Why It's Finally Awesome To Watch Golf On TV

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Long after I was forced to abandon the youthful delusion that my natural athleticism would allow me to master a sport so inherently un-masterable, so nefariously nuanced and niggling as golf, my one revenge against the game was a vow to never watch it on TV. If golf was to so mercilessly expose my shortcomings, then I would steadfastly refuse to expose myself to it any more than necessary…

Golf on TV back then was a notch below even professional bowling in terms of excitement and exactly on par with it in my mind in terms of the “ennui factor”—the stultifying complacency of suburban-den Saturdays wherein sleepy, overworked fathers slouched beside beanbag ashtrays, their torpor barely disrupted by the intermittent ball swipes, muffled applause and hushed announcer voices emanating from curtained-speaker TV consoles everywhere. Golf on TV was for me synonymous with stasis and senescence and surrender: a world of plaid-panted men with Banlon-bulged midriffs being watched by the very same, the only difference being that the guys on the screen moved around a bit more…

Whether [Tiger] Woods’s play induced the coverage to rise up to meet it, or the two occurred coincidentally, no sport has been better served by the current technological advances in television than golf. Somehow the deadening disconnect between the golfer’s swing and its distant result, all the wispy-thin club swipes and ball plops of yesteryear, the soundless treading, muffled winds and hand claps that used to double me over with depression, has now given way to something far more textured, and dynamic, and, well, dare I say this, sexy…

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