Let's stop comparing exclusive Oakmont Country Club to hard-working Pittsburgh steel workers during U.S. Open week, please
The U.S.G.A. also announced this week the 2014 Open will be held at Pinehurst No. 2 - public as well.
It’s a good move, considering it’s the US “Open". I like the idea of hosting America’s tournament on a course anyone can call up for a tee time. That’s how the British Open is. The Scottish venues are clubs, but anyone can make a few phone calls and get a tee time, whether it’s St. Andrews or Turnberry.
A metaphor has been thrown around a bit recklessly this week by the media. I’ve seen it especially on the Golf Channel a little too much: likening Oakmont Country Club and what it will take to win here and the blue collar work ethic of the nearby Steel City.
Oakmont was a club that was founded to be a golfer’s club - not a black tie affair with golf course attached - so that’s where this relationship seems to be coming from.
Relating the two sounds great read off the prompter and makes for glossy TV packages, mixing shots with the course and city skyline. I’m pretty sure the same thing is said each year the Open is at Oakland Hills near Detroit, even though it’s in one of the nation’s wealthiest counties, well north of the Rouge plant.
But lets remember these industrial workers aren’t welcome to play Oakmont unless invited. They probably don’t have the $75,000 initiation fee either in their cookie jars either.
Instead, these hard-hatters are at the munis or drinking in a dive bar somewhere. They sure aren’t at Oakmont: an old school, elite country club. Maybe not as stuffy as Augusta National, but few clubs in America think as egocentrically as here.
Look at the way officials handled cutting down the nearly 4,000 trees since the mid-90s. At times, they knocked them down in the middle of the night without telling anyone in the community. Sneaky, right? It’s being praised this week.
“That’s Oakmont,” everyone laughs.
What they do with their trees I’m fine with. It’s their club. There are plenty of trees in western Pennsylvania. Don’t think I’m asking Oakmont to change their ways, I’m questioning the accuracy of some of these TV scripts. I’m just not buying the whole “blue collar” stuff we’re being sold, and I’m sure we haven’t seen the last of it.
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There's a sympathetic thought...after their pathetic days in their pathetic places of employment, they head to a pathetic place to drown their sorrows. Such pathetic lives for these steel workers. What is this, Dickens? Sinclair?
What is the state of Pittsburgh's munis? Does it have any? They have a number of well-to-do CCFAD courses, but I don't know what their muni system shapes up to be.
Come to think of it, what is the shape of the steel industry? Any plants still open? Any forges still firing? Any hard hats still worn?
You're right on BT. Good swing.
Ron Mon - you caught me, I think I've been watching that Invincible movie too many times.
not the stuffed shirt you are depicting at all. I feel you are judging a book by it's cover a bit due to the steep cost of membership. My boss, actually bosses have blue collar work ethics that would surprise you and if you saw some of the filthy mud and dead fish and extreme heat, I doubt YOU would venture into this area. My boss was in there without hesitation, and stayed until we were done doing what we were doing. Your point is taken. The majority of members probably dont even cut their own grass but I think you should know that I know one member who has done and does jobs that most wouldn't.