Dustin Johnson may be one of the best golfers in the business, but he always considers superstitions every time he steps on the golf course. According to Sports broadcast, Johnson appeared on the Preliminary podcast in May 2021, and here he explained that he still uses quarters as ball markers. However, they can’t be just any old neighborhood: they have to be neighborhoods from the 1960s, ideally so it always lands in the 1960s when playing golf.
Understandably, podcast hosts were baffled by this, but Johnson then doubled down via Twitter when he tweeted a close-up photo of one of these quarters, showing it dates from 1965. “I use a quarter, always with my head held high,” Johnson said on the podcast. “It must be a year in the ’60s. So I only use the quarters from the’ 60s.” He then added, “Well, don’t you want to shoot in the ’60s? That’s not necessarily a goal. Just good numbers.” Finally, he said: “My goal is never, ‘Okay, I want to shoot 65 or 66.’ I try to shoot as low as possible every day.”
Interestingly, science can support this superstition. According to Something borrowed, quarters from 1965, for example, weigh a bit more due to the higher percentage of silver they contain. For comparison, a 1965 quarter weighs 6.25 grams, while newer quarters, made with more nickel, weigh only 5.65 grams. In a sport where weight, distance, wind, etc. are all success factors, understanding these factors is of the utmost importance. Of course, that might overanalyze some silly superstition. In any case, it’s just fascinating to put yourself in the head of a professional.