Saturday, June 19, 2010

I Think The Fact I Can Wax Philosophic About Tiger Woods Is A Testament To My Great Mind. Because I Really Hate Golf.

Not the sport so much. Mostly it's the type of people that play golf that I can't stand to be around. The smug arrogance that comes from being born on third base and being convinced you hit a triple. That's what you see when you look into the eyes of a golfer. Fierce defenders of their unearned privilege. They will never hesitate to lecture you about how ours is a society where people advance on the basis of merit and then do things like this to the most meritorious among them:

Alas, his best was not quite good enough. Shortly after he won the US Amateur Championship for the first time Woods was approached on the driving range by a then club employee who, according to numerous sources, told him he would have to leave because there had been a complaint about an "n word" hitting balls there. "There was no way Tiger was hitting balls into anyone's back garden," says Rogers. "He wasn't a bad enough golfer."

That would be Tiger Woods. Ten years ago Tiger Woods won the US Open by an incredible 15 strokes, a feat that remains one of the great performances in all of sporting history. I don't have to tell you Woods was in a universe of his own on the golf course 10 years ago. I probably do have to tell you that he was made to carry a receipt for anything he bought at the country club where he practiced as a child "because there had been complaints from members." Or that his mother wasn't allowed to bring food to a clubhouse party celebrating one of his tournament wins.

"I used to think they treated him badly because they were pricks but the more I think about it they were probably racists, too" said an article I remembered reading a few years ago but had to comb through the web unbelievably hard to find. Americans don't like to read about ugly truths. We like to imagine a world where people like Tiger Woods are nurtured and recognized for the incredible talent they are instead of being spurned when they offer to let that country club display the trophy from a US Amateur championship.

And then we act baffled when they self destruct. Today Tiger Woods is a walking punch line, he is battling a neck injury, and he faces the real possibility that he will lose custody of his children. A lot of his problems are the result of his own foolish decisions, yes. But I am well aware of how bad karma placed in a child can be the source of foolish decisions when that child turns into an adult.

So are you. Except for one or two of those fuckers you'll find sipping a beer at the clubhouse of your local country club, we've all had bad karma planted in us. No one makes it. No one's happy. Elvis Presley was successful beyond any of our wildest dreams and died fat and in a narcotic haze struggling to take a shit. It makes us feel better about ourselves though, when a public downfall is unexplained. We remember the bad karmic seed within us and think if not for that we would have won our own US Open or made our own gold record and would have handled the ensuing success so much better than that schlep. There was a reason for our foolish decisions we say to ourselves. Tiger Woods, on the other hand, must be an idiot.

Today Tiger Woods shot a 66 and vaulted right into the thick of the hunt for this year's US Open championship. I hate golfers. Which is why I'll be hoping he pulls it off.


Anonymous said...

Can't see the blue links....but still loving your wise words!

Brand said...

"born on third base, convinced you hit a triple" - I love that line. Gonna use it next time I get sucked into a discussion by one of my right-wing coworkers.

Also, the blue links are much more visible, IMO.

AnotherRxTech said...

Adjust your screen's settings, Anonymous...

The illustration of those that are born on third and made to believe they hit a triple is dead on - and I find it among golfers myself. And district managers.

Makes me want to apply the image to those whom we encounter at work that seem to have the opposite problem - they've squandered every opportunity and talent they've been given and still live as though they are owed something by the world.

Maybe they step up to bat and decide since they're already at home plate, they deserve credit for the run.


Anonymous said...

Y'know, it's one thing when a kid overcomes some sort of barrier to become a wild success story, but it's another shade of the same story when a kid tries their darnedest and doesn't become wildly successful, which is only one reason not to enjoy the 'sport'
of golf.

was1 said...

I'm not going to disagree with you too much on this one, DM... But let's not confuse golfers with the country club set. There are millions of us out there who enjoy the sport (yes, anonymous 9:58, it is a sport) but will never be fortunate enough to step onto a real country club course. There are thousands of public and municipal courses out there where everyday working folks struggle to break 100 and live for that one good shot that keeps hope alive.

Don't hate, participate. It's a 2-way street.

Anonymous said...

Gotta disagree with was1. Golf is a huge waste and misuse of resources. How much water is wasted? How much fertilizer ends up in water supplies? How much taxpayer money is wasted subsidising municipal courses? Golf of for losers. Period.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous 2:25
Why such the hate?!? You could apply that to every sport that is played. Who the hell needs multimillion dollar Football, Baseball, and Basketball players. Just think how much good all that money could be used for other things. So tone it down... just because you don't like a sport doesn't make it bad. Or if you really want to condemn people for wasting resources then start applying it to everything we do and believe me, Americans can waste some resources!

Anonymous said...

Sometimes a golf course is the closet we get 'back to nature' albeit a bit of unnatural nature sometimes... . Only problem, exposure to this 'nature' may be limited by possession of golf cart or admittance fee.

Anonymous said...

Funny how this turned into a discussion on golf. I find that most people who don't play golf consider it "elitist", a sport played by rich white folks. While that may be true in some instances, it is also a very liberating game. I play alone often at my country club, early in the morning when there is no one else around. The smell of fresh cut grass is heavy in the air. It is a fantastic experience. I am far away from the pharmacy and the daily grind. For me it is more than a game. It is an escape, a chance to enjoy life and everything good about it. I am free. Those 3 hrs. are priceless. I suggest you try it.

Texas Pharmacy Chica said...

Racism. Implied racism. Alive and well everywhere in the world. And this post is not about golf.

Brings me instead to a funny incident that happened to me and my beloved in the home country of Elin Soon-to-be-not-Woods about 15 years ago. While in transit through Sweden, my hubby got pulled aside by an ARMED guard (this is a country that outlawed toy guns in the 80's!) after getting off a ferry. They were on the look-out for refugees from the former Jugoslavia at the time. Under 6' tall and with dark eyes and dark hair, he looked about as Swedish as Tiger. After verifying his passport, my passport and our marriage license, we got through, but it was scary. Wonder if THAT ever happened to Tiger when visiting Elin's home country???

shady said...

Anonymous 3:46
except soccer - is that why Americans hate it so?

Anonymous said...

I have to agree with Texas Pharmacy Chica on this one.

Sometimes the discrimination is more subtle than denying use of a clubhouse. Tiger was lucky in several respects, in that he was a prodigy at an early age, living and playing against Bob Hope and other entertainers, and that his father was in the military, and his Buddhist influence.

My husband related a story about when he first came to the US, one time the manager of a California country club told him and his friend (another international student) that 'the restaurant was full' when just hours before they'd mowing the grass.