Speaking of: ... Tea ...

Published on   2023-06-22 by Kai

I am a coffee drinker. Without the strong black brew, the start of the day does not work. So the first thing I do when I wake up is go to the coffee machine. It preheats while I disappear into the bathroom. And after that, at the push of a button, there's the sound that announces to me that my spirits are about to be awakened: The machine grinds and brews. And spits out the coffee just the way I like it, fresh and hot. Add a little milk, and with a hearty sip, the day can begin.

Tea drinkers are therefore actually a little suspect to me. The whole procedure, which for me the machine takes over with the coffee, that must bring the Teeist itself over the stage: Boil water, provide the intoxicant of choice in the form of dried and chopped leaves. Bring everything together, and then note the time it takes for the tea to steep, to be strong but not soporific. All of this leaves me wondering. I couldn't do this in the early morning.

"Tea time" suggested.

My corrective program, on the other hand, seems to like tea, especially in foreign-language British form (incidentally, just like my golf course coach Nick, who, I stressed, doesn't enter the golf course without a well-filled teacup). The other day, I wrote something terse and anglicized about the tee time, i.e. the time of the first tee shot of the golf round, which you usually have to book on the course of your choice. And the electronics thought I was making a mistake and suggested "tea time". This was not at all about the British cultural contribution to human togetherness, which is celebrated daily at 5 p.m., as is well known, at least on the islands of the Empire.

I was actually referring to tea (pronounced "Ti"), and I'm sure every golfer knew immediately what I was talking about. Namely, that little aid that virtually bucks the ball and makes it possible to hit the small ball in the upward motion when teeing off with the driver. Without a tee, the driver can be safely left in the bag.

Some info

But while we're on the subject, here's some more info on the little helper: Tees are usually about the shape of a nail, pointed at the bottom and wide at the top. They are provided with a small indentation at the head, on which the ball is to be placed and which is supposed to protect against rolling down (but only if the tee is also put into the ground rather straight, i.e. vertically).

They are mainly made of wood or plastic. I prefer the plastic ones, because they last much longer. So it's pure economy, otherwise they don't have any advantages over their wooden siblings, which like to break on impact. Incidentally, this is also the reason why on the teeing grounds there is always a large ball on one side and an open cone on the other to mark the line of the tee. The cones are small trash cans into which broken tees can be disposed of.

Advantage and disadvantage

By the way, the "unbreakability" of the plastic tees also has a disadvantage: in the worst case, it can impair the shot at impact, as it acts like an obstacle and - especially with hard ground and a long tee - slows down the swing somewhat. Beginners will certainly not notice this. Professionals, on the other hand, will, at least that's what I've been told. Wooden tees also have a better reputation compared to this, as supposedly more environmentally friendly. This can be somewhat in doubt, they are mostly painted and printed, which is certainly not good for the environment. Especially not when a tee ends up in the trash after every tee shot.

But this is not meant to be a discussion of principle. Everyone can decide for themselves which tee to use. And regardless of whether it is wood or plastic, there are differences in the length. Long tees are - as already emphasized - for driver tees. Short tees are more suitable for iron shots, as the ball does not have to be placed so high above the ground, or may be, otherwise you will quickly miss and the ball will start upwards instead of forwards. If at all.

Three subtypes

In addition, there are at least three (if the industry hasn't invented something new again) types of tees: those with steps, which ensure that the ball is always placed at the same distance from the ground, those with brushes as ball holders, where the possible influence on the swing described above is minimized, and those that don't look like a tee, but rather like a small and flat cone without a tip. They are not stuck into the ground, but simply laid on, and can be the tool of choice for very hard ground, such as in the dry midsummer or ground frost in the cold season.

Whatever tee you reach for, these little things are ultimately just an aid to teeing off. And if you are not a professional, you can, in my opinion, confidently let sympathy decide on color, shape and material. But wait, again I have to mention a restriction: There are golf clubs that impose a tee-up requirement in fall and winter to preserve fairways. Then every shot - with the exception of putts - must be made from the tee. However, I don't believe that this influences the purchase decision or the selection of the preferred tees.

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