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What's Whiter than Golf and "Horse Girls"?
What white people do in their spare time
Author’s note: After publishing this, the graphic in this article ended up making the front page of Reddit and that was really cool!
If you're anything like me you've probably wondered, "What do white people actually do for fun?" Are their weekends just golf and skiing if they're on the rich end? Building decks and fishing if they're more working class? Is there a lot of bocce ball involved?
These are exactly the kinds of meaningless questions that get me excited!
I wasn't sure if there would be any way to figure this out empirically. But the whole point of this Substack is computational takes on things that don't mean anything to anybody. And this topic is exactly that! So, goddamnit, I had to try for my beloved, nonexistent readers.
And lucky for us, it seems our tax dollars have been hard at work to help us answer this exact question without us even knowing it. The US Consumer Product Safety Commission apparently collects data on emergency room visits involving all consumer products. The National Electronic Injury Surveillance System (NEISS). And if we make the very believable assumption that all races seem to hurt themselves at the same rate doing the same activities, then we can repurpose this data to tell us what exactly it is white people do on the weekends.
This also assumes that all races are equally as likely to go into the hospital for a given injury. Now, I have seen about a half dozen stand up comedy sketches that would indicate that this is not the case, but we're gonna make the assumption anyway. All data work is built on tenuous assumptions. If you think this is a bad one, then boy do I have some bad news for you about the entire field of economics...
I am only going to show you the list of activities where at least 9 in 10 people who reported injured were white. To put that number in context: only 89.1% of the golf injuries and 89.2% of the horseback riding injuries turned out to be white people. So, every activity on this list is both whiter than golf and whiter than the infamous "horse girl." Feel free to call this the "Whiter than Golf" or "Whiter than Horse Girls" Index if you wish (I do).
Without further ado, I present to you the empirically whitest activities people get injured doing:
“Whiter Than Golf” Index
Now, I would like to be very clear, I filtered out all activities where less than 20 white people got injured. So, it is pretty astounding that skeet shooting still came out at 100%! 26 white men, 6 white women, and nobody else. This data was collected from a representative sample of 100 of the nations 5,000+ hospitals. So, some back of the envelope math would indicate that something like 1,600 people per year are injured skeet shooting, and almost all of them will end up being white.
The rest of the list kind of speaks for itself. The different forms of hockey and skiing making appearances on the list is unsurprising. A lot of the activities look like they'd be in the backdrop of a Carhartt workwear commercial which didn't shock me too much, except for one item. I'd never personally thought of tarps as a very white thing, but it seems that they might be.
The more you know.
The coming articles will attempt to estimate just how many broken fingers are on the field at one time during the Super Bowl, why GameStop’s valuation could be stupider, and how Wall Street’s (arbitrary) “best practice” portfolio rules might be de-stabilizing governments in developing countries
Email/Twitter DM me with dumb article ideas that you'd want to see or just to let me know that you liked it (or hated it I guess?).
Please keep in mind that this is all in good fun. We're all just stuck inside and need a good laugh at the Zoom water cooler. Hopefully this can be that for you.
I've limited this article to just the "whitest" injuries, but subscribe to my mailing list and if you'd be interested in seeing some of these other lists for men, women, and other ethnicities.