1st Feb 2022 @ 12:52 pm

As golf adopts complex new handicap systems, Paul Kelly of the Las Palmeras Golf Society remembers some wise advice from a 7-year-old.

First published February 1st 2022, in the Gazette Life magazine.

Microsoft’s Windows operating system was first introduced in 1985. Over 29 years later, a lot has changed but some things stay the same, maybe best illustrated by this little tale.

Back then in 1985 I took what many thought at the time to be a foolhardy decision, to very expensively computer network our company, primarily for the benefit of the graphic artists. Being the boss, I felt it necessary to have a keyboard and monitor on my desk but I was basically afraid to turn it on! And in those halcyon days of secretarial support my personal assistant was able to fool everybody that the missives emanating under my name actually came directly from my desk.

Deeply embarrassed at my computer incompetence I purchased a PC “for my daughters” which enabled me to rise at ungodly hours and try to master the electronic monster. One morning I felt a warm breath on my neck, which I was certainly not going to acknowledge, as my daughter Zoe watched in amusement at my labourings and eventually piped up “Dad, what are you trying to do?”

Sheepishly I replied, “I am just trying to figure out how Windows actually does all this stuff.” “Dad, you don’t need to know, it just does.”

And so my fear and trepidation of the monster slowly melted away over the years, to the extent that it is now not unknown for the same daughter to sometimes call me for a fix, when her computer plays up!

This fear of a possible unknown has been stalking the golf community now for some time since the R&A and the USGA, golf ’s governing bodies, decided to launch a World Handicap System. Millions of golfers from 116 countries around the world are now experiencing the benefits of the new system, which is designed to be consistent, inclusive and modern, but like me 30 years ago, millions are also trying to work out how it works. It’s based on a highly complex system of algorithms that the Las Palmeras Golf Society decided to adopt at their recent AGM, and the best advice anyone can take on board as to how it works are my 7-year-old daughter Zoe’s wise words: “It just does”.

The new system has also meant the elimination of the somewhat 20thcentury, maybe even sexist, ladies’ and gents’ separate tees, as we now have different-length courses that, with relevant handicap adjustments, allow for fair competition across all ages, sexes and abilities giving golf quite a head start with other sports as being open to everyone to play together in some competitions.

It’s a pretty giant leap for a game that has had its share of valid criticism for its historic misogynistic ways!

We warmly welcome visitors to play with the Las Palmeras Golf Society any Tuesday or Friday with our first tee time @ 9.30.

Just let us know 24 hours in advance by emailing to lpgs2016@gmail.com, including your World Handicap Index and Licence number.

Or if you would like to join the society you can get more information on our website at: www.laspalmerasgolfsociety.blogspot.com. Costa Teguise Golf Club also continues to have some excellent bulk green fees special offers, available when you enquire in the golf shop.

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