In the Golf for Woman magazine September/October 2005 was an amazing article called “Attack of the Rules Queens” by Sarah Turcotte and I thought finally someone is writing about this subject. The author noted that players who lord the rules over the rest of us can turn a golf round into a horror story. Every club has a rules queen or two and it is a cause of concern and agonizing problem with players. These are usually older seasoned players who love to intimidate newcomers or other players in tournaments with scrutinizing everybody’s shot for a violation of the rules. They are usually ones you want to avoid or have to put up with during play.
These type of woman golfers as so sure they know every rule and love to let everybody know. There are many horror stories from the many different golf courses and club I have played that it would fill a book. I have seen new golfers who had just joined the golf league and end up in tears after a round with them. I have seen older players quite playing in leagues and tournaments because they could not stand being around these players. Rules Queens are everywhere and they seem to be multiplying and causing a loss of many good golfers in our golf clubs.
This article in Golf for Woman talked mostly about tournament play and what happened during play. They were listed as “The Spoiler” “The Schooolmarm” “The Manipulator” and “The Crazed Comptitor”. These sections explained just how they operated as in the Spoiler where the rules queen gave wrong advice. A player’s ball was near a cart path and was told that the ball should be dropped in deep rough when in reality it could have been dropped in the fairway just not closer to the hole.
In the Schoolmarm they acted as director for all, such as ‘don’t tee up in front of the markers’, don’t ground your club in the bunker plus on and on. They feel they are the teacher and all players need to be taught the correct way to play this game. It would get so frustrating that many players refuse to play with them or quite golf.
In the Manipulator is one that gave wrong advice as to make her opponent observe a rule that wasn’t even true. When playing in a tournament and any player is in doubt about a rule try to find an official or play two balls in and then ask about which rule was in play. There are rules queens in every tournament and one hopes they never get paired with her but prepared your self about the rules.
In The Crazed Competitor is one that will go to no end just to win the tournament. It gave an example that when this player was paired against another who had brought her son to accompany them. This was fine until he started checking on everything the other player did, as to not ground her club, proper drop procedure etc. and this player vowed to never play in another tournament if she was entered.
The article then asks how do we deal with the rules queens and give a few suggestions. It states that if you are tournament player know all the rules. In friendly games be nice and verbally recognize that she knows the rules. When others are unset it is wise to get her involved in helping versus being an antagonist. When all else fails organize your own group with your own rules, that they will be thrown out any members if they bring a rules queen with them to play. Another golf instructor added that woman should be out there supporting one another, not picking each other apart and breaking each other down.
This is a big problem in all types of golf course both public and private, we do need to bond together and write more articles like this and write more horror stories. Maybe these people will see themselves and change their ways. That will be the day as I have seen it happen in all of my 50 years of playing golf from Canada down to the Mexican border. I so often have asked myself WHY and have even tried to fight it but have been ganged up on when they gathered their friends around them. Playing a friendly game of golf is a pleasure and we will never become Pro’s but it will keep you healthy, happy and exercised for the rest of your life. Lighten up Rules Queens lets try to encourage our new players, be helpful with teaching about rules not intimidation or flaunting the mistakes. The sky will not fall nor will you be struck by lightening if one rule is overlooked. This game is meant to be enjoyed so just relax and play golf.
Keep this little book handy whenever you play golf it is the golfers Bible.