Dan Patrick, this time you’re mine
If you are reading this, Dan Patrick, let’s clear the air on this interview business right from the outset.
To put it bluntly, last year you snubbed me. You were the only player at the American Century Golf Championship to do so — I even talked at length with notorious recluse Mike Schmidt. In past years I’ve chatted with celebs such as Mario Lemieux, Jerry Rice, Dennis Miller and George Brett; not exactly the easiest interviews to score.
But at last year’s event, you, a then-ESPN TV personality, were at the practice tees, where you had just finished slicing a few deep into the woods (actual location of drives may vary). I asked if I could chat with you briefly, and you considered me the way that a maitre ‘d might consider a group of 12 Shriners without a reservation.
“See if you can catch me later,” you said, bagging your driver and walking away. Left unsaid was what you were obviously thinking: “And good luck with that.”
Not that I’m all broken up over this. What unbreakable rule states that every participant in the tournament needs to stop and talk with me? None that I can find (and yes, I checked). Tournament organizers encourage cooperation with the press, sure. But the world will keep spinning with or without Dan Patrick quotes. As Celine Dion sang in that sinking-boat movie, “My heart will go on.”
Of course this year there will be more reason to talk with you. You just resigned after 17 years with ESPN, and no one seems to know what your next professional step will be. Will you be hosting at another sports network? New host of The Price Is Right? The next TV spokesman for Bounty paper towels? The answers are shrouded in mystery.
So as you know Dan, this year’s event is under way as I write this, and we have a lot to catch up on. Shall we say Saturday, 7:30? At the practice tees? I’ll bring the notepad, you bring the Chris Berman anecdotes. We’ll chat, we’ll kid each other, we’ll discuss how hilarious today’s “Dilbert” was. And we’ll laugh … oh, how we’ll laugh. And it will be like last year’s ugly snubbing incident never happened.
Unless, of course, Lucas Black happens to show up. Then I’m sorry but you’re history, Dan. He was in “Sling Blade.”
— Rick Chandler can be contacted at 530 541-3880 x219 or at RChandler@TahoeDailyTribune.com.