As Casey was examining a 20ft putt at the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship, a dog walked onto the green, picked up the ball and playfully took it away from the golfer. Casey, who’s been having a terrible 2012 season making only 5/17 tournament cuts so far, can’t seem to buy a good one and when even random animals get involved, you know it’s time to take a step back, and perhaps return to the game when you’re all better.
And I say that as an ex-golfer.
I used to play golf and hated it even though I played golf semi-regularly for 5-6 years. I had played (amateur) hockey most of my life and since lots of professional hockey players play golf in the off-season, I decided to try my hand at it.
Like a safari among the Huambisa Amazonian headshrinkers, golf is a terrible thing to just try.
First of all you start off with a microscopic ball worth 32$ and only slightly larger than a baboon’s testicle. The point is getting the ball into a hole placed in a galaxy far, far away. You’re told you’re supposed to strike it with tiny hockey sticks made of expensive metallic alloys. You’d think they’re expensive because of the actual metallurgical alloy casting process but you’d be wrong, they’re expensive because of the commercials and marketing that are used in promoting them.
There is no reason, in 2012 why millions of Americans struggling to make ends meet and feed their families should have to put up with a company that has their 2000$ golf clubs tested aerodynamically to see how fast they strike the ball. It seems overkill doesn’t it?
Then consider some of the names used for golf clubs, The Big Bertha, The Cobra Baffler, The Alien Wedge… You can’t make these up. To be noted also is that in almost every other sport, improving the quality of the equipment has yielded at least some improvement in performance. Look at it historically, sprinters are quicker and quicker, better training and better, lighter shoes. Car racing, Formula One, NASCAR, Indy car or IRL or whatever they call it these days have all been forced to make rules that SLOW DOWN their cars because better technology made them so fast it was becoming dangerous for the drivers and sometimes the spectators.
Hockey equipment is so light these days that a pair of skates weighs less than one single skate from 10 years ago, and the blade is almost half as thick. Goaltender equipment is so light that the line should be called Helium.
Golf? No. Look at the statistics on golf courses, if we applied the same logical evolution to golf, that has happened to most other sports, my 63 year old asthmatic mom with rheumatism should be able to complete any golf course in 50 strokes given the best equipment out there today.
Me? No. On a good day I’ll break 120 unless I have to walk the whole course, in which case 150 is more accurate.
In retrospect I should’ve known golf was not a sport when they showed me their golf bags. In any sport where clubs, bats or sticks are used, if in your bag you have more balls than actual clubs, you know you’re in trouble.
Golf is not so much about getting a tiny ball in an even smaller hole, placed four football fields away, hidden behind trees, lakes, beaches and several pelicans. No. Golf is about who spends less time looking for their balls in the woods. Good luck Paul Casey, for the rest of the golf season, may you not have to go searching for your balls too far.