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The Loop

US Open Contest

April 18, 2008

Kurt Rightmyer of Los Osos, California, is one of many readers to question our Final Five choices in the US Open Contest. We've heard that their handicaps are too low (see previous posts here) and that we haven't made a big enough deal of their essays (which indeed are printed under their Finalists Gallery photos in the voting area). But Kurt has a different take on things:

I just read > Newsweek's new article about how divorce has become the norm in America. Sadly that's the average nowadays, but thankfully that's not the case for any of your Final Five "average" golfers, all of whom have been happily married for about a dozen years. Also, tens of millions of seniors play golf in this country, but I don't recall seeing any gray on the heads of your "average" golfers. Did you photoshop the pictures?

Let me take those comments one at a time. First, "happily married" was not a requirement. I know some divorced guys who are perfectly "average" golfers. But you make an interesting observation. The golfing life, for better and for worse, seems to attract and (one might argue) nurture the traditional family, despite all of its golf-widow jokes. Advertisers please take note.

On your second point, it's also the game of a lifetime, and that means millions of kids who have become seniors are still avid. Thousands of them entered the contest. While we're not guilty of photoshoping, you're right, we did chose five fellows who are far from their first Social Security check. We just thought their stories--their essays, their golf, their connection to the game--fit the bill. But from one senior (I think) to another--you must be, or you wouldn't be this wise--we're doing it again next year!

--Bob Carney