Last Tuesday, I did something so stupid that I have been hobbling around and whining all week long.
Tuesday was the day that I traveled to Butte, Mt. by high speed Elantra. I arrived fairly early. So after trying to negotiate a two week stay at the Finlen Hotel with Ebeneezer Scrooge, I found myself with some extra time. It was only about 3 P.M., so I jumped in the Elantra and found the golf course of my youth. The Butte Country Club.
I have a lot of fond memories of that place. It was my first job- cleaning golf clubs, putting them away, and picking up range balls. I was 12 years old. It is also where I met the Kneivel clan. It is where I learned to play golf and gamble. I have always meant to play the course again at varying times in the past 38 years- but alas I have always been too busy.
So Tuesday was the day. I put on my new golf shoes. I talked to the assistant pro. He told me to go ahead and play for free- because they were still playing on temporary greens. I haven't played on temporary greens for 40 years. For those of you who don't know- a temporary green is a piece of fairway that the greenskeepers shave down to nubs, stick a cup and a flag in the middle somewhere, and leave it that way during the winter months. They do this to prevent damage to the regular greens. They also do this even though nobody ever plays amidst the sub zero, arctic, Butte winters because inevitably if they did not- some member with clout would whine and criticize the employees. Usually some whiny ass liberal. I understand all of that.
The pro said I would have to walk, the course was wet from the snow melt. No big deal I thought. Off I went. A chance to revisit my youth which was long overdue and I was pretty excited about it. I wondered if I would remember it accurately.
The golf course was in horrible shape. It was covered with leaves and goose shit, but mostly goose shit. It was soggy. They had cut the temp greens far short of the regular greens and they were simply unplayable. The goose shit was everywhere.
By the fourth hole, I began to feel that my new shoes were wearing blisters in both of my heels. Like an idiot, I soldiered on thinking the pain would go away. It got worse. By the 7th hole, I was a hurting unit. It was time to make a decision. This golf course is configured in such a way that the 8th hole is the absolute maximum length away from the pro shop and parking lot. Playing the 8th meant an additional 400 yards, each way, worth of blister damage.
So I said fuck it. I would just have to revisit my youth some other time. First, I had to take off the shoes. I then had to walk the 14 miles back to the clubhouse through soggy grass, knee high goose shit, and some of the most jagged asphalt anyone ever called a cart path.
Of course I saw someone playing in a golf cart. The privileged elite are everywhere. Rules never apply to them.
When I arrived back at the clubhouse, I looked at my soggy, goose shit covered socks and threw them away. It occurred to me that goose shit might not be good for one's bloodstream- that bacteria potentially entering my body through newly formed access holes in my epidermis. I went to the pharmacy for some of that "New Skin" which I have used in the past to disinfect wounds and to dress areas of my body where bandaging doesn't work.
I have always imagined that the pain of giving birth might be intense. My mother, or the woman who claims to be my mother because I don't remember the event exactly, has always claimed that I have some low pain thresh hold which of course, I have always vigorously contested. However, as I painted the "New Skin" on over those quarter sized holes on both of my heels- the pain was intense. I pictured my mother in the hotel room with me, nodding her head and saying, "I told you so."
So I have been hobbling around all week like a cripple. Each day, my shoes wear new holes through the original blisters. So I have been using the "New Skin" regularly because I am an idiot and I am also starting to enjoy the pain a little. Shifting gears here ever so gently to the actual subject of today's blog...
On the way home from Montana yesterday- I was listening to a story about a college bound teenager, Suzy Lee Weiss, who had been denied admission to several Ivy League Universities. The writers and broadcasters said that she had SAT scores in the stratosphere, a 4.5 GPA (how the hell do you get that?) and that she did a whole host of other things which normally would guarantee someone like her- a trip to a prestigious university. After being turned down by several of these schools, poor Ms. Weiss wrote an op ed piece with plenty of smart assery in it and offered it up to the New York Times. She calls it "sat... TIRE." Being the whiny ass liberals that they are- the Times published the piece and now Ms. Weiss is a celebrity. She was even on the Today Show.
Talk about throwing a pity party.
Most people caught on to the part where Ms. Weiss thinks she is entitled. They can also see the "spoiled tantrum" part. I see all that. I can even say on behalf of Ms. Weiss- that maybe she has a point.
It is her complete and utter unconsciousness that absolutely blows me away. That level of self absorption is world class.
Less than 1/10th of one percent of all Americans can graduate high school with the appropriate prerequisite credentials and have the means- which amounts to hundreds of thousands of dollars and elite connections- to attend an Ivy League school.
For millions of us- attending an Ivy League school was impossible. I am the son of a farmer turned many other things. I am so stupid that I thought high school was a waste of time. I went to state college because that was all I could afford and they had to accept me.
I am incredibly grateful for all of that now. I know plenty of people who didn't get that far.
Ms. Weiss is the embodiment of everything that is wrong with this country. Of course she has a sense of entitlement. But so do millions like her. Of course she is spoiled. But the part that absolutely fascinates me- is the self absorbed part. It's all about her. The world revolves around Ms. Weiss. She has to get into an Ivy League school- don't you see- because she is better than most. Can you imagine the absolute horror she must now endure in some state college? She will be relegated to some inferior life, forced to toil in some investment bank at a mid level position, denied the opportunity to rule the banking world. Gone are her dreams of that house in the Hamptons. The private jet. The good life. Gone, gone, gone.
Worse yet, she might even be sentenced to an unremarkable life. A life of petty happiness, surrounded by family and friends, where nobody asks you what school you attended. Perhaps she will even drive an American built van with child seats. Can you imagine the indignity of that?
Yes, all of that would suck something terrible. Ms Weiss might even have one of those lives where the planet forgets who you are. Or...maybe you become one of the...
Millions of ill people, dying people, impoverished people. Imagine being sentenced to one of those lives, Ms. Weiss.
No indeed honey, life ain't fair at all.
That level of unconsciousness and ego is sadly, not uncommon anymore. Ms. Weiss, like so many others, won the birth lottery and she is too fucking stupid to know it. She wants what she wants when she wants it. I know the type well. I repaired myself. Unfortunately, it took me 46 years. I do not have a 4.5 brain.
You are right Ms. Weiss, life isn't fair. If it were, maybe you would have been born somewhere else. Maybe to a single mother shooting dope in the projects. Or to a family in a labor camp. Instead you had the bad luck of being born to parents that know the advantages of a quality education and the means to make it happen. You were born with an intelligent mind. You have an "E" coupon for the day Ms. Weiss- and you waste it whilst whining.
So far I see nothing remarkable here. Another spoiled kid who woke up on home plate and thinks she hit the home run. Let's hope Ms Weiss acquires some sense of clarity and with any luck, some humility and gratitude. Often, life delivers what we need the most. Let's hope that 4.5 brain is working when the message arrives. Here is the story on Huffington Post. Have your Kleenex handy.