Have you ever just sat back in your chair, minding your own business and just suddenly think to yourself “What the Hell?” I’ve done it and more often than not, it happens in an unprovoked way. Admittedly, I’ve done this more often than I care to say, but it happens.
Now, in a similar situation, while sipping on your morning “Cup ‘o’ Joe” you find yourself immersed in the internet. You’re going through golf websites (and I hope that I’m one of your stops) or through golf social media channels and you see things from the world of golf that make you mildly outraged? Honestly, this happened to me this past weekend. But, not in the way that you might think. I’m actually outraged at some outrage.
2020 has been a strange year as we all know. In a way, I think that it’s messed with our heads, and in a way, for some people, it’s made some of us lose our minds or lost touch with reality. Issues that shouldn’t matter or should be a big deal suddenly are. In my opinion, golf media, or particularly golf social media channels haven’t helped.
Hoodies. Now here was something that caused outrage, or as I worded it over social media “Faux Outrage”. It’s funny, I never thought that in my lifetime hoodies and golf would be the focal point of so much malcontent. Yet, here we are.
This weeks winner on the European Tour (Tyrell Hatton) caused a stir over golf social media because he was wearing a hoodie. Is this really something to be upset over? I mean, have a look around. This is a year where millions have been sick and over a million have died from the pandemic, worldwide.
Golfers are a fickle and funny bunch. Is there a group of hobbyists or sportsmen and women that are more closed-minded than golfers? Just think back to when 460cc drivers came out. Then, white-headed drivers came out. “I’m not hitting those” many would say. If something comes out that doesn’t fit the mold of tradition, many golfers shut it out. If there’s something that I’ve learned during my years of golfing and in particular covering the sport. Golf more than ever needs more open-mindedness. As far as I’m concerned, until this year where golf took an upturn, it’s my opinion that the sport was in a downturn and in need of change, in many facets, to draw more players.
Life is about making choices, and that was something that Tyrell Hatton did. He made a choice to wear an Adidas hoodie, and I have no problem with it, nor do I care. If you as a recreational golfer want to wear one, live your best life. I’ve worn hooded long sleeve t-shirts at the range. They don’t bug me. The hood might get in the way when the wind is to your back, but it’s something that doesn’t affect me.
If hoodies became more prevalent in the golf apparel industry, I couldn’t care less. It’s just another option for when the weather turns cool. Would a golf course operator turn down revenue because a golfer is wearing a hoodie? No way, as long as there aren’t gaudy graphics or suggestive, profanity-laden wording on it. I have a hoodie or two that I would love to wear on the course, one of them being “Mossy Oak” camouflage. I won’t wear it on the course though, because, I feel that the camo is too underdressed, and not to mention that I want to be seen by golfers around me so I don’t blend in and get hit by more errant golf balls.
If there’s an in-person PGA Show in January, any bets that we see golf-specific hoodies on the show floor? Heck, hoodies are youthful, functional, and trendy. But they aren’t for everyone. Say, are you anti-hoodie or anything new? If that’s the case, why don’t we go back to tweed, shirt and ties, and knickerbockers or “Plus Four’s”? Ladies, you aren’t getting away unscathed either. How about dressing like Babe Zaharias did back then from now on? Toss those tights, yoga pants, and short mini-skirts aside. Take that “Golf Babes”.
Well, at least Tyrell Hatton didn’t change his shoes in the parking lot.
Oops… My bad!
When it comes to Bryson DeChambeau, I haven’t been quiet about my opinion of him. I’ve never been shy about saying that I used to like him a lot. His fresh, different, non cookie-cutter approach to the game was great for golf. This year, he’s taken the golf world by storm. He’s pulverizing the golf ball in a way that we’ve never seen on the worldwide tour’s. Driving greens, sometimes at will, like we saw during the Shriner’s Children’s Hospital Open this weekend.
Here’s my final take on Bryson DeChambeau and his distance. Actually, I don’t think that I’ve expressed an opinion on this yet. In general, I find that the PGA TOUR has become boring to watch, Major Championships notwithstanding. There’s really no sense of them working or golfing their golf ball. “Bomb and Gouge” isn’t new. Moreover, it’s here to stay. What I have touched on however is, that the current generation of player is more athletic now than ever, with a plethora of resources at their disposal. Equipment, shafts, balls, launch monitors, agronomy, scientific research have all contributed to the “arms race”.
There’s been a lot of discussion whether or not what Bryson DeChambeau is doing is good for the game. He’s been called out by some of his peers. As far as long-term, overall, the jury is still out. From a viewer standpoint, it might be a hung jury. While some love the “shock and awe” others simply don’t like it. I’m not a fan, but it’s not just solely Bryson, it’s just in general. “Bomb and Gouge”. It’s for this reason why I prefer to watch the LPGA. Yes, the ladies are getting longer too for the same reasons, but they still work the golf ball and manage the game like we’ve customarily seen.
Mathematics, science, and working out has been great for Bryson and no doubt, it’s an approach that not many other’s can take. I appreciate his hard work and the time that he’s put in. The dedication and commitment. Heck, many of us could stand to follow in his footsteps in that regard. As long as the mass/muscle gain was clean, I have no issue with him and his “beefed-up” physicality. However, what I do have an issue with when it comes to Bryson is his pace of play, his antics, and the bad habit of taking it out on cameramen when he’s playing poorly. Quit deflecting Bryson, it’s you and your poor play doesn’t give you the right to be a bully. Which is exactly how you and your caddie come off.
Mathematically and scientifically speaking, Bryson, is there any way that a hoodie could help me or others play better golf, whilst hitting the ball longer? Is there any chance that you’d consider wearing a hoodie? You’d drive the masses off of the edge of a cliff like lemmings.
Until The Next Tee!!