Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Utah Golfers in the 2013 US Open

The US Open is being played this week at Merion Golf Club in Haverford Township near Ardmore, Pennsylvania. In the field this week are two golfers who live in Utah. Jay Don Blake, a Champions Tour regular and St. George, Utah native, emerged out of the field of 42 at the St. Louis qualifier that was battling for two spots to play in the 2013 U.S. Open. Blake posted the lowest 18-hole score of the day to distance himself from the pack. At 54 years old, Jay Don is the oldest player in the field this week.

Also in the field is Mike Weir. Weir, a resident of Draper, Utah and former BYU golfer, gained entry into the US Open field by finishing as the first alternate at the Columbus, Ohio qualifier and ultimately made it into the field with 5 spots open for alternates. Weir, who is also a former Masters champion, has been trying to rebuild his game after 3 years of elbow injuries and poor play. He has recently shown signs that his game is coming around.

As a St. George native and former BYU Cougar, I will be cheering for both Blake and Weir to have successful weeks and hopefully contend for the US Open title. Go Mike and Jay Don!

Monday, February 6, 2012

2012 Waste Management Phoenix Open

I attended the Waste Management Phoenix Open PGA Tour golf event in Scottsdale, Arizona this last week. I was with my buddies Adam Olmstead and Andy Fackrell. We had a blast. Of course, it's not difficult to have a good time when you're with your friends, enjoying the beautiful 70 degree weather of Scottsdale, and watching the best golfers in the world work their magic on the spectacular TPC Scottsdale stadium course. It was fun watching Kyle Stanley redeem himself from his collapse last week at Torrey Pines.

We also joined in on the fun at number 16, which is the par 3 that is entirely surrounded by grandstands, creating a unique arena-like environment on the golf course. At number 16, the fans are loud, roudy and a little irreverant. It reminds me of scenes from Happy Gilmore.

All in all it was a great trip. I am looking forward to our next PGA weekend, wherever it may be!

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

2011 Northern Trust Open

I am a little slow getting this on the blog, but I figured I would share it anyway. Last month I took a break from "tax season" to go enjoy a little piece of heaven. The piece of heaven I am referring to is the Riviera Country Club in Pacific Palisades, California. Riviera CC is the host course of the Northern Trust Open, one of the PGA Tour's premier events on the west coast swing early in the season.

I went with a couple of buddies and spent four days living the high life. We got to watch some unbelievable golf and meet some of the tour players. We met Phil Mickelson, Stewart Cink, Paul Casey, Luke Donald, Rickie Fowler, Padraig Harrington, Mike Weir, Ryan Moore, Dean Wilson and Daniel Summerhays to name a few. It was fun talking to Daniel Summerhays. Like Mike Weir and Dean Wilson, Summerhays is a former BYU Cougar. He talked with us for a few minutes after he finished his second round. He seemed like a pretty cool guy.

Unfortunately, the fun had to come to an end. But we have already started planning the trip for next year. By the way, Aaron Baddeley won the tournament this year!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

The Utah HB477 Mess

It has been widely publicized that the Utah Legislature passed, and Governor Herbert signed into law, the highly controversial bill that dramatically changes the public's access to government records. The changes to GRAMA, or Government Records Access and Management Act, provide special status to certain electronic communications of elected officials. HB477 also increased the fees and allows government agencies an indefinite amount of time to respond to records requests.

Utahns are upset and down right angry at their elected representatives over their votes to pass this fast-tracked bill. The public was not allowed time to review and comment on HB477 before the legislature acted in haste to pass this bill that could potentially make our State and local governments less transparent. All citizens want to know what their elected representatives are doing while on the job. And the elected officials who argue that their electronic communications with constituents and other officials should be protected for privacy reasons should remember that they work for us, the people of the State of Utah. If they don't want their emails to be read, they should step down from their elected position and allow the voters in their district to elect someone who will do the job in an open manner. Can you imagine what an employer would say if an employee of thier business said the owner couldn't read their emails because they were "private". Give me a break. That employee would be fired so fast his head would spin! Our elected representatives should not be treated any differently.

I'm glad to see that my State Senator, Steve Urquhart, realizes he made a mistake in voting for HB477. You can read his statement here.We all make mistakes, and I'm glad Steve can admit that and move forward to correct the mistake. I agree with Steve that HB477 should be scrapped, and then we should move forward to improve GRAMA in a way that addresses our modern electronic communications but still provides the citizens of Utah a transparent government.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Morgan Philpot Closing The Gap With Jim Matheson

In a poll released last night by Dan Jones & Associates for KSL and the Deseret News shows that Morgan Philpot is quickly closing the gap in the polls with Jim Matheson. The released results shows Philpot now down 12%, with 51% of the respondents saying they plan to support Matheson and 39% planning to vote for Philpot.

What is significant about these latest poll results is that two weeks ago in a poll conducted by Dan Jones & Associates, Philpot was down 26% to Matheson. And as Philpot appears to be closing the gap fast, Matheson's support has dropped to 51%, which is not a good sign for Matheson. If this trend continues for Matheson and if the 10% of undecided voters break for Philpot, which could happen in this anti-incumbent wave of voter anger, the Philpot - Matheson race could come down to the wire on election night.

Philpot appears to have the momentum, but it remains to be seen if there is enough time before election day for Philpot to win over enough voter support to get him across the finish line as the victor on election night next week. I hope that voters in Utah's 2nd Congressional District will see through the deception and negative attacks on Morgan Philpot and send Philpot to Washington D.C. as our representative.

Click here to see my thoughts on the Morgan Philpot vs. Jim Matheson race.

Friday, October 29, 2010

One Great Sandwich!

Since my wife is 8 1/2 months pregnant, I told her I would take care of lunch today while the kids were at school so she could relax. It figured it was the least I could do to help lower the stress level of a miserable woman who is about ready to pop!

One thing that continually amazes me about the St. George area is the vast number of good restaurants for a community of its size. So with that said, I decided to pick up sandwiches from Capriotti's Sandwich Shop. And although Capriotti's is a regional chain of sorts, it has the feel of a local neighborhood sandwich shop. On top of that, the sandwich I bought was one of the best I have had.

If you like turkey, you have to try the Cran-Slam Club. It is a triple decker sandwich with hand-pulled turkey, cranberry sauce, ham, mayo and lettuce. And of course I got it on wheat bread since I am trying to lose a few pounds to get into running shape! It was one great sandwich. I will definitely be going back to have it again.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Philpot vs. Matheson

In the race for Utah's second congressional district, it is interesting to hear what my friends and colleagues are saying about the two candidates; Morgan Philpot (R) and Jim Matheson (D).

Most of the feedback I have heard about Morgan Philpot is mixed. Even many republicans, while planning to vote for him, feel that Philpot doesn't seem to understand the demographics of the district. Observers draw this conclusion from watching and listening to Philpot look and sound like a candidate trying to sway voters of a younger age (i.e. He spikes his hair in the front and uses a vocabulary that you would expect to hear from a 25 year old). Philpot is struggling to rally his base in a year that he should have easily tied it down.

On the flip side, many republicans and democrats are not satisfied with the incumbent Jim Matheson. Democrats think he is too conservative, and republicans think he is too liberal. Matheson claims to be an independent, but most of the water cooler talk I hear leads me to believe that most don't buy into Matheson's self-proclaimed independent label. Upon review of his voting record, Matheson consistently votes with Nancy Pelosi, even though he touts the handful of times he broke ranks and didn't vote with his party. He continually reminds voters that he is a blue dog democrat, supposedly trying to keep the extreme liberal left of his own party in check. Furthermore, Matheson always falls back on his Southern Utah roots as a reason that he relates with the conservative, rural part of the district.

However, the fact remains that Jim Matheson is a democrat that helped bring Nancy Pelosi to power by casting his vote for her to be Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives. My personal opinion is that Matheson's campaign slogan of him "putting Utah first" is a farce. He puts his own interests ahead of his constituents' interests. I would like Matheson to explain his votes for Nancy Pelosi as Speaker and with a straght face say that he believes those votes were the votes his constituents wanted him to cast. He couldn't do it without lying.

Additionally, it appears that Matheson broke ranks and voted with the republicans only on votes where Nancy Pelosi already had the votes she needed to pass the socialistic Obama agenda. If Jim Matheson was truly undecided on his vote for Obamacare until the day he cast his vote, which he claimed, that tells me all I need to know about him. He is either too stupid to understand that what his party is doing is destroying America, or he is putting his own interests ahead of his constituents. Either way, Matheson is not getting my vote.

So while many conversatives may buy into Matheson's propoganda, I hope they will come to their senses, overlook Philpot's perceived lack of credibility, and vote for the only true conservative in the race for Utah's second congressional district, Morgan Philpot.