Mighty Mac Meltdown
If you read my post on the bizarre New York Athletic Club dinner for John McEnroe, you'll understand the "life imitating art" aspect of this follow-up.
I had an e-mail this morning from Dorrie, who was seated with me for dinner. She wrote:
. . . Both Jeff and I would be remiss if we didn't tell you what happen after you left!
First, all the rest of the speakers got booed and cat called. Finally, Mac got up and berated everyone for acting like goons and said in no uncertain terms that he was embarrassed to be at the New York Athletic Club, where everyone was drinking too much and not treating his friends with respect.
He told everyone he felt so bad he wasn't even going to read his speech.
He then thanked his friends for coming and said he only noticed 15 friendly faces in the room . . . the rest he said had no manners.
Wow, so . . .
I found this communication almost implausible, and tried to call Dorrie right away. But she's out of the office today. So Chris and I checked out Lloyd Grove's column in the Daily News and—if anything—his version makes the event sound even uglier!
The Daily News website has been down all day, but if you're interested, visit the site and navigate to Lloyd's "Lowdown" column for today . . .
When I wrote my post on this ill-fated dinner yesterday, I wondered what, if anything, might have constituted sufficient reason for me to stay at the event.
Nothing, I decided.
Now I've changed my mind.
If I knew what was brewing, I most certainly would have hung around for the fireworks!
I'm not surprised this happened and I know for sure that not of this was McEnroe's fault. The NYAC is a weird place, the kind of place where the worst segment of the fratboy crowd winds up.
Update: Chris here. Tony Lance, one of the editors here at the magazine, found TennisWeek's Andre Christopher's account of the evening. To Christopher, Johnny Mac came off as restrained and classy. As Tony said, it's interesting how people can see the same situation in such different ways.