We here at MojoFiction decided it was high time we started playing disc golf. We decided it after our brother-in-law wouldn’t quit talking about it and then his wife wouldn’t stop talking about it and since, if you’ve followed the lineage, his wife is MojoFiction’s sister, we had to respond lest we lose another battle of sibling rivalry. (If the previous sentence made any sense to you, you win a prize!)
First things first, don’t call it Frisbee golf. We called it Frisbee golf and immediately found ourselves on the FBI home-page. Apparently, where your local municipality may have red-light cameras, disc golfers have covert audio surveillance set up to catch disc golf posers such as MojoFiction. After assuming a new identity and changing our appearance by growing a smashing handlebar mustache, we were ready to take our chances on the course. (We tried to change our appearance by going to the gym and actually getting in shape, but it’s so much easier to grow a mustache.)
Early in the morning, we arrived at Dick’s Sporting Goods to pick ourselves up some fris…discs. Turns out there are several types to choose from and several models for each type. There’s the “Driver,” the “Mid-Range,” the “Bird Killer,” the “Viagra (insert innuendo here),” the “Where-the-@#$!-Did-It-Go?” and the “Putt and Approach.” We’re not sure the “Putt and Approach” was a real disc, because obviously you would approach and then putt, but our brother-in-law assured us it was real and very necessary.
All of these discs have ratings printed on them for four important characteristics:
Range: how far the disc will go in the opposite direction you were aiming.
Fade: how long you can stand out in the sun trying to get that putter in the basket before your sunblock wears off and you burn.
Loft: how quickly the disc will plummet to the ground about ten feet in front of you, causing your eight-year-old son to laugh in your general direction.
Radiation: not sure what that means, but apparently the average disc has a 2000-year half-life and it’s illegal to sell them to Iran.
Unfortunately, we had no idea what any of the number ratings meant, but buying individual discs required taking out a second mortgage just to afford it. Since we wanted to stay off the grid, thanks to the Feds, we instead purchased a three-pack of basic discs using cash that we found in our mustache. Since our son was tagging along, we bought two. Now we were ready to play.
We arrived at a local 18-hole course unsure of what to find. We were concerned because disc golf has a long and honorable tradition and we didn’t want to get it wrong. The game was, of course, invented in Scotland in 1715 by French tourists who, not realizing that the hideous bog monster attacking the neck of a well-kilted Scotsman was actually a bagpipe, grabbed the instrument and flung it away, where it landed on the horns of a highland bull and deflated from the puncture wound. The bull didn’t flinch. It simply started chewing on the bag of pipes. Everyone had a laugh except the Scotsman, who grabbed the Frenchman by his ankles, swung him around, and launched him into the air, starting a tragic feud between their two families. But disc golf was also invented in there somewhere, so we’re assuming there is a lot of tradition.
Anyway, the course that day was empty. However, two guys arrived just before us and were starting the first hole. One guy looked like a football player and the other guy looked like an armchair quarterback who was apparently giving his wife the day off because he had brought his baby along and was pushing the kid around in an Army-regulation ATS (All-Terrain Stroller). We didn’t mind someone ahead of us because it would give us the chance to see exactly what they were doing to play this great and ancient game of disc golf.
Unfortunately, they asked us if we wanted to play through. They said they were going to throw a lot of discs because they were practicing for a tournament. That’s when we noticed the large bag they had that contained at least fifteen discs. But we only counted to eight before they asked us to stop snooping in their bag. But, still, a tournament?
It turns out there is a Professional Disc Golf Association (PDGA). It’s pretty serious stuff and we here at MojoFiction would challenge anyone who has joined to show us why we should not laugh at them. What? You can win money at these things? …See, it turns out we are also a member as of a few moments ago, so you should respect the PDGA.
So we played through, launching our first disk at the basket we could see in the distance. Apparently, we accidentally grabbed the “Where-the-@#$!-Did-It-Go?” disc, because we immediately lost it. But after some trial and error we were on our way. We arrived at the basket of the first hole only to find someone else’s disc already there. The guys behind us apologized, but it was the baby’s first try and basically a lucky shot.
The course was crazy, with holes going around the woods, into the woods, and through vast swatches of deep grasses meant to claim your disc forever. Somehow we made it to the end with our son only winning by a few strokes (in our defense, it’s harder for him to lose his discs since he doesn’t throw them as far).
We’d like to go back and try again, but first we have to lose that black SUV that’s been following us since Wednesday. Come on, PDGA, what do we have to do to get you to call off the authorities? Can’t you just admit that it’s a Frisbee?