Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Patrick Reusse, in a Spot on Satire of Himself

Apparently, during a week which saw countless Favre rumors, some Timberwolf GM rumors, and the Fishing Opener (you may have to live in the Minnesota/Wisconsin are to truly appreciate the importance of that), Patrick Reusse passed over all of those topics for his Sunday column. 

Indeed, truly important things were afoot--plans for a 9 hole Frisbee Golf Course in Patrick's local park. Or, put another way--almost literally, "Hey kids, stay off of my [extended, publicly owned] lawn."

This is a hard column to believe, even for someone like me, who is all too familiar with Reusse's "work".  

The subhead of the column explains for us what kind of jerks these disc-golfers are:  "Walter J. Sochacki Community Park, a beautiful spot in the Twin Cities, is getting cleared out so that 20-somethings with Frisbees can move in."  Except that I, and many many many people who commented on the article can attest--lots of over 25 years old play that particular game.  And even if they didn't, so what?  Do public parks have to cater only to old fat men who write for newspapers?  Is that their stated goal?  I'm not a huge proponent of Disc Golf, by the way.  I play it maybe 4 or 5 times a year, and this is the first time I've ever written about it on this blog.  But something about Reusse makes me want to defend it to the bloody end.

Consider this thoughtful, fair-minded and totally based-on-facts presentation of the what led the city of Robbinsdale to create a new course at Walter J. Sochaki Park (emphasis mine):

Most of the 37 acres sit west of the railroad track that runs north-south through Robbinsdale. Sochacki connects with Mary Hills Nature Area at its southern border with Golden Valley, and that adds another 14 acres of ponds, trees, brush and gulleys to serve wildlife and people searching for a sanctuary...Soon, the young ones will be warned to remain attentive so as not to get hit in the face with a Frisbee...The city of Robbinsdale is about to defile an urban treasure in order to claim the kingly sum of $1,900. That's what was handed over when School District 281 (Robbinsdale, et al.) couldn't figure out what to do with the chump change for "lifelong outdoor recreation activities" that remained from a large grant.

Star-Tribune commenters are a crazy bunch, but the group that responded to this article seem for the most part, pretty reasonable, even as they poke hole after hole in Reusse's account.  Quite a few report that the park is overgrown with buckthorn and other invasive species.  Part of the whole goal of the course is to get rid of some of the overly aggressive underbrush.

Oh, and it should be noted that Reusse has a problem with the very term "disc golf".  It's Frisbee Golf, dammit.  Except (as Reusse implicitly acknowledges later in his column when he mentions Innova discs) Frisbee is a brand name.  Discs are not all made by Frisbee, especially the ones used for disc golf.  

And it wouldn't be Fatty Patty if he didn't use the occasion to knock soccer, for no fucking reason at all.   Calling it "disc golf" you see, isn't about having an accurate name--it is to separate the elitist players from the riff-raff, Blue-Collar, all American Joes that Reusse represents:  "That's the name the aficionados have given to Frisbee golf -- much like American soccer weenies refer to futbol."

Oh, fuck you, Patrick.  Soccer is called Futbol or football everywhere in the world--because it is played with the feet.  How could that be any simpler?  Do you not like it because it sounds too much like America Football, a game so poorly named that the only people who use their feet in contact with the ball are the punter and place kicker?  How fucked tired is that supposed riposte?  People playing with discs aren't going to hurt anyone.  People calling them discs aren't going to hurt anyone.  People who call soccer "futbol" aren't going to hurt anyone.  Responding to imaginary threats against his lifestyle--that's what Patrick Reusse does best.  Because that is all he ever does.

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