Friday, May 22, 2009

Michelle Wie, Mickelson flip-flops. Also identifying poisonous hazards and a day just for golf?

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Another Sunday another myriad of mishaps, this time at the Sybase Classic. Just chalk it up to more experience for Michelle Wie. With the press and fans clamoring for a win, all MW can do at this point is to offer up hope that, one day, things will be different, that one day she will break through barriers and the world will rejoice.

"I'm trying my hardest out there. Most importantly, I'm having fun," claimed Wie, knowing that she once again had to defend her fragile ego as computer keyboards eagerly clicked out another story similar to the last.

At, waiting for Wie to "just do it", writer Michael Walker Jr. was forced to wax creative, coming up with a comparison between Wie and pre-Masters winner Phil Mickelson. Where a correlation can be made between any two likely suspects, Walker mentions that both golfers are "massively talented, adored by fans while generating mixed feelings among fellow pros (and) capable of an amazing, tell-your-friends-about-it birdie or a what-was-she-thinking bogey on virtually every hole."

Phil Politi added in the Star Ledger that both Wie and Mickelson "thrill and disappoint all at the same time."

Flip-flop feelings of highs and lows, ups and downs, of coming close yet falling short is what makes fans observe both golfers in spite of what is to come. We will groan, we will probably shout at the television, "come on, even I could have dropped that putt" but we will watch hoping for a miracle shot and for the day that Michelle Wie wins an event. She will win, it is just a matter of time.

One difference between the two which separates us from Michelle but makes us feel for Mickelson is that Phil resembles "everyman", the guy that is just like us, the underdog struggling for a win, a regular Joe.

Perhaps fans feel a bit of distance from Michelle because of the way she attained fortune and sponsorships without ever having won an event. Her professional etiquette is also still lacking as it was noted that Wie still walks off of the green before the final putt of her competitors has been holed out. Mickelson proved himself early on at the Northern Trust Open, one of only four golfers ever to win as an amateur and always provides a professional demeanor. We're still waiting for Michelle to lift a trophy and hope that she will gain propriety as well.

Eagerly watched by fans, disliked by fellow golfers, both players have helped their respective tours gain and retain an audience. LPGA players were angry that Wie preferred the PGA Tour to the LPGA and, according to GQ Magazine, Mickelson was considered one of the Ten Most Hated Athletes with fellow golfers nicknaming him "FIGJAM".

Love them or hate them, if it were not for "flip-flops" there would only be fairways and greens with no struggle needed to achieve greatness. Michelle Wie is now earning valuable points towards joining the prestigious Solheim Cup team and Mickelson is working out the kinks for the upcoming Colonial. If they both succeed, we will applaud; fail and the tabloids, internet and fans will have something more to talk about!

This week's Golf for Beginners offers advice from Phil Mickelson on the flop shot. The video below was chosen to show Lefty's ingeniuty and the ability to think outside the box.

Also discussed is the importance of National Golf Day and what you can do to bring it about. helps us to identify poisonous plants so that we don't have to add Calomine lotion to our shopping lists!

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Photo Credit: ©, Marco Garcia, File/AP Photo

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