When was the last time it happened to you? Almost every professional golfer, at some point in their career, loses their rose-colored glasses. When was the last time that happened to you? What did it take for you to try to shake your tour’s foundation? Wasn’t the $100 million you made enough for you? Shouldn’t it have been a little bit more?
“Are you a Phil fan or a Tiger fan?” I used to hear junior golfers ask as they were growing up. During post-round chipping competitions, this was a common topic of discussion. Your only point of contention appears to be forcing students to pick between two generations of skill.
All juniors can learn by playing on the best tour in the world against the top players in the world. It’s why Justin Thomas wore pants in junior competitions rather than shorts, because PGA Tour pros don’t compete in shorts. It’s why Patrick Reed, like so many others, chose red and black as his color scheme. It’s why young fantasies take place on the 18th green, in front of a sea of cameras.
As I grew older, my path diverged from that of the lads I used to compete against in chipping contests. And my reality was much different from yours: coach seats and low-cost rentals, rather than luxury jets and courtesy cars. I am envious, but not enraged. I consider myself fortunate to have had the opportunity that I did. Even though my earnings were modest, I enjoy the chance that professional golf provides. I am grateful to have had the opportunity to play a game for a living; so many other women do not.
It’s easy to feel cheated when the women’s game is compared to the men’s game. It’s easy to feel short-changed when comparing men’s golf to other sports. That is something I am aware of. Perspective, on the other hand, is a potent cure to greed.