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What if Larry David were Ryder Cup captain?

Golf Digest logo Golf Digest 9/17/2015 Golf Digest

© Emily Shur
Southern California golf is ubiquitous in the television series "Curb Your Enthusiasm." The weather is perfect, but a storm is always brewing when the lead character bumps against the game's social norms. Whether he's facing country-club expulsion for not cleaning his locker or exile for precipitating a slow player's death, the star's passion for golf never wavers. We invited Larry David and his good friend Bill Scheft (staff writer for David Letterman and the nephew of legendary golf writer Herbert Warren Wind) for a round at Winged Foot. All afternoon, Larry's lanky strut and creative cursing could be recognized from two fairways over. Here, the co-creator of "Seinfeld" answers questions from Scheft.

EVER PLAYED WITH ANY GUYS FROM THE PGA TOUR? In charity tournaments, I've played with Phil Mickelson, Keegan Bradley, Rickie Fowler, among others. Mickelson would describe what club he was going to use, and why. And he was all about what the grass will do. Keegan Bradley hit a tee shot, and I said, "Nice shot." He looked at me, and I said, "I guess that's like saying to Willie Mays, 'Nice catch.'"

WHAT HAVE YOU DONE TO IMPROVE YOUR GAME? Golf is the only sport where you can practice every day for six months and not get any better. The swing is unnatural. You can spot a good golfer a mile away. There's a supreme air of confidence that's sickening. They have a swagger that just reeks of good golf. They're immaculate. There's not a crease. There's not a stain. You can take a microscope over the outfit, and you will not find a dot. Often there's a part in the hair.

Read more: Jordan Spieth Fires Back at Larry David's Bald Comment

WHAT KIND OF RYDER CUP CAPTAIN WOULD YOU BE? My thoughts on the Ryder Cup are public knowledge. If it's against one country, fine. If it's against China or Russia, fine. But you're telling me our archenemy is Europe? They're our NATO allies! And why all this importance placed on the captain? What's he doing? He's picking the teams like we did in the schoolyard. And they revel in that captain title. It's all very maritime.

"Captain Watson, a word ... I feel I should tell you... the men and I are not pleased with your performance. I know you've spent a lot of time with the pairings, but we want to play with our chums. I'm very keen on Bradley, and yet you have me paired with Fowler, whose hat I find disconcerting. I cannot abide that hat."

"Are you countermanding my orders?"

"Captain, if I may ... "

"No, you may not! I've made my decision. There'll be no going back."

"Fine. I'll play with Fowler and that flat-billed spectacle he fancies. If you want to suffer the ignominy of losing to our former 18th-century oppressors, let it be on your head."

IF YOU WERE THE MOST POWERFUL MAN IN GOLF, WHAT WOULD YOU DO? Two things. I would retroactively award Roberto De Vicenzo the 1968 Masters. They should have never let that happen. Everyone saw the leader board. It's a clerical error. Bob Goalby should have said, "No, you take it." Not a day goes by when I don't feel sorry for poor Mr. De Vicenzo. Second, I would outlaw the white leather belt. How could you not have a problem with that? It's a major distraction. It's disco.

Read David's entire interview here, on

© Emily Shur

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