Thursday, October 11, 2007

The Great Golfing God

In the beginning there was chaos. And God saw the chaos and said "Handest thou me my Pitching Wedge."
Thus begins the First Book of Golf (Chapter 1, Verse 1), a little known book of scripture found with the rest of the Dead Sea Scrolls, which discusses the greatness of golf and its divine origins. It also teaches that it's better to play long uphill greens short, that hybrid clubs are for sissies, and that real men don't use carts.

Or at least that's the translation I read.

Now I have mixed feelings on golf. On the one hand it was invented by either Scotsmen or Hobbits (The difference between the two being about four inches if my genetics are any measure). This means that the game is not crap and best played after drinking a bottle of 199 proof alcohol and eating a plate of fried sheep entrails.

On the other hand its harder to find a more bourgeois activity outside of polo than golf. An average round of golf probably costs about $120 for 18 holes. This doesn't include the cost of time (about 4 to 5 hours), and equipment (a craptacular set of clubs will cost about $150 and an, over the top unless you're Tiger Woods, set will cost you a gazillion dollars). The sheer economics of this leads me to conclude that despite it being Scottish, golf isn't the greatest game in the world. The fact that I'm a horrible golfer in no way affects my esteem of the game.

And yet, thus far in 2007 I have been out on the links twice as many times as I'd been the rest of my life. This sounds impressive until you realize that means I've been out twice thus far this year.

Now before I get into my current golfing expertise let me flash you back to 2002. The place is Sandy, Utah. My new company, and first job out of college, held an annual golf outing. I was the low man in the corporate latrine and decided that I needed to join in this outing to prove my worth (and hopefully maneuver myself out of the corporate latrine altogether. I didn't realize that all of corporate life was a process of being schmeared in the excrement of your executive overlords).

As there were two of us with no golf experience they wisely teamed us together and put us at the earliest tee time. That's the good news, the bad news was that standing behind us at the tee box was my direct manager, the CFO, CIO, and CEO of the company. Remember I had zero golf experience of the non-mini variety at this point. So with much trepidation, I approached the tee like a farmhand fertilizing his first mare. I lined up my shot with my borrowed clubs, and swung away.


And the ball sailed, let us say a Woodsian 350 yards right down the middle of the fairway. It was a good shot for an experienced player and a miraculous one for a golf-virgin like myself. The upper management congratulated me appropriately, obviously impressed with my novice skills. I found my ball ironed it over the water hazard out of sight of the bosses and proceeded to suck it up (out of sight of them fortunately) the rest of the day. Posting a decently respectable 117 on a par 72.

What's sad about this story was that was the best drive, moment, and score in my golfing career. Everything since then has been down hill.

Which brings us to ponder why I've insisted on going golfing twice in the past three months. Is it my desire to emulate the upper crust of society? Or am I planning on going to med school soon and realized this was a necessary skill for a doctor to have? Or am I just simply trying to improve my capacity for future networking? No, nyet, and non. I simply enjoy hitting round stationary objects with a metal club. It's a good non-hommecidal stress reliever after dealing with the teenagers from the youth group at church.

That said I'd like to get my score below a 190 again someday.

Here's another video one of my new favorite French songs, Face a la Mer. I know most of you won't watch it but at least this way I don't forget that I like it. Plus how can you not like French rap?

Now playing: Suede - Metal Mickey
via FoxyTunes


Wife of dastew said...

I didn't watch the video but I know that I already like it. Mmmm, Calogero...

Panini said...

That's a beautiful picture . . . but turf and trees are about the only thing in golf that touch my soul. :)

Paris Soul Mate said...

I hate golf...but glad I trudged through the topic to hit the Face a la Mer video. I hear it on the radio all the time and L-O-V-E, love it!

Coops said...

For me golf is played by rich snobs or old people (someting I decided when I was 'sent away' to boarding school). It was something I never wanted anything to do with! Seeing as I do not think you are a 'rich snob' - it moves you very close to a dangerous category if you choose to continue in it's madness! Even now, I have refused to go anywhere near the (I now do not know what to call it, as to me it is NOT a 'sport') 'thing' despite the supposed importance in 'networking', or even business meetings. I hope never to sink so low in my business aspirations that I have to play a round of golf - If I do it will mean that I have truly sold my soul to the Devil! [Good reading though;)]

GK said...

I agree with coops, if you arn't a rich snob, this new hobby must be an age thing. And it does seem to coincide with a recent birthday of yours Stew. Hmmm......

Roy @ CNM said...

It's not so much the rich snob angle as the fact that you praise golf only weeks afterdissing baseball. What, exactly, is wrong with you?!? I would rather watch paint dry or grass grow than play golf. I would rather submit to torture than watch golf. Golf is one of those rare activities that blend elitism, boredom, and sexism (it's very much an old-boys-club game), a throback to a bygone era of stuffy white men. For shame, stew, for shame...

Alissa said...

ever see "The Greatest Game Ever Played" with Shia LeBeouf... freaking good movie... and the extent of my knowledge about golf. Even though I've been twice.

What it tells me that you have been golfing twice in three months... you have too much expendable income and should be sending donations to La Maison de Eng.

Mr Jo Bloggity said...

Even reading this post was as boring as watching golf.


If you want a good read, go check out my latest post.
~shameless plug~Most Awesome Post Ever