Im not a Hollywood movie mogul. As a matter of fact, Im not even an entertainment buff of any sort. Sure, I read People magazine, but only because it has the only crossword puzzle I can handle. The fact is that I couldnt possibly name the most famous character actor in the world. In golf, however, I could. Its easy. Its you.
Lets get serious here. Youve won a grand total of two tournaments in your career. One was the Disney'a tournament that most players skip unless their kids or their wives tell them they cant, or they need to play out of the desperation of trying to keep their cards. And the other was a biggy. It was the World Match Play. The only tournament Tiger has won this year. Remember that one? Yea, it was the one where you chipped in to beat Andrew Magee. It was the same one that gave the pundits fuel in their crusade against any match play event'proving that TV ratings matter and that your victory justifies their cause.
Would you knock it out?
Get over it. The fact is that your claim to fame is, and is always supposed to be, that shot at the Masters the hit the lip of the bunker that came back and hit you in the chest. What are you doing? Are you trying to prove that youre deserving of a starring role. Are you trying to prove that three Ryder Cups and one Presidents Cup werent a fluke? Who are you kidding?
Here you go again, contending in the U.S. Open. Are we to believe that you actually have a chance to win the Open? Surely you jest.
Just out of curiosity, how do you continue to do it? How do you keep teasing us? How do you constantly find a way to get your name on the first page of the leaderboard at the majors, yet disappear the rest of the time? Please, do explain.
Phil Mickelson is supposed to win. Absent any Tiger heroics, Phil is the only one at the top that carries Americas hopes in their championship. Sure, Funk is there. And after that, what do we have? Pavin? Pat Perez? Mayfair? Beyond them, its Haas, and Stadler'Kevin that is. Now thats comfort.
You cant win. You dont win. You never win. Or could you?
The U.S. Open in 1986 at Shinnecock was your first professional golf tournament. Your first professional tournament after graduating from Texas A&M University. The first professional tournament you played in what was destined to be a dubious career. Dubious. Now thats a fitting characterization of your accomplishments thus far.
Annoying would be another potential characterization. Annoying in that you are as persistent as a cicada every 17 years. Annoying in that avid golf fans dont know a thing about you outside your persistent bent on major contention.
Can you do it this time? Do you not have what it takes to be a headliner?
Youve appeared in just about every epic weve witnessed. We picture your throw-back reverse-C perfect-tempo swing in all of our golf dreams. We continually wonder if theres any substance to the iron-Byron that emerges as reliably as allergies in the spring. We continually wonder whether or not you can get it done this time or if this time is the last time well have to wonder if youll traverse into the landscape of promising players that never got it done. Which is it? Make up your mind, would you?
Is this your time? Is this your long-overdue 15 minutes?
As a fan of golf, I hope so. If for no other reason than the fact that youve proven that you deserve nothing less. You dont do what youve done without deserving it. The respect that has eluded you in the mainstream media is owed. Its never too late to be the star.
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