Golf is so Wrong, it’s hard for me to be coherent about it.
Once upon a time, I did pen a lengthy and somewhat lucid three-part jihad on the Outrage Of Golf. For one of the many newspapers that lived and died around here. Probably the papered remains, they are down in the Manor basement. Somewhere. Maybe, someday, I’ll run across them. And, maybe, then, I’ll re-screed the jihad, here.
For the nonce, though: golf, briefly, was devised by bored Scottish sheepherders, casting around for something to do while waiting for their erections to return. At which time they could again commence buggering the sheep.
As Mark Twain observed in this space, a wee while back, penile erectile recovery, it can take some time. And so there were many idle hours, for these sad-sack shriveled-scrotum Scottish men. Out there on the moors. Glumly waiting for peter, to arise again. Buffeted by the wind, encloaked in the mist. Desultorily banging with sticks a small ball. Through the sheepshorn grass. Around sand-sweeps and puddled-places. Into various and sundry gophered holes. Waiting. Waiting. For the rise.
It is a Known Science Fact that Scottish sheepherders inserting their man-sticks into the nether holes of sheep is how incubated syphilis. Pace those the-horror/the-horror people of West Virginia, syphilis marks the nadir of the Scottish contribution to Mankind.
Well. Except for golf.
After all: today there is a cure for syphilis. But there does not seem to be any cure at all for golf.
I once knew a man who worked many years as a groundskeeper on a golf course situated in California’s Central Valley.
This man: he was a good man, a wise man, a feeling man.
And so, the obscenity of his occupation, it hurt—hard—his brain.
To assuage the pain, he first, and for well over a decade, consumed, pretty much every hour, on the hour, mass quantities of the strongest mind-ripping marijuana. The paralyzing effects of this uber-gage transported him to places where few humans go. For instance, once, when, for reasons I can no longer remember, we were all sitting around watching Dumbo, he blurted out: “I am not a human being! I am an elephant!” The man also became obsessed with the notion that things here on Terra are so of the bungled and the botched because this world was designed and implemented by a “rookie god.” The creature had had no practice—this was the being’s first try—and so s/he bumbled out a planet utterly festooned with mammoth and grievous boners.
Eventually the marijuana could no longer do the job. And so he nestled next into methamphetamine. Which inevitably resulted in the day when he entered that congenital meth Reality in which it is absolutely Necessary to hurl the couch through the vast expanse of the full-length plate-glass window in the living room.
His wife, who did not join him in this Reality, in turn hurled him out of the house. He packed everything he owned into a small station wagon, and went into exile in Los Molinos. This is a small northstate community best known, to Those Who Know, for the Ewell-like family who dwelled for many years out by the town dump. The mother had died eons back, but there remained a father, and also many daughters. And so, each year, at least one of the daughters would come shuffling, somewhat shamefaced, out of the woods, charged with some errand like the family shopping, and bearing a newborn.
The reason why his occupation as golf-course greenskeeper so grievously affected this feeling man, so much so that he was eventually compelled to hurl his couch through his living-room window, is because, as he knew, siting a golf course, pretty much anywhere outside of Scotland, is an act of Insanity.
Golf sprang, naturally, from the place of its birth. Flat and/or gently undulating earth, covered with thick grass, watered by the clouds, close-cropped by sheep. Here and there, scattered about, smallish pools of water; bowls of sand. Maybe a spindly stand or two of trees. Some holes.
Golf, therefore, is fine—in its place. A place where sheep steadily crop the grass—as they do to this day on many golf courses in Scotland—and where the elements quite naturally dump down the literal rivers of water required to keep living and thriving the course and the greens.
It’s a normal thing, golf, for that sort of misty moist place.
But, as the photo there to the left demonstrates, golf, even in its native place, has, today, been brutally buggered into a place beyond absurdity, or even the Sane. Unto a shrieking maddened Court of Chaos, requiring that we must needs close our eyes, and then inject, into every available artery and vein, only the most potent of narcotics, so as to rid ourselves of the Pain.