Golf News for Tuesday, October 17, 2006 | Daily Golf Blogs

Chris Baldwin: Nick Faldo's no two-faced TV jerk

Tim McDonald wrote an interesting column this week about Nick Faldo suddenly starting to treat people well because of a new TV job. It's a great theory.

Only problem is it's completely wrong. At least, in this particular case.

Nick Faldo was never a jerk. And I have a completely true Baldwin family story to prove it (when fellow blogger Brandon Tucker turns 16, he'll have his own family tales to share).

Around 12-14 years ago my mom was at Oxford taking one of those graduate summer seminars that professionals take as an excuse to hang out in Europe and leave the kids behind. One weekend, she took a bus to get into a real city (sorry, the Oxford area doesn't qualify).

She ended up sitting next to Faldo for a short part of the trip. Yes, he was on the bus, traveling with the people, apparently largely unnoticed in a hat. My mom knows nothing about sports. I think she only recently learned that there are three outs in a baseball inning and that's just because the hometown Detroit Tigers have made a World Series run and everyone in the state is required by law to watch the games.

And my mom knows even less about golf than she does most sports.

So she had no clue who Faldo was. Being my mom, she made polite conversation. Faldo told her he was in the area preparing for a little golf tournament (it happened to be the British Open). Being an English gentleman, he also introduced himself and spent the rest of the ride asking questions about her adult studies.

My mom has multiple sclerosis and when the trip ended, Faldo waited with her, helped her off the bus and got her a cab. He also made sure the driver knew where she was going and wouldn't take her on a fare-pumping tourist ride with some pretty stern words for the cabbie.

When my mom told the story after she returned home, she asked if I'd ever heard of this Nick Faldo guy. Some golfer she said.

That he is. And certainly no jerk.

Nick Faldo is a class act all the way. Always has been. No matter what some whiny pro golfers whose butts he kicked or sportswriters he didn't bow to say.

Surely some athletes do go two-faced nice when they have a chance at those TV checks. Not Nick Faldo, hero of the Baldwin family story.

Next week, Aunt Dorothy Ann's apple pie recipe.

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