How to hold your own U.S. Open

In a sense, the U.S. Open golf tournament is like one of those multi-car pileups on the interstate.
You know it’s bad, but you just can’t look away from it.
Whether it’s the crazy length of the rough off the fairway or in the high scores that some of the best golfers in the world post during the four-day event, the average duffer might feel slightly better about how they fare out on the course.
As I was watching the tournament this past weekend, which was won by England’s Justin Rose with a score of +1, my mind started to wander about how hard it is to compete in the U.S. Open.
Though there have been occasions where the tournament is won with a high sub-par score, such as Tiger Woods’ triumph in 2000 or Rory McIlroy’s coming out party two years ago, it often is a survival of the fittest as to who comes out on top.
Heck, the event leader may wither away on the final hole on the Sunday, which is what happened in Phil Mickelson’s implosion in 2006 at Winged Foot.
Unfortunately, none of us will have a chance of teeing off in a major tournament like the U.S. Open, let alone be lucky to attend one.
So I’ve come up with an idea that is the closest thing to taking on the challenges of a course like the Merion Golf Club, without asking your local golf course owner to change everything about their 18-hole layout.
I call it city golf.
Granted, I’m slightly stealing this concept from an old “Wayne & Shuster” sketch from the 1970s, where the comedy duo golfed through the streets of downtown Toronto. But this one has some difference.
(I just realized that some of our younger readers probably have never heard of “Wayne & Shuster.” Kids, go ask your parents. You might learn a thing or two about historic Canadian television).
What you have to do is find an abandoned field, mainly from an old school or any old building that is run down and no longer owned by anyone, which is important as you don’t want anybody to chase you off their property with a pitchfork.
If the grass hasn’t been cut in a few months (or possibly years), you will have a good idea of what the rough is like for the top pros at the U.S. Open.
I will mention, though, that getting the ball out of that area with a wedge could be a bit of a problem, as your club probably will turn into more of a weed-wacker instead of its original intention as a ball-striking device.
I still need to flesh out this concept, especially when it comes to actually forming a green to putt on, but I think it has legs.
Plus, if golfing in long grass doesn’t tickle your fancy, you always can travel out to the prairie during an windy day and try to smack a ball with your driver in what probably is the closet thing to taking part in the British Open.
These are the types of thoughts that kept me from the good schools.
But in all seriousness, we should give those who compete in the U.S. Open a ton of credit since we probably still would be trying to complete the front nine in comparison to what they accomplish over the course of 72 holes.