Monday, June 16, 2008

Mediate A Liar, But That's A "Gentleman's Game" For You

Rocco Mediate is a liar.

That's OK -- we've all spurned the truth when it suits our needs. We've all fibbed -- or told one stinking whopper -- either out of desperation, spite, or convenience.

But few of us have spoken into a microphone and lied so blatantly as Mediate did yesterday after watching his dream of winning golf's U.S. Open take a severe hit. Mediate was grabbed by the NBC folks, just moments after Tiger Woods sunk a 12-foot birdie putt to force an 18-hole playoff today. And he was asked if he was rooting for Woods to miss the putt, thus making Mediate the champion.

"I never root for someone to miss," Mediate fibbed. "You can never root for a guy to miss a putt," he then added -- the stinking whopper.

Um, for that kind of purse, that kind of first-place dough -- you bet your Big Bertha you can root for a guy to miss.

I know, golf is supposed to be a gentleman's game. It would, therefore, appear to be unseemly to wish a cup-lipping or a skate past the hole on your opponent.

But is it, really, with that kind of notoriety and cash on the line?

Second-place finishers don't go home with an empty wallet -- I know that. But at the same time, no one -- NO ONE -- remembers much about who Placed more than a day or two after the event. Mediate might be different, only because if Woods wins -- maybe better said when Woods wins -- it will have occurred in a playoff, and that might buy Rocco some more love. But he will still have lost -- and that's pretty much all that matters.

Mediate is 45 and his time for winning a major is dwindling. Not that Woods cares. Woods, apparently, is no liar -- no Rocco Mediate in that sense.

When asked if he felt even the least bit sorry for Mediate, Woods had a one-word, honest reply.

"No," he said flatly.

Gentleman's game, indeed!

There was at least some shred of truth to something Mediate said. As NBC replayed the tourney-tying putt and the aftershock, one of the clips was of Mediate, with sound.

"I knew he'd make it," Mediate said, his mouth tightening.

"He's Tiger Woods!" someone chimed in.

No lie.

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