Can't tell if he's joking? Of course you can't We live in America, "where irony tends to fly over heads at Concorde height," according to James. Unfortunately, the fun stops when James gets to the final day at Brookline, when the U.S. stormed from behind to win the Cup. There's no irony in his declaration that gallery misbehavior and excessive celebrating by the American players made Day Three "the ugliest day in the game's history...the day the Ryder Cup about died of shame."
From our side of the Atlantic the indictment appears flawed. James makes no distinction between the loutish behavior of a small minority of Brookline spectators—denounced by the U.S. players and media alike—and the actions of the players themselves. He refuses to accept that the European camp has hurt American feelings at past Ryder Cups by celebrating victory by singing soccer anthems and cheering wildly in the press center. Most damning of all, James refuses to credit the apologies of U.S. captain Ben Crenshaw and a number of American players. James even dismisses a conciliatory letter from Tom Lehman as "not much better than a waste of ink."
No matter. Into the Bear Pit is a slap-slap-slap to American golf, and it behooves us to blink and swallow and say, "Thanks, we needed that." As for James, he should turn to page 30 and consider this sentence, which apparently flew at Concorde height over his head: "When you are an ex-captain, people will always listen to you, but I think you are better off keeping your mouth shut."
Must be a typo.
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