Reader: How old is Michelle Wie? A real rumor or Astroturf? Plus, WorldGolf.com prepares a big announcement
For a 16-year-old, Michelle Wie had a tough week that saw her out of contention at the Women’s British Open while getting penalized two shots, followed by a much-debated firing of her caddie, Greg Johnston. Of course, it won’t stop there, as one reader even questions if she’s 16:
“All I hear about is that her mistakes are understandable because she is just sixteen years old, but is she? I am hearing rumors that she is older than this. Rumors that state, that in the past, every tournament she had to show a birth certificate in she with drew from the tournament. Can you somehow verify if the romors (sic) are true or not?” writes reader Ann Schlosser.
As for Wie’s age, I can safely say I haven’t heard any rumors and think she has always looked her age, and have to wonder if that was the type of post that Bill Wolfrum was referring to in his weird blog about Astroturf …
Speaking of weird blogs, stay tuned for a BIG announcement here next week for a new WorldGolf.com contest that will have readers making some news of their own, among other things. Stay tuned …
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We are not in some 4th world country Ann Schlosser where birth certificates can be faked or bought. And you sound very stupid asking such questions and thereby giving validity to such rumors
And you too Dot with your attention grabbing headline. Try good journalism for a change
You people are really pathetic
After all the anti-asian rhetoric you've been spewing, you turn to Dot for consolation? Some gaul. Dot must be a lot nicer than I am. (see Wolfrum's astroturf blog for a partial list of Alex's ethnic slurs)
As to Michelle's age and birth certificate - It was widely reported that Michelle Wie got her driver's license from the State of Hawaii last year on the Tuesday after the SONY Open. Seems to me that motor vehicles departments are real fussy about date of birth, and proof of such, and so on.
I would say Schlosser's remark was probably just an error. Now if Ms. Schlosser camps out on your blog and tries to put a negative spin on each and every mention of Michelle Wie's name; well, then she's probably spreading Astroturf.
In defense of Kathy and your statement relating to Danny Almonte. Yes he was playing for a team from the Bronx, but he was born in the Dominican Republic, which is where the fake birth certificate was created. So I'd say your reference just proves her statement.
Interesting comment. The following comes from Wikipedia:
East Asian age reckoning is a concept used in East Asian countries originating in China. Several East Asian cultures, such as Chinese, Japanese, Korean, and Vietnamese, share a traditional way of counting a person's age. Newborns start at one year old, and each passing of a New Year, rather than the birthday, adds one year to the person's age. This system is still widely used in China and Korea, but less common in other countries.
Michelle is 16.........in Korea, however, she is 17...........In Korea........you are one year old as soon as you are born............so everyone there is always a year older than they are to the rest of the world........"
That is true Boola and Ghet, they also follow the Chinese calendar, so they turn one year older when Chinese New Year is observed.
When an individual immigrates to the USA from one of these countries they must have their actual birth date as recorded on a birth certificate.
I had edited out the info (above) about my limited Korean and Chinese "language skills", as it didn't seem germane at the time of the original posting. Most of the conversation was conducted in their languages, primarily because they were kind enough to permit it.
Here is the prior post mentioned:
Thank you for your carefully considered insights into Korean-American culture. One of the most intriguing elements of the Wie story is the cross-cultural impact she is already having. Her family has shown wisdom in encouraging her to study Korean, Japanese, and Chinese, in addition to her native English. (In my household we claim her as an All-American girl). She'll be a valued ambassador throughout Asia and beyond for years to come.
At lunch yesterday I had a rather serious-looking Korean waitress and a bored-looking Chinese busboy. Neither spoke much English. The busboy was in his teens and the waitress was in her 50's. I asked "do you know Michelle Wie?" Both of their faces lit up instantly. You could feel the pride. "Very good golfer!" the woman beamed. I then asked, "Do you know Se Ri Pak?" They responded, "Is she good too?"
There is something happening with MW that transcends most any sport story that I've ever seen. I feel sorry for those who are unable to enjoy it. I'm having a ball watching the saga unfold."
Ghet Rheel, Since you're on a binge of re-posting again and again, several things I posted tongue-in-cheek, here's a suggestion for you. Why don't you re-post your gem about the fifty something Korean waitress and the Chinese busboy? While you're at it, maybe you could explain how you knew by casual observation that the waitress was Korean and the busboy was Chinese. You were careful not to refer to either person as Korean-American or Chinese-American. How can you tell a person's ethnicity and country of citizenship just by looking at him or her?"
Alex it is fairly easy to tell what area an Asian person is from, if you observe their features, mannerisms or how they dress. All it takes is spending some time around Asian people. If they speak, many times I not only can determine what country they come from, but the region of that country they were raised in while growing up. In the USA we do not all speak alike; we have regional accents and patterns of speech that give insight to where we were raised. The same thing can be said for all countries around the World. For example French spoken in Paris is much different than French spoken in southern France and the same can be said about other European countries. Asian countries are no different Alex and I'll give you an example;
Thie Philippines is made up of over 7,000 islands and a common language binds the population, Tagalog. The population will speak and write this language in school, but when they return home they will speak in their regional dialect. If you travel to Cebu a province in the Southern Philippines, you will speak Visayian or Cebuano. This is the case on every island in the chain, with some such as Mindanao having hundreds of regional dialects.
I'm surprised you didn't notice this in Vietnam Alex, where hundreds of different dialects are spoken in a relatively small country.
There is only one common Worldwide Language I have discovered while living and working around the world Alex; NBA Basketball. Everyone on the planet knows about the Chicago Bulls and Michael Jordan. Many of them think Michael is still playing with the Bulls and I've seen more Michael Jordan, Bulls game shirts than I could ever count. If I were to ask them if they knew about Tiger Woods the golfer, many people would say yes and then ask if he played for the Bulls with Michael Jordan. They may not know who is in-charge of their country at the moment, but they all know Sir Michael. :-)
In my judgement, the quite lovely Korean woman appeared to me to be in her mid-fifties. I could be wrong about her age, but I don't think so.
Again, weak effort at casting a pall and introducing obfuscation on your part.
There is another point to consider in Ms. Schlosser's question. I asked a friend who was raised in Korea (and who has lived in a Hawaiian Korean community) for his thoughts. He explained that if the Wie family was strictly traditional, that a "Korean Family Register" may have been used in Hawaii to record MW's birth in lieu of a Birth Certificate. These registers called "hojeok deungbon" (typically written in Chinese characters) are legal documents in both Korea and the U.S. This could explain the contention that MW did not provide an Anglican "Birth Certificate" in some amateur events."
When a young player joins their local chapter of the Junior Amateur USGA, they present a birth certificate at joining. The local chapter is the sponsor of the amateur in any USGA sanctioned event they play in after registration. This eliminates the requirement to produce a birth certificate at each event.
Good point. However, at some point early in MW's amateur days, she may have been without a certified translation of a "hojeok deungbon". Your point confirms that all this would have been cleared up before she started competing in USGA sanctioned events. Getting her driver's license is a further indication that any issues regarding date of birth have long since been resolved.
Any more riddles for us, Dot?
She would need that same birth certificate to get enrolled in school, get a passport, a social security card, drivers license, etc., all of which she obviously has.
As for any age discreprancy, Ghet Rhee says she got her drivers license the day after the SONY Open and the Hawaii DMV is very strict. Sure they are. But that doesn't mean the birth certificate they looked at didn't show that she was 17 or 18, not 16. I tend to believe she actually IS 16, just abnormally tall.
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