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Monday, January 30, 2012

The Limerick Summary: 2012 Farmers Insurance Open

Winner: Brandt Snedeker

Around the wider world of golf: It was a week for unexpected victors. Robert Rock showed both Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy how it's done as he got his 2nd European Tour win in a year at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Golf Championship; and Lydia Ko became the youngest winner ever (only 14!) of a professional golf tour event, taking the ALPGA's Bing Lee New South Wales Open by four strokes. She beat a few no-names like Katherine Hull, Melissa Reid, and Laura Davies.

Brandt won a bronze bonsai tree trophy for his win

Apparently when it comes to the world of agriculture, Kyle Stanley doesn't have a green thumb. First Steve Stricker took his John Deere away, then Farmers Insurance foreclosed on him. (I wonder if they cover that?)

It certainly looked like one of those Farmers Insurance University commercials, didn't it? On the outside chance you don't know what I'm talking about, here's the most recent one:



I don't think Stanley would have been more surprised if "obscure space junk" had indeed dropped on him. He probably felt like it had. After getting out to a 7-stroke lead early in the final round, golf happened. A series of unfortunate events -- no relation to the children's books by Lemony Snicket -- came down on him as his ball started wandering all over the course. His lead fell to 3 strokes when he still thought it was 5 shots.

[cue giant hand-cranked jack-in-the-box]

Meanwhile, Brandt Snedeker casually enjoyed the beautiful California seascape. After all, he was 3 strokes off the lead and had no chance of even getting into a playoff.

[cue obscure space junk falling from the sky]

Then came Stanley's disastrous 8 on the final hole that wiped out his lead. Shades of Charles Howell III and Robert Garrigus! A stunned Snedeker was summoned to a playoff with the stunned Stanley, and the stunned audience watched both men in a two-hole playoff nobody expected. And on the second hole Snedeker got a fortuitous bounce off a TV tower, rather than a more likely unfortuitous bounce into the water. Snedeker got up and down, Stanley didn't. Snedeker sympathized -- he's been through this himself, you know -- then smiled and took the trophy and check.

[cue space monkey parachuting down -- "Moving on..."]

To me, the really eerie part of this was that Snedeker actually referenced "this monkey" when talking to Peter Kostis. He clearly meant the old phrase "get the monkey off your back," but the unintended appropriateness of it -- given the context -- was a bit weird even for me.

Kyle Stanley will win eventually -- he's too good not to. But this victory belongs to Brandt Snedeker, who collected the check from Farmers Insurance (they clearly covered that) and thus receives this shiny new Limerick Summary to go with his bonsai trophy -- an artificial tree that doesn't care whether you have a green thumb or not:
The Farmers was not kind to Stanley;
His three-shot lead should have won grandly.
Then SHOCK! Two holes later
His putter turned traitor
And Snedeker beat him quite handily.
The photo came from the PGATOUR.com home page.

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