I hate golf.
There, I said it.
This might be the single biggest indicator that, despite all my tomboyish ways, I retain a strong X in my second chromosome; golf is simply something that doesn't communicate with me.
Of course, golf's status as a man's game is changing with the likes of Michele Wie and with its traditional bigotry becoming more and more frowned upon, and just as I have drawn a distinction in football and baseball with the behavior of those involved and the game and what there is to enjoy about it, I won't use the sexism and racism golfing has often involved as a criticism of the game itself (and, btw, I regret doing similar in my previous post about college football).
But still, it may not be a Y chromosome, per se, but whatever is necessary to appreciate golf, I lack it. My father's contention is that it's probably boring to me because I've never tried to play golf and thus don't have the same appreciation for what the guys on the PGA tour are doing. He's almost certainly right; problem is, I have no interest whatsoever in attaining that appreciation.
Today we watched some tournament or another; the one Tiger Woods is in. I'm sure to golf enthusiasts me saying "some tournament or another, the one Tiger Woods is in" is equivalent to saying "some football game or another; the one going on in Detroit this year," to a football fan, but really? I don't care.
I understand that golf takes physical dexterity and coordination; determination and probably an advanced knowledge of trigonometry. All that is wonderful, but frankly I'd rather watch another variation of same, namely the Super Bowl or World Series, or, hell, a preseason standoff between the Saints and the Cardinals or a spring training game between the Devil Rays and the Rockies or, if we're being completely honest, paint dry.
I hate golf. I can't get interested even for a minute. Today one guy hit the ball from one sand trap directly into another, and I felt sorry for him for about a split second before remembering that he's playing golf, and therefore probably deserves whatever humiliation he suffers. Also, he's wearing a pink goddamn shirt.
Sorry, folks, I'm not going to respect a sport where grown-ass men wear pastel colors. And khakis. Where announcers whisper. Whose greatest heckler is the "Get in the Hole!" guy.
Watching golf is like watching investment bankers try to dance. It's like listening to lounge versions of rock songs. It's like this arcane ritual of stylized relaxation among highly white people. And I say this as a white person.
While I don't expect any understanding about this given two of my favorite pastimes are watching teams of 9 guys chase a little white ball around an oddly-shaped patch of grass or teams of eleven guys piling onto another team of eleven guys--golf seems the ultimate in pointless. Just a matter of personal taste, of course.
But I feel vehemently about it. Nothing aggravates me more than the swooping helicopter shots over the Rorscharch blot of greens and doglegs and fairways nested next to the coast of some tropical place--all that land co opted, revised and manicured to within an inch of its life by groundskeepers I can only envision as Rain Man. And then everyone involved in the game minces around on the grass, squatting down and lining up a putt, lowering their voices to whisper about what the squatting guy might be thinking about, testing the wind, listening on the ground for approaching trains, plucking a stray blade of the Kentucky bluegrass imported especially for this particular green, adjusting the collar of a yellow shirt with an alligator on the front, sniffing the ball, lining up the shot, wiggling hips, lining up the shot, squatting back down...repeating the process, squashing an ant between the ball and the hole, mopping the brow, wiggling the hips, wiggling the whips, wiggling the hips, wiggling the hips, practice swing practice swing practice swing tink! Sending the ball half an inch from the stupid hole.
"GET IN THE HOLE!" That Guy yells a split second later.
Ugh. It just makes me want to barf with boredom. It makes me want to walk up to the guy and demand, "Am I supposed to be impressed with that? Huh? Is that supposed to be impressive? You're wearing a yellow shirt and you just took fifteen goddamn minutes to roll a little ball along five feet. How do you sleep at night knowing this activity is categorized alongside real athletes, like Michael Jordan?"
Ultimately, though, similar things could be written about "my" sports, especially baseball, and I'll admit here and now I don't have a rational leg to stand on about this. If I'm to be completely honest, it probably has to do with something about my childhood. Golf being on TV usually meant there was no football or baseball to be watched (we've never been huge fans of basketball or hockey in my family). Which means it's usually exactly this time of year--late January into February, while winter drips on endlessly outside the window. It's a Sunday, traditionally my weakest day of the week anyway, and, at least during my childhood when there was one television in the house, golf being on TV was insult to injury. The irritating sound of limp-wristed golf clapping always brings back such an afternoon, right at the point when my mother announces we're having pork chops for dinner and we all go, "Uh huh," and look out the window into the slush.
Today, as a matter of fact, was just such an afternoon.