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Devil Ball Golf

New golf ball flies straight off the tee … illegally!

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If you're like me, your tee shots have a tendency to shoot into the woods faster than a scalded dog. Fear not, friends, there's a cure for all of us, as the New York Times tells us: a new, only-flies-straight golf ball! There's just one small catch ...

Presenting the Polara Golf Ball, the ball which is guaranteed to fly straight. It does so because of two different pattern of dimples: a shallow set around the ball's equator, and deeper dimples along the poles. The combination of those keeps the ball flying lower and straighter. It's like magic! The price for these super balls is around $30.

But what's the catch? Ah, there's always a catch. The pattern is illegal according to the USGA, so you can't use it in any sanctioned competition in the United States. And while you could use it in your local scramble, you've got to decide whether it's worth getting caught. But the balls fly so straight!

"It's for the other golfers, the ones who rarely hit it straight," says Dave Felker, a Polara executive with experience engineering Callaway golf balls. "It's for people who want to be embarrassed less, play faster and enjoy it more. I respect the USGA, they help identify the best golfers in the world, but what about the rest of us?"

But Dick Rugge, the USGA's technical director, doesn't much care for that line of reasoning. "For the last 15 years, advances in conforming club and ball technologies have made it easier to play," Rugge said. "So we've already had a 15-year experiment on this make-it-easier logic. And what have been the results? Participation has not gone up. So we're not going to dumb it down. You know the easiest way to get the ball in the middle of the fairway? Walk down there and place it with your hand. Who are you kidding?" (Wait, you can do that? Man, that would totally change my game.)

All right, your turn. The Polara sounds wonderful, but is it something you'd use? Do you worry about the USGA-sanctioned equipment, or will you trick up your game with whatever you can get your hands on?

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