Tampa Bay Sports Day

SEELY: Ryder Cup Came Across as the Usual Embarrassment

What was THAT? It looked like a duck, walked like a duck and quacked like a duck, but the Ryder Cup came across as the usual bi-annual embarrassment.

What used to be a great showcase for the game has been turned into a giant, overblown affair that brings out the worst in everyone.

One of the worst is Danny Skillet’s brother, who caused Tuesday excitement when he was quoted as describing Americans as lower than a Basket of Deplorables. Must be a rough character but, judging from what we saw on television, he might have been right.

At what other sports event does one of the team leaders have to go into the crowd and ask them to behave?

If you were there, it may have been better that what we saw, of course. Television loves to show off the showoffs, particularly those who preen for the cameras. In football, they follow low-lifes like Odell Beckham Jr. In golf, the camera always seems to follow me-firsters like Patrick Reed, who seems to be positioning himself as a worthy successor to Tiger Woods.

We saw and heard plenty of bad behavior from the galleries. There was open rooting for the foreigners to miss putts, applause when they hit into bad places and crass comments when they got close enough to the players.

TV lapped it up with announcers marveling over the “high energy” of the crowds. “High,” for sure. “Energy” might be disputed.

Why do we do things like this to ourselves? All the work that our government does to make other nations like us! All the fine speeches to the United Nations. All the dollars. Sending out crappy soccer teams so we don’t get in their faces in the only sport many of them have.

And what do we do when we have a chance to really show what nice folks we are? We do what you saw last week, fielding a team with more than a few loudmouths, using a mediocre course set up for birdies as our showcase, and allowing what seemed to be half of Minnesota storm the gates and the beer stands.

U.S.A.! U.S.A.!

Unsavory Americans, perhaps?