Why Are Men So Obsessed With Sport?

morgan-david-de-lossy-575823-unsplash
Photo by Morgan David de Lossy on Unsplash

The old man is that breed of men that needs to hit a ball at least once a day. He delights in telling anyone who can listen to him (without falling asleep) about his childhood spent in the family garage, throwing ball after ball against its back wall. And while the sporting promise of his youth didn’t translate into a career, that need of a fix – to either hit, kick or knock a ball of any shape – hasn’t dwindled with age.

Since he began to work from home and has more flexibility with his time, his obsession has returned; which puts a lot of pressure on his most obvious opponents. Admittedly, The Princess takes some of the pressure off me by collecting and returning the hundreds of air golf balls he whacks into the back hedge of the garden, and he has made a couple of friends that play tennis with him or accompany him on silent missions around the golf course. However, I’m the unlucky sod that picks up most of the slack.

For our recent anniversary celebration in Bowral, I picked a quaint hotel with a nine-hole golf course, because, a feminist, I wanted to demonstrate that the romantic weekend was about both of us before we trawled around the main focus of the two days to the town’s mecca of interior design shops. img_8680

With a forced smile on my face, I followed him around what was a beautiful, scenic, (and thankfully) short golf course on our first day. In arctic temperatures, I searched for balls, complimented good shots, sympathized with bad, whilst maintaining a smile on my face at all times, my eye firmly on the prize of the hotel bar at the end of our two hours of hell.

The following morning, he was awake three hours before me, and when I opened my eyes to a bouncing puppy on the end of our bed, eyes pleading to let him play golf again and forgo his much-anticipated first-day cushion-shopping, I gave in.

We met up again later that morning, to play tennis – a warm-up for a grueling afternoon tour of the local wineries – and a sport that I have come to enjoy since I’ve learned to ignore his scathing comments and tantrums from the other side of the net. Nevertheless, it took some control not to laugh in his face when he suggested a game of pool that night.

Is your partner obsessed with sport?

A Day In The Life Of Donald Duck… Erm Trump

It’s so discriminating when all you want to do is play a round of golf with some celebrity or white supremacist and minor events, like the funerals of the latest teenage shooting victims, get in the way.

man-1675685_1920

And then there are those persistent (and frankly, annoying) rumors about being in bed with the Russians and several strippers, which means Melania refuses to talk to me, in spite of the new gun I bought her by way of an apology. Note to self: put the parenting controls back on the internet, or before I know it, she’ll be bleating on #metoo as well. Also, ask Bill how he handled this type of situation.

 

I can’t even moan on Twitter these days without some official rapping my knuckles. And they call this privilege.

 

How’s a working-class man supposed to unwind from his responsibilities? When is a man to find the time to perfect his swing and complete his Seven Kingdoms empire?  There’s far too much crap to deal with in this job – gay marriage, equal pay, gun control. Before we know it, women will expect control of their own bodies as well.

 

Imagine the reality of that – no baby Trumps to go out and fuck the world over.

 

It’s not like my election was ever meant to happen. The campaign was only a ruse to start with, to make sure Ugly-Dyke-Clinton didn’t get in, and to meet the challenge of that n… Mr. Goody-Two-Shoes, I’ve-Got-A-HotAF-Wife-And-I’m-Black. Is it any wonder that Osama got in with all the black voting power he let into the country.

 

We can’t let that happen again. A black president – what was the country thinking? Anyway, I kind of miss those blackface parties. Soon we’ll be taken over. They’ll be climbing that wall like White Walkers if we’re not careful – although obviously, we’ll have to call them Black Walkers – ha-ha! Are Mexicans even black? Which reminds me – do I need to cancel my lunch at the gun club to check on the height of the wall again – if only those migrants could add up.

 

So much to do, so little time to play golf.

 

Note to self: Book a tee-time tomorrow before the paps get up and read the fake news first. Check that no recent disasters (for which you will be accountable – boring), need attending to, and to be safe, anesthetize your tongue.

 

 

I Bet Tiger Woods Doesn’t Need A Retirement Plan

We’re determined not to slum it in our retirement. When you marry an accountant, you save to the grave.

And when one of those spanking new, schmick, over 55 apartments goes up in our neighbourhood, the old man and I start frothing at the mouth like rabid dogs.

We’ve been saving for our retirement our whole life. While all our mates were splashing their cash on fabulous Caribbean holidays, sky-high mortgages and recreational drugs, we were surreptitiously saving. Smugly. But with the Greek-effect on property, there’s an air of uncertainty that our precious nest egg may not be Ostrich-sized after all, and the ‘timeless elegance, sandstone pillars, handrails on every wall and panic button in every toilet’, might be just out of reach.

Maybe retirement is over-rated after all, or a myth as perpetrated by the doom-and-gloom tabloids.

Having retirement as our ‘life goal’ is no doubt considered foolish by some. But after years of soul searching, tinkering with sea and career changes in search of that balance between ‘quality’ of life and ‘standard of living’, we’ve arrived at the same nirvana. To ‘work our bollocks off and retire early’.

Our retirement plan has been modified a gazillion times. I bet Tiger Woods doesn’t need to modify his.

It has been the source of Friday night banter/ferocious debate, since we first had kids and our social life ended. ‘Friday night potential’ should be bottled and sold.

Some Fridays we’re touring Australia in an old graffitied combi van, the next we’re circumnavigating the world via catamaran. We’ve been philanthropists in Africa and hedonists in New York, but the ideal has remained the same.

The dream is to rediscover who we were, without life’s interruptions. No clocks, no routine, no conventions, no-one to answer to. Once upon a time, the fire in our bellies burned with ambition; it now burns with freedom’s potential.

But is retirement over-rated? For no matter how you spin it, no matter how secure the gated community looks, or how green the grass, you’re still fundamentally too old to enjoy all the things you’ve dreamed about for the last forty years. Old bodies, addled brains and the memory skills of an ADHD kid, may simply not be synonymous with an ‘active’ wish list.

And then there’s the boredom issue.

The old man refuses to acknowledge boredom as an ‘issue’ in his /our retirement. I’m not certain our common bond of kids and Penfolds is enough to sustain us?

Like Tiger, the old man is aspiring to play a lot of golf in his retirement too.

So how will I fill my days out in the pasture while he’s on the course? What happens when the initial jubilation of being permanently on holiday begins to wane?

Routine can’t be the answer; that would be anathema to the newbie retiree, who’s spent forty odd years fantasizing about breaking down the walls?

Once we’ve booted the progeny out of the nest, will we really be expected to change the habits of a marriage and do things together, like we used to before ‘effort’ became a dirty word?

His daily schedule will no doubt change. To be considered a serious golfing twat, he will need  to sink thirty-six balls a day, wear very silly long socks and develop a taste for Cuban cigars. I can picture him now, dribbling on the orthopaedic mattress between rounds, in our manicured ivory tower.

He can be Tiger’s bitch.

But if we do have to cut our cloth accordingly, and if ‘the egg’ turns out to be disappointingly quail-sized, how will I fuel my mojo if I don’t have the financial means to bitch with the girls over skim caps and Margaritas?

A vocal embargo will be enforced, once his new best friends are Ted the green keeper and his nine iron. And as my brain could atrophy, if it’s under-utilised, I will need access to some intellectual input beyond Fashion Police, OK Magazine and Masterchef.

We’ll need a routine, a plan, new parameters. We’ll need to learn how to compromise. There are only so many times the kitchen cupboards can be reorganised, the oak handrails polished. Stuck in the tower, there won’t be ‘days off’ to look forward to, jobs to moan about and impossible bosses to badmouth. They’ll be little social interaction beyond the antique white walls and Facebook.

Separate bedrooms are non-negotiable because we’ll need our space; separate hobbies and lives have worked so far. An escape plan could be as important as the retirement plan.

He owes me something. Please don’t let him let me get to the stage of forgetting to pluck my eyebrows, or thinking that elasticated-waisted trousers, blue hair, matching sun hats or socks with sandals look really cool. Please don’t let him think that Viagra is the answer. Flat shoes are already becoming more than a passing fascination. The slope is slippery.

The only thing we’re likely to come together on is our secret fear; the fear of the kids coming back.

Or maybe…….

I’ll unexpectedly catch his eye one day and remember that handsome and shy sixteen-year-old boy who somehow found the courage to invite me out for coffee all those years ago.  And I’ll be glad we made it to retirement, togevver. Even if we do end up ‘slumming it’.

Unlikely though……

Our Bus courtesy of vdub victim at www.flickr.com

Retirement Plan courtesy of s_falkow at www.flickr.com