the sports section

Swells Enjoy the U.S. Open While They Can

In terms of fans being screwed over by Corporate Sports Industrial Complexes, it’s difficult to get outraged over golf. Its white-collar nature — tickets aren’t just insanely expensive, but sometimes require a club membership for purchase — doesn’t jibe with working-class schlubs bullied by the Man.

Which is why it’s not surprising that, after the USGA made the reasonable but still somewhat unfair decision to shut yesterday’s washed-out ticket holders out of today’s competition, Bethpage Black has been jam-packed with hooting, wild fans all morning, and no wet, furious folks are lined up outside. Even though the tabloids have tried to stir up populist rage, there hasn’t been much evidence of it. Everyone’s just following Tiger and schlepping through mud puddles.

Because the sun is out and probably won’t be tomorrow, they’re going to play as many rounds today as possible, which means those who have tickets for today will likely get double their money’s worth. Still, this could be the first U.S. Open in sixteen years to slide into Monday without a playoff. In the meantime, today while you’re at work, you can watch the tournament at the official U.S. Open site. And because golf is the remaining sport defined by the journalists who cover it, and every journalist feels he must Twitter, your two best bets for perspective are Golf Digest’s Official Tiger Woods tracker and the Twitter debut of Dan Jenkins, generally considered the best living sportswriter (it’s the 200th major he’s covered). You’ll be tempted to shut off the television and just read him.

UPDATE: Responding to “outrage,” the USGA switched course and said anyone who had tickets yesterday can use them for Monday … assuming, of course, there’s golf to be played on Monday.

Swells Enjoy the U.S. Open While They Can