Two years ago, I loved golf. I'd worked my way down to a 3.2 index. This was a wonderful time of my life. Breaking 80 was routine. In fact, if I didn't break 80, I felt shitty about my round. I stopped taking practice swings. Hit the ball, walk to the ball, hit the ball, move on to the next hole. I'd reached that mythical golf space where my swing was so grooved that I stopped taking practice swings. On par threes, I'd toss the ball on the ground, roll it with my club to a relatively flat area, and knock it tight with no tee—raw dog, for more sensation.
Putting? Easy. The hole gaped like in those disgusting pornographic films where the male counts to three and then removes his penis and the camera pulls in close on a cavernous orifice inside which the cartel could ferry a year's worth of product over the river and through the woods to grandmother's arm we go.
I discovered strange benefits of this hallowed golf space that I took for granted at the time. Walking a hilly course, I was never out of breath. I'd find that sacred realm between three and four Foreplay Approved Owen's Craft Transfusions and maintain throughout the round. I'd randomly discover missing car keys in some pocket of my golf bag. The pro shop staff laughed more at my jokes. I didn't need to warm up—just a dash from the car to the first tee, still putting my shoes on, late for the round, before smoothing a baby fade to the right side of the fairway. Everything was going my way.
That was 2021. Here was a stretch of scores during this wondrous time:
Unfortunately, those days are long gone. Golf, now, is like those roulette snapchat games where you might reveal something delightful, or you might step into horror so foul, so searing as to make you doubt the bible. One day, I'll walk out there and some vestige of my former self is awakened. We're not breaking 80 but we're shooting 85 with a birdie or two, and we're smiling with our friends for the post-round turkey wrap.
Or (more often than not these days), I card three maxes. There is at least one hosel into the kiddie pool adjacent to the clubhouse and, since nobody wants an autographed glove from me, I'm not welcome back until the child stops slurring his speech. Which may never happen, for all we know. He may be the target of ridicule for years and years, and for what? Because I thought I "deserved" to play blades? They "look cleaner" at address? I can "work the ball better"? Was that aesthetic ego stroke worth the price of setting a young, innocent boy on a path of speech therapy and child psychologists who ultimately raise their hands in defeat as the boy withdraws further into himself, finding solace only in violent video games and incel forums, frequenting piercing parlors and increasing the gauge size of his earrings until the holes in his lobes resemble those rectums we described earlier?
No. I'm sorry. No.
Over the past 12 months, I've watched my handicap balloon from a 4.8 to today's 8.2. There is no end in sight. We cannot turn the ship around as apparently the captain decided to rip the steering wheel off, don a weight vest, and pencil dive straight to the ocean floor. I have NO CLUE what to do, and I resent myself for continuing to throw money at a game that is causing me to suffer sexually.
That's right: my flaccid golf swing is now seeping into my sex life. I'm shanking loads into my poor wife behind whiny grunts. Every effort is an uphill putt I leave 10 feet short. Erections are bending like flag sticks at Pebble Beach against a 35-mph wind off the Pacific. Distracted, defeated, and downtrodden, I have half a mind to find her a proxy lover to stand in for my wilting performances. "Here's a better man for the job!" I'll say, as I head to the kitchen to brew them a batch of ice tea for after.
If anyone has any swing tips, by all means… just know that the problem is deeper-rooted, more insidious. We are dealing with a plague here, folks. My mind and body are plagued. And if you're thinking "shut up Francis, 8.3 is still good," just know the only reason that number isn't higher is because "a soft cap has been applied to suppress upward movement of 50% after a 3.0 stroke increase over the low HI." In other words, I'm playing so badly that the Ghin app thinks I'm cheating to raise my index.
PS- if anyone at Bayonne is reading this, the fact I'm still on the waitlist for the fucking invitational is an outrage. I bring a lot of joy and positivity to that event. Sure, I've thrown the occasional iron into the Hudson off 16. But who hasn't? Please, for God's sake, let me play. I have nothing else to live for.