October 4, 2002
"Golf is a good walk spoiled."–Mark Twain
Most people who know me think I have no interest in sports. Actually this isn’t true. There are two sports which I follow closely enough that I’ll actually make time to sit down and watch them. They are soccer and billiards. I know you’re probably scratching your head and saying to yourself, "When did soccer become a sport?" All I can say to that is, put Pele and Babe Ruth next to each other and tell me which one looks more like an athlete. (If you’re outside the United States and don’t know what "soccer" is, it’s what we call football. We have a sport completely unlike football that we call football. I have no idea whose fault this is, but I think it’s the Swiss.)
As for billiards, if you’re backward and ignorant enough to think billiards isn’t a sport consider this: My cable service delivers four channels that devote their entire programming to sporting events, and they show billiards matches (…every eight years…at 3:00 in the morning). Billiards is a sport, and I should know. Once while watching a billiards match I ate a hot dog, drank a beer, and hooted like a baboon every time the player I’d decided I wanted to see win made a really great shot. The bizarre thing is that in billiards the players are divided into men and women. I have no idea why this is. Billiards is one sport in which neither gender has any clear advantage over the other. Maybe it’s tradition, but if we went by tradition we’d all be wearing powdered wigs and anyone who didn’t own property wouldn’t be allowed to vote. In football (not soccer) the need for the division is obvious: the men are afraid of the women. Recently the National Women’s Football League decided to call its final big match of the year the Sup-Her Bowl, and the men’s organization, just called the National Football League, sent in their lawyers to claim that a match that probably wouldn’t even be broadcast on one of the four sports channels at 3:00 in the morning might cause confusion with the media extravaganza known as the Super Bowl. The only reason I know this because a sports commentator named Frank Deford who gives my public radio station its minimum amount of sports coverage required of all news media – as if four television channels weren’t enough – mentioned it. Normally I tune him out because he hates soccer and doesn’t mention billiards, but I can always appreciate yet another story that demonstrates the stupidity of a large organization using its power and prestige to act like a big, ignorant bully who’s not mature enough to know better.
But I digress. Some of you may have heard that I occasionally play golf, but this isn’t true. The other people on the course with me play golf. What I do is use a metal rod with a wedge on one end to knock a small white ball into the woods, where I spend the next four hours until it’s time to quit for lunch. Other people go out to play golf. I just go out for a good walk.
Enjoy this week’s offerings.
How To Keep A Healthy Level Of Insanity
1) At lunch time, sit in your parked car with sunglasses on and point a hair dryer at passing cars. See if they slow down.
2) Page yourself over the intercom. Don’t disguise your voice.
3) Every time someone asks you to do something, ask if they want fries with that.
4) Put your garbage can on your desk and label it "IN."
5) Develop an unnatural fear of staplers.
6) Put decaf in the coffee maker for 3 weeks. Once everyone has gotten over their caffeine addictions, switch to espresso.
7) In the memo field of all your cheques, write "FOR SEXUAL FAVORS."
8) Finish all your sentences with "In accordance with the prophecy."
9) Don’t use any punctuation
10) As often as possible, skip rather than walk.
12) Ask people what sex they are. Laugh hysterically after they answer.
14) Specify that your drive-through order is "to go."
15) Sing along at the opera.
16) Send a numbered list over the internet, but leave out one number.
17) Put mosquito netting around your cubicle. Play a tape of jungle sounds all day.
17) Five days in advance, tell your friends you can’t attend their party because you’re not in the mood.
18) Have your coworkers address you by your wrestling name, Rock Hard.
19) When the money comes out of the ATM, scream "I won!", "I won!" "Third time this week!!!"
20) Tell your children over dinner. "Due to the economy, we are going to have to let one of you go."
And the final way to keep a healthy level of insanity….
21) Send this e-mail to everyone in your address book, even if they sent it to you or have asked you not to send them stuff like this.