Pack



My first purchase when I started fly fishing 4 years ago, was a Fishpond vest.  While the pack has tremendous functionality, the service I received from the company was poor.  I called the company to find out how to acquire additional inserts for my pack.  My first two calls/messages were ignored.  When I did get someone live, they told me to visit three fishing websites as they could not help me directly.  It took me over a month to purchase the insert.  After investing in Willy  J packs, I sold my Fishpond Open Range Tech Pack on EBay. 
Beretta USA

  • A400 Xplor Light, 12g, K/O
  • AL391 Urika 2, 12g, K/O



I own two Beretta shotguns; A400 Xplor Light 12 gauge as well as a AL391 Urika 2 12 gauge (both with kick off).  In the field, these guns perform flawlessly.  I have knocked down many game birds with these guns, and they have become my only choice in the field.  *That said, when I did call Beretta with questions regarding choke tubes, their service representative was uninformed and impatient.  I wanted to purchase more product and they would not or could not guide me to the appropriate offerings.  This was a really disappointing experience given my significant investment in Beretta products.   

  • SX20 IS



I purchased a Canon SX20 IS from Best Buy in 2011.  This was my initial attempt at moving away from a point and shoot camera.  I experienced issues with the camera from day one, and outlined them for Canon.  There only feedback was to reset the settings on the camera (did not work).  I should have returned the unit to Best Buy instead of counting on Canon to honor the warranty.  The camera has not been used in over a year.
Callaway Golf



There is not a Callaway product in my bag any longer.  TaylorMade accounts for 13 clubs and a Scotty Cameron is my putter choice.  That said, when I have to deal with Callaway customer service in the past, they have been friendly and extremely professional.   I would not hesitate to purchase a Callaway product in the future.
Escort Radar

  • Passport S2



I own five Escort radar detectors and they work great.  That said, when I called the company to order another unit (Passport S3), the sales representative was beyond rude.  Simple questions regarding the product resulted in a crass, sarcastic reply from the employee.  This went on for 5 minutes until I finally ended the conversation because I was so angry.  I have invested over $1,000 in Escort products over the years and was very disappointed in the way I was treated; considering I was calling to purchase another unit.    






Outstanding product and service.  I would buy again.


Good product and/or service.  I would probably again.


Mediocre product and/or service.  Would consider buying again, but would evaluate alternatives in the market. 


Poor product and/or service.  I would not buy again.


Big mistake.



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When Golf Goes Bad

My Reality

One year ago, my handicap was a 7. Today it is a 12, and rapidly moving north. To provide some perspective, I have not been a 12 handicap in over 12 years. I generally float between a 7 and 10, with scores ranging from a 77 on a good day to an 84 on a bad day. For those of you who understand the handicap system, the type of meteoric rise that I am experiencing can only happen if your registered scores far exceeds the published handicap. This means I am not playing to a 12 – it just says that on my Colorado Golf Association GHIN card.

I am not certain where it all went wrong. In 2010, I played pretty well throughout the season. My accomplishments ranged from my first hole-in-one (May 31st, Colorado Golf Club, hole #6, 5 iron, 205 yards) to scoring in the low 70s on two occasions (including 6 birdies in one round). I do not possess an elegant or balanced swing, and generally succeed with a bit of guile and a decent short-game. For years I tried to improve my swing through lessons, practice, swing-aids and more practice. The results are mixed, but the effort and financial investment deserve an A+. In 2010 I was experiencing longer distances throughout all clubs in my bag. I attribute these advances to better equipment (TaylorMade Burner 1.0 Irons and a Ping G-15 Driver), more solid ball contact and of course more confidence.

Until recently, I have not regularly recorded my swing, due to the fact that I do not want to question why a swing as ghastly as mine can occasionally produce decent results. Through multiple lessons in 2011, I concluded that my club is so off plane that making any contact with the ball should be deemed a colossal success. At address, the body club and ball position look fine. As the club rotates back, my hands and shoulders suck the shaft/club head inside. At the top of the swing (which has become disturbingly short), the club face is closed and very flat. On the transition, the club maintains an inside position, while my right elbow flails aimlessly away from my body. For those non-golfers reading this piece, what I have described is not what you should do when attempting to compress a golf ball. The unfortunate result of this uncoordinated move has the golf ball snapping wildly left or ballooning to the right. On the rare occasion when the ball does fly straight, I have no idea what I did to execute the shot.

My Mind

Those who have the patience to play with me these days, tell me that my mind is “mush” and I should stop trying to be “mechanical” and just “swing the club”. Of course my mind is mush; I stand over every shot hoping to get the ball airborne and in the direction of the green. In conjunction with my lack of confidence, I have started to throw clubs and launch into bouts of uncontrollable swearing (turrets has not been diagnosed). Childish temper tantrums resulting from poor execution will not continue, but it sure feels pretty cathartic to toss a 9 iron farther than you have hit your ball. Unfortunately I am in the midst of a deep golf depression. Diagnosing golf depression is easy, here are the symptoms:
 • At the first sign of trouble during the round you say “here we go again”

• After your ball enters a hazard you strongly consider sending your club then the bag in after it

• You apologize to your partner more than 10 times in a round

• Your best friend asks you to play in a member/guest and you have to figure out a really good lie why you can’t join him

• You would rather watch TV with your wife than play golf with your buddies

• You fail to recognize how lucky you are to be outside playing golf with friends

My Pet Peeve

In the August issue of Golf Digest, the cover reads “Get More Distance”, “Pick up 17+ Yards with a New Driver Fitted for you…It gave our guy 44 yards – Wow”. The multiple articles in the magazine stress the importance of upgrading to new technology, and getting properly fitted for golf clubs. Obviously, it is advantageous to swing a club with the most appropriate shaft, loft and length. That said; please do not tell me that a custom fitting will result in a 23% increase in distance. I have played golf for just over 20 years, and there has been some improvement in my length over that timeframe. During a club fitting at a local retailer last year, the cocky sales rep told me that he could “get me hitting the driver 270+.” After cycling through a plethora of drivers, he insisted that a stiff shafted (stock) Ping G-15 was the answer. I told him that I felt more comfortable swinging the regular shafted G-15. “The numbers on the computer don’t lie”, he told with a smug voice. After two days on the range staring at hundreds of balls landing right of target, I returned the club to the store the following Monday. The regular shafted Ping G15 still remains in my bag and I hit it between 235 and 255 yards. If you are still playing the TaylorMade Bubble Burner, I guarantee you will pick up some distance when you upgrade to a club manufactured in the new millennium. As for Golf Digest, I will not be renewing my subscription in 2012.

My Plan

I admit to being anxious when I think about playing golf. I am even more apprehensive about committing to playing in a tournament with a partner; something that I relished not more than one year ago. I try to make it to the range two nights a week in a concerted attempt to try to pull off a golf-swing 180. These are not ball-beating sessions; there is whole-hearted attempt to incorporate professional instruction while mentally simulating game conditions. Yes I will continue to utilize swing aids (Tally MIND set, alignment sticks, Momentus, Swing Glove, Power Angle Pro) to try to put me in the right position and obtain the proper feel. I will also reengage my PGA teaching professional. Other than that, I am not certain what more I can do.

It is not my nature to sulk around looking for sympathy. My wife is praying for Divine Intervention as she is tired of looking at a face full of desperation and angst at the conclusion of every round. Eventually, I will construct a swing that produces the results I expect. Hopefully it is sooner rather than later.


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TaylorMade Rossa Monza Corza Ghost Putter Review

I admit I am a club junkie.  Golf Digest’s “Hot List” along with Golf Magazine’s “Club Test” issues remain in the bedroom throne for months on end.  When the manufacturers head to the range to unveil their new equipment, I ensure my calendar is clear so I have time embrace the tools that promise more distance, accuracy and feel.

Unfortunately golf-addicts cannot buy a better game.  It is ultimately your swing, stroke, balance, confidence and guile that allows for flawless execution of a golf shot – not your equipment.   That said, I believe that you can lever modern technology into making a marginal swing produce above average results.   How do I know that – I personify it.  Never has a more mediocre golf swing produced a better handicap (8).  The best thing about my golf swing is that I try hard.  I truly want to get better as I find the game so extraordinary.

Given my perspective as an average golfer looking to improve, I will occasionally write reviews aboutsome of the equipment I purchase.  Despite the claims by the manufactures,  I do NOT believe that a golfer can put a club in their hand and increase their distance by 15%.  I do NOT believe that a golfer can put a club in their hand and all of a sudden spin a ball like a yoyo.  I do believe however, that a golfer can put a properly fitted club in play and gain the confidence necessary to execute solid golf shots.  The self-assurance obtained will eventually translate to better scores.

TaylorMade Rossa Monza Corza Ghost Putter 

Date Purchased October 22, 2010
Price Paid $110 (EBay, brand new) $160 (retail)
Specifications 34” Mallet
Rounds Played 1
Score/Number of Putts
  • 79 – 24 Putts (including 9 one putts)
Prior Putters
  • YES Olivia (2007)
  • TaylorMade Itsy Bitsy Spider (2008, 2009)
  • Scotty Cameron California Del Mar (2010)
Why I made the Change Actually, I have been putting pretty well with the Scotty Cameron California Del Mar all season.  That said, I was not comfortable with longer distance putts.  Beyond 20 feet, I could not easily create a continuous roll.  Understanding the issue was most probably my technique, I did receive instruction, but could not overcome a perpetual skidding issue.   I evaluated a few mallets, but did not find any of them pleasing to my eye.  The Monza Corza Ghost’s white finish definitely caught my attention.  The concept of a putter color that overtly contrasts the putting surface makes logical sense.   The aiming lines are prominent and very helpful when aligning for a putt.
What the Manufacturer Says TaylorMade‘s goal with the Rossa Corza Ghost Putterwas simple: Design a putter that’s easier to aim than any other. That’s where the white head comes in. Ghost’s “golf-ball white” color complements the white color of the ball, and also stands out easily and beautifully against green grass so you don’t have to strain to see the top-line. That takes the strain off your eyes and promotes a calm and confident state of mind, according to an expert in the field of color perception, who TaylorMade consulted during the development of Ghost. The three black lines on the crown lend further alignment support. The two outer lines are spaced as far apart as the width of a golf ball. Position the ball between those lines when you address your putt — you’ll be amazed at how easy it is to tell where the face is aiming.  The elevated crown merges seamlessly with the top of the putter face, making the top line extremely easy to see.  The circular hole at the rear of the putter head works in union with the three black lines on the crown and the golf ball to create a vivid secondary alignment aid that gives you complete assurance that your aim is true.  Rossa’s renowned AGSI+ (Anti-skid Groove System Insert) promotes forward spin for a smooth roll, while its Titallium construction delivers soft and satisfying feel at impact.Features:

  • Golf ball white finish stands out against green grass
  • Three black, easy-to-see alignment lines
  • Circular hole creates a vivid secondary alignment aid
  • AGSI+ Titallium Insert promotes forward roll
Results First and foremost, I like mallet-style putters. Almost every putter I purchase has a mallet shape.

  • Look: The putter’s off-white finish is unique.  The color is not a distraction and is actually appealing.  The putter is easy to aim as the lines on the crown of the club are inviting during set up.  The hole in the back of the putter, while obvious, is not a distraction.
  • Feel: The AGSI insert is soft and promotes a nice roll….period.  I was able to roll a few putts in from beyond 15 feet.  I was also able to cozy a few 25 footers within 2 feet on greens running at about a 10 on the stimpmeter.  Most importantly, the skidding effect was significantly diminished.  I like the stock Winn grip.  It is tacky and not overly soft.
  • Balance:  I have experienced mallet-style putters that flare open when they are grounded.  The Monza Corza Ghost face sets up square when laying the club behind the ball.
  • Forgiveness: I hit the putter square so often that I cannot tell if the putter is forgiving – more to come as my game deteriorates over the winter. 
Would I Buy it Again
  • Absolutely: I putted better than I have in years.  Every stroke (even when I missed putts), was confident and firm.  It is too bad that my season is almost over.  I will update this review next spring.   


To Choke or not to Choke….That is the Question

left frontal lobe(red) and corpus callosum, di...
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You often hear the phrase when relating to sports; an athlete that fails to deliver in the clutch, analysts (Johnny Miller comes to mind) usually say they “choked”.  Defined further, to “choke” is when someone poorly responds to external pressure.  They do something completely contrary to what they would have done without the weight of the moment.  Preparation usually combats the choking reflex; usually.

There is no situation that puts you to in a better position to choke or excel, than golf.  Standing alone over a little white ball brings all sorts of peculiar emotions to the surface.  The subconscious begins to play tricks on the here and now.  You try desperately to recall positive shots of the recent past, yet negative sensations linger.  The golfer desperately combats fear, uncertainty and doubt with confidence, calmness and routine.  Many times however, one bad shot or two seems to trump all of the great swings of the recent past.  Back to back bad shots seemingly erase past success.  You become a victim of the present situation instead of moving beyond the past.

Yesterday, I watched Dustin Johnson choke away the 2010 U.S. Open.  After a Saturday round that saw Johnson dominate a brutally difficult golf course, he subsequently melted under the white-hot spotlight that shines brightly on the leaders during the final round.  One bad shot seemingly changed his demeanor, and unfortunately lead to more horrendous shots.  Johnson let negative emotions overwhelm him, and dominate his mind.

I just returned from a four day member/guest golf tournament in Michigan that saw me collapse under the pressure of the final day.  Coming into the tournament I was somewhat confident in my swing.  It has been a grueling twelve months of lessons and practice to try find a tempo and swing plane that works.  Lately, I had hit good shots under tournament pressure, so I felt optimistic in what would transpire.  As the days rolled forward my swing started to dissolve.  Drives that would stay in the fairway on day one, drifted to the rough on day two.  By day three and four, those 245 yard drives went out-of-bounds or ended up in treacherous lies.  Truthfully, and somewhat ironically, I actually felt composed over shots….not nervous or ill prepared.  Unfortunately my results (an 89 on day three and a 90 on day four) were emblematic of my poor execution.  Worse yet, I managed to make three doubles and a par on the way into the clubhouse; moving us from first to fourth place (out of the money). 

In my opinion, the only way to overcome the choking reflex is to get back into the heat of the moment and risk failing again.  This is not a comfortable position as thoughts of past failures will most certainly seep into the frontal lobe.  Unfortunately, this is the only way to truly appreciate the sensation of success. 

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The Unrelenting Dilemma of a Nine Handicap

The relentless quest of a manageable, confident golf swing has me perplexed and frustrated right now (as well as pissed off).  The one thing all passionate golfers have in common is the desire to constantly get better.  Practice, unfortunately is not the key to unbridled success…..unless of course what you’re practicing contradicts the thing that forced you to practice in the first place.  It seems that once you “fix” one part of your game, something else breaks.   Last spring, without anything I consciously did, I became one with my game.  Honestly I was hitting the ball 10% farther, while lowering my handicap to a six; it was heaven!   My brush with golf greatness lasted until late June as my game turned ugly, resulting in my handicap soaring to a 9 (mathematically almost impossible to do in 4 months).  A deep golf depression set in as I have yet to work it out. 

Here is the current, maddening issue that I am desperately trying to repair.

  • After completing a semi-hideous backswing, my right elbow detaches from my body, and points towards left field (classic chicken-wing), never to make contact with my right rib again.
  • As I awkwardly return to the ball, my best fly fishing technique takes over and fractures every angle earned during the prior motion.
  • The end result is a forced hand flip at the ball that miraculously gets the Pro V1 airborne.
  • Distance and accuracy are obviously compromised, but it is the consistency that has me vexed. 

I have searched for answers over the last 6 months.  Here is what I have found:

Golf Magazines                        

  • Most of the lessons/tips provided are difficult to understand.  When you do understand the guidance, generally the “move” opposes something from an article from a prior magazine.
  • Magazines shill for their advertisers – the equipment manufacturers.  When they tell me that after a custom fitting, an 18 handicap can now hit his tee ball 30 yards further, I feel like vomiting.

Training Aids  

  • I own every golf training aid produced over the last 15 years (if you do not believe me check my basement).
  • Some have merit…..most just become a short-term paycheck for a washed up tour player/swing guru.
  • I do not remember one training aid having a profound impact on my game….not one?

Your PGA Professional

  • How does the same swing issue result in differing root causes from 10 different instructors?  I demonstrate the same unappealing swing to all of these guys, and each one tells me something different is wrong.
  • Recently, I succumbed to a GolfTEC advertisement, and went in for a consultation ($99).  The instructor was pleasant, candid and insightful –then the lesson ended and the sales pitch began.  He told me that it would take “between 10 and 20 ½ hour lessons in order to fix my swing.” Of course those happened to be the premier instruction packages GolfTEC sells.   After multiple calls, I purchased the 10 pack – I will let you know the results over the next two months.


  • Yes, I will spend thousands on a game in disrepair.  That said, I now realize that anything new from TaylorMade, Callaway, Titleist, Ping etc. only pacifies me until ball contact.  At that point I realize that my reverse Jim Furyk is still solidly intact.   

My dreams about playing in a state amateur event are fading by the day.  I can only hope my persistency pays off so I do not embarrass myself in the two member/guests I play in every year. 

More to come as the season pushes forward. 

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