I don't watch golf as a rule. I've tried playing it and have come to the conclusion that they should make the balls and the bats a lot bigger. There's a stereotype of golf in this country isn't there? - that it's populated by V-necked-sweatered numpties who talk lovingly of Top Gear and tonic water and don't have much time for 'the ladies'? Fortunately the R&A like to host their only major golf tournament at such places. Jeez, even the down home backwoodsmen of Augusta have let a woman join the club.
There's another cliché that all American golfers bash the Bible and blame the weather when they can't plot their way around a links golf course. Phil Mickelson was one such, a man with a talent as ludicrous as his mulletish mane of hair, but who couldn't fathom why these Scotch sandbanks didn't play like the unfeasibly green technicolor pastures of your average American course.
Well yesterday he proved himself and seemed genuinely moved that he had. Lee Westwood meanwhile professed himself not too bothered with the result as he hustled himself into his bridesmaid's costume for the umpteenth time. They always said he couldn't putt. This week he couldn't do the stuff he can do. Poor old Lee. Will waddling Westwood ever get his gong?
The last day of the Open is always a great watch and this one oscillated wildly in the best traditions. Adam Scott, his putter looking for all the world like a branding iron, took the lead only to leak shots immediately. Woods is almost back to his best but the old strut has been replaced by a warier tread these days.
As usual Peter Alliss saw fit to remark that the others were making it easier for big Lefty at the end, forgetting, as that not-all-that-successful-former-golf-professional always does, that when a bloke blazes down the stretch and you have to fight to keep up it can lead to mistakes. He's a harrumphing old scrote that man. I don't care if he has got a nice voice.
But the not-quite success of a couple of Englishmen shouldn't undermine the rude health British sport finds itself in. There may come a time when my ancestors sit round my deathbed and all I bother telling them about is Swanny and Anderson, Wiggo and Froome, Jess n Mo n Greg Thingammy.
The Ashes have turned, well, to ashes already. To call Australia a shambles would be to denigrate a perfectly decent little thoroughfare in the fine city of York. Eleven twerps in saggy greens, they are. Barring a couple of extraordinary partnerships they have wielded their willows like inebriated conductors. The bowlers don't seem too bad - as batsmen.
But when Jimmy's not undoing them with brilliance, Swann's tweaking them out with jack-knifing turners or they're undoing themselves by referring every decision to the third umpire. Or as Shane Watson would put it, a 'doggy's chance'.
But it's not like England are up to much at the mo. Were it not for Bell's batting we might not be gloating quite so whole-heartedly. There are those who lament the Australians' utter ineptitude. They're saying that we should make allowances - give em three innings, one bounce, one hand, play with a tennis ball, etc. Well I'm not one of 'em. 5-0 would be wonderful, ta. Bloody wonderful.
As for Chris Froome, well he's about as English as an English middle-order batsman, which is English enough for me. He doesn't strike me as the most charismatic man in the world. In fact I've seen fallen twigs with more personality. But it's not charisma that tears you up an Alpine 1 in 4 after you've been cycling for a fortnight already. It's sheer force of will, enormous talent, and, in the olden days, a secret pharmaceutical prescription.
I don't doubt that Froome is clean. Cyclists like him seem desperate to shake off the inheritance handed to them by the megalomaniac Armstrong. And who can blame him? Cycling history is pock-marked with horrendous levels of drug-taking. The death of Tom Simpson on Mont Ventoux, brandied and amphetamined up to the handlebars, is possibly cycling's lowest (and yet almost highest) point, and it seems appropriate that Froome pedalled past his monument on the way to victory in the Tour this year.
I have at times wished for the whole of sport to be a drug-test-free zone. There would be a wondrous freakish side-show to be had if a 100 metres final line-up featured characters who wouldn't look out of place in an Avengers Assemble sequel. I can see decathlon favourite Dr David Banner being riled by his coach as I speak.
Professional football seems to be pretty much drug test free anyway at present, although I wouldn't mind if a couple of England boys were found to be over-stimulating themselves for a big summer tournament - it would be the first time any one of them has shown any initiative since 1990. Indeed the girls weren't much better - a horribly convincing imitation of the men as they laboured against a French team that were devilishly good.
But let's not think of footy - it'll only bring us all down when quite frankly there are heroes to herald.
2013. It may never get better than this.