Golf Can’t Be That Hard If Old and Fat People Can Play It

June 17, 2011 § Leave a comment

A couple of months ago at work*, the person who sat to the right of me, we’ll call him Jimmy, looked at me like I had just farted in his mom’s face when I took a cheap shot at Tiger Woods’s health. Woods had just dropped out of the Players Championship after playing just 9 holes. I asked how someone, aside from being hit in the teeth with a golf ball, could possibly get hurt playing golf considering it’s one of the least physical sports, and obnoxiously fat people can play it professionally.

*By the way, blame work for my alarming lack of blogging lately. You can also blame the warm weather, the fact that my brother’s home for the summer, TV (especially Game of Thrones and Workaholics) or all of my friends getting married. Just don’t blame me. I have nothing to do with it!

My comments were halfway facetious, as are two-thirds of the words that come out of my mouth, but Jimmy (who has since left the company) always seemed to have the sense of humor and overall demeanor of Eeyore, so he obviously didn’t take kindly to my comments. A four-year college golfer and a huge PGA fan, Jimmy is more one-dimensional in his love for golf than the most one-dimensional athletes/analysts (Tedy Bruschi and Mark Schlereth come to mind) who can’t go more than five minutes without somehow mentioning their favorite sport, no matter how inane the reference or metaphor.**

**e.g. if you asked Bruschi about his new SUV he bought, he would probably say, “You know, driving that thing really reminds me of football because your head constantly has to be on a swivel and you have to be ready to take a hit at any time!”

Anyway, Jimmy objected to my comments and claimed that golf, contrary to my statement, is actually quite physical. He claimed that each swing puts three times your body weight’s pressure on your back and that in turn puts extra pressure on the rest of a golfer’s body, especially a golfer’s knees, which happened to be what was, and still is, ailing Tiger. He also said that walking the whole golf course, which usually totals around four or five miles, saps golfers’ energy and that I should realize that golf is a difficult and demanding sport. I conceded that, yes, I’m sure swinging a golf club puts some pressure on your body and that walking the course would get tiresome.

But get fucking real! Golf is not a demanding sport! Soccer players run up to eight miles per game, much of it at a minimum of three-quarters speed. Basketball players run between three and five miles per game and constantly have to move in every direction imaginable. We all know the physical toll football players, boxers, wrestlers and hockey players face every time they play a game. Shit, even baseball players have to be in a lot better shape than golfers because (a.) they have to hit a ball that’s being thrown at them, not just sitting there waiting to be hit, and (b.) they have to run once in a while. When’s the last time a golfer had to run, or even lightly jog on the course?

At this point, Jimmy’s body language suggested that he might have gotten in my face and physically confronted me had we not been in the office. I would’ve kicked his ass of course because he’s a golfer, and I play real sports. But I digress.

Just to prove my point, here’s a story ESPN.com published a few years ago about the difficulty of pretty much any sport you can think of and where each sport ranks. They actually interviewed experts from multiple fields of science and sport and incorporated a lot of work into their research, which is a lot better than the arbitrary rankings based on nothing that I would’ve given you. Here are some of the rankings:

  1. Boxing
  2. Ice Hockey
  3. Football
  4. Basketball
  5. Wrestling

And coming in at no. 51, just ahead of no. 52 CHEERLEADING, is, you guessed it, golf.

I’m not saying that I hate golf; in fact, like most people, I like golf the 40 percent of the time my shots travel the way I envision them. But it’s not a physical sport in the least bit. Jimmy, if you’re reading this, I hope this knocks you down a peg or two the next time you come into the office on a Monday morning and act like you completed a fucking Ironman Triathlon just because you played a few rounds of golf over the weekend.

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