For a long time I've been pretty certain that I'm an asshole. That seems to be becoming more certain with every passing day.
Phil Mickelson surged at the U.S. Open on Sunday, eventually tied for the lead, then pissed the lead away over the last 4 holes.
Old Tits McGee has always been a fan favorite in the greater New York area. Over his career Phil has finished 2nd in the US Open a record setting 5 times. 4 of those times have been on Long Island: twice at Bethpage (2002 and 2009), Shinnecock Hills (2004) and Winged Foot (2006).
He's by all accounts a cool guy. He loves gambling and he loves Vegas. I met him twice at the PGA Tour Event hosted at the course where I grew up working (Castle Pines Golf Club, The International, the tournament where they counted up in points, not down according to par) and he seemed cool.
This year Phil was the odds on sentimental favorite. In May his wife Amy was diagnosed with breast cancer. Much has been made of Phil's struggles to cope with Amy's illness. He should be praised for even gritting out the performance that he managed at Bethpage. His mind was undoubtedly not all there.
All that being said I inexplicably found myself rooting against Phil coming down the stretch in the final round. Why you ask? Am I an asshole? Apparently. Don't I have the heart to pull for the guy? Um normally I thought yes.
Let me explain, from holes 6 through 11 Phil was spraying the ball all over the course. At the US open there is a premium placed on hitting fairways and greens. Phil was out there spraying right, left, long and short. Yet somehow he kept coming up with these unbelieveable breaks of good luck. A good lie here, a straight line to the hole between several trees, etc, etc. What would a normal person say? Yeah, duh, he deserves it. We after the break he got on 10 I couldn't bear it anymore.
He hit a crappy drive then hit his second shot 60 yards left of the green into what was allegedly some of the wickedest shit on the course. At that point Phil had to be thinking "I'm going to have to scramble for double bogey here." Well low and behold his ball comes to rest on a path used by Bethpage employees, not patrons, to access the hospitality tents. Not only a path, but a fantastic lie. Not just a fantastic lie, but sets up perfectly for Phil's left handed swing.
I'm not sure why, but that ridiculously good luck bugged me for some reason.
Does that type of luck sit poorly with anybody else? Oh, no, just me? Yeah, thought so.
All this rambling to say: (1) Best of luck Phil as you and your family go through this challenging time and (2) It's official, I'm an asshole. It's undeniable after the US Open.
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