I’ll admit that I’m as much as fan of good golf as anyone reading this piece. I didn’t watch a single shot from this year’s Ryder Cup, but I like to think (thanks to the tournament website) that I didn’t miss a moment. I felt for the match losers and winners, knowing in my soul that anyone who enters the arena, emerges victorious … no matter the outcome.
I read the accusations bandied about in the media, as though a crime had been committed or someone’s honor had been compromised … and I laughed in that sadly ironic way that such notions can evoke. After all, who are we, the bystanders, to render judgement on someone’s worth or merit. Simply put, we aren’t.
The Ryder Cup, for me, is like any other competition. Anywhere from 1 to 100 participants voluntarily swear to offer fair competition to their opponents and to accept the spotlight rendered by those unable to engage. In this case, 24 of the world’s finest golfers competed for three days over 18 holes of a midwestern USA golf course, with Europe emerging victorious by 1.5 points.
Many matches were close, a certain number turned due to this break or that. Depending on your perspective or allegiance, the breaks were great or foul ones. No single player mad any effort to sabotage another’s (or his own) effort. In the end, a competition was fairly waged, fairly won, fairly lost. It behooves us all to submit to competition from time to time, to recall the feelings of tension and pressure that accompany the clash.