In an article apparently timed to coincide with the U.S. Open, the NY Times looks at Mayor Bloomberg's relatively recent fondness for golf. While one might assume a billionaire like Bloomberg would have been playing golf for decades, he apparently only started playing in 2000; Staten Island DA Daniel Donovan clarified, "You probably wouldn’t want to call that golf, what he played" then. And City Council Speaker Christine Quinn said, "He is obsessed with it."

These days, Bloomberg tried to keep improving his game:

The billionaire mayor has hired two professional golfers to improve his swing. He has joined exclusive clubs in Bermuda, Maryland, Florida and New York. He purchased a digital simulator to measure the speed of his swing and the distance of his shot.

His security guards sometimes keep his golf clubs in the trunk of his city S.U.V. when Mr. Bloomberg marches in parades, so he can escape to the links afterward. And when the banking system collapsed last September, and Treasury Secretary Henry M. Paulson Jr. needed to reach him on a Sunday, he was patched through to the course where Mr. Bloomberg was playing.

He tries to ask constituents who golfs (at an event a meeting in working-class Carnarsie, no one did) and using it for socializing with politicians and colleagues. OEM Commissioner Joe Bruno recalled, "He insisted that he would hit it. It proved unplayable after a couple of swings. He was not a happy guy. The steam was coming right out of his ears." Donald Trump, though, believes, "If he had more time to play, he’d be a terror." No word on when a putting green will be installed in the City Hall bullpen.