The following is a hypothetical letter that Ernie Els wrote to Jordan Spieth after his collapse on No. 12 during the final round of the Master’s. This is a very fake letter.
Dear Mr. Spieth,
Hello. My name is Theodore Ernest Els, you may have heard of me before. My friends call me Ernie, but never Big Ern (I love Bill Murray and all, I just am not a big fan of Kingpin). Anyway, I played in the same golf tournament as you last week, how cool is that? I would have been at the Champion’s dinner, but unfortunately I’ve never actually been a champion at Augusta. I almost did it back in 2004 (you weren’t even a teenager then, how neat is that?), but some doof named Phil Mickelson stole the title from me.
Anyway, I’m writing this letter to thank you very much for what you did on Sunday. You see, until you hit that ball into the water and then dropped in that weird spot and then hit another ball into the water and then dropped again and then hit the next shot into the bunker and then took a quadruple bogey, I had been the attention of the media.
I’m going through this tough thing where I can’t putt once I get inside three feet. I used to just blame it on spike marks around the hole or an unfixed ball mark, then I came to Augusta where the greens are perfect in every possible way and things went south very quickly for me.
I’m not sure if you saw (I played 16 groups behind you so you were already at -4, setting the course on fire, figuratively of course), but on the first day of the tournament I had a pretty tough time on the first hole.
It started off innocently enough, I missed the green left then chipped to just inside three feet and tipped my hat at the adoring fans. Then, a funny thing happened. I missed the putt to the left a little bit. Oh well, haha. Then I missed another putt. Then I missed another putt. I stopped and smiled because I’m known as an easy-going guy. I stepped back up, then I missed another putt. This one was closer though, so I just stepped up and tapped it with one hand, but guess what? I missed that putt too. I finally just shoveled the ball into the hoop. I’m pretty sure it was an illegal stroke but who is going to tell a guy that just six-putted that he needs to add another stroke because one of them didn’t follow the rules.
They listed it as a 10 and said I seven putted all day long, and honestly I couldn’t tell you the difference. It’s like when you are out drinking with your friends and you think you took seven shots but then you don’t vomit so you figure it must have just been six. You kind of lose track.
I missed the cut (obviously), so I watched the rest of the tournament from home. I figured, as did everyone else, that you had the tournament locked up after those birdies. Then, something strange happened. You bogeyed No. 10. Oh well, just one hole. Then you bogeyed No. 11.
Then No. 12 happened. I like everyone else, was completely shocked. The best golfer in the world, a kid who had won three majors last year, hit two straight shots that a 25-handicapper would have been proud of. It didn’t make any sense, until I read your lips.
“Maybe now they will leave Ernie alone.”
That, Jordan, was the nicest thing anyone has ever done for me. I can finally look at my family again. I’ve stopped crying into my pillow every night. Now, golfers on their local muni will chunk a shot into the water and say they Spiethed it just like they will three-putt from a couple feet and say they Ernied it. I can’t thank you enough for that Jordan, and I know you will be back to win many more majors in the future.
The Big Easy