Monday, October 1, 2012

And now, for something completely different ... golf

While the Americans were melting down at Medina yesterday and losing, yet again, the cherished Ryder Cup, I was playing 18 holes with some buddies. I made a rare birdie, five pars and finished with an 87, all while knocking off two stogies (always light one on the first tee and another on the tenth). It was a perfectly enjoyable way to spend five hours (if you count the two beers and lunch afterward), except for the holes where my short game went AWOL.

I must say, I take a little perverse joy in watching American millionaires lose to the chippy Europeans every two years. Some of the younger guys are fun to watch (who wouldn't love a guy called "Bubba" who plays with a pink driver), but the somber, melodramatic Steve Stricker, the unlikable Tiger Woods and the haughty, uptight Davis Love III seem to have forgotten long ago the golf is ... a game. And a pretty silly one, at that.

The Euros have their share of insufferable nincompoops (lighten up, Ian Poulter), but they generally tend to be a more huggable, laid-back bunch. Perhaps that's why they almost always win in this format. Put some dough on the line and the Americans would clean their clocks.

The Euros aren't above lighting up a cigar during a round, and they certainly have celebrating down to a fine art. It's odd that a collection of guys from Ireland, the U.K. Spain, Germany and one of those Scandinavian countries seem tighter-knit than the Americans.

I nominate John Daly as the next American Ryder Cup captain. Now, that would be a fun match to watch.

I attended a Ryder Cup a decade ago -- another European trouncing of America in suburban Detroit -- and the highlight was having a brief interaction with Michael Jordan. At Medina, the constant chants of "USA! USA!" got both old and a little embarrassing. Give it a rest. (It's not nearly as bad as the idiots who always yell "in the hole" after every swing, but it's darn close.)

I reckon there's much second-guessing and gnashing of teeth in the American camp today, though I refuse to read any of it. It's a game. And a pretty silly one at that.

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