Tom Watson, the Moon Landing, and Character


When I first thought of blogging about the historic coincidence of Tom Watson’s feats in The Open Championship and the 40th Anniversary of the first moon walk, I thought it was going to be easy.  Two great events, one nostalgic, one invoking nostalgia, should provide interesting and attractive blog fodder.

Bogging is almost never easy.

In terms of historical significance, the moon landing and ranks right up there with the invention of the alphabet.  That, too, was “one giant leap for mankind”.  Both advanced humanity exponentially on history’s timeline.

On the face of it, Watson’s feat, though not a feat for all mankind (after all, how many of us can drive a golf ball straight and true?), fell short of having a lasting significance, but does much for the human spirit of accomplishment and achievement.  We may not remember his magnificent march to the cusp of golf immortality, but we will remember his masterful use of consistent effort and determination.  Hope stirred in us all as he stood over the Claret Cup clinching putt and hope was transformed into disappointment as the eight foot putt died just inches short of everlasting glory. 

And that is the only thing that Neil Armstrong has over Tom Watson.  Armstrong has the everlasting glory and Watson has the un-extinguishable effort and determination.

Both inspire and embody greatness.

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