"They've got titanium and psychologists," Philp said. "All I've got is nature."
Nature certainly surprised Muirfield this year. Instead of panicking, R&A officials decided to play along. They let large swaths of fairways, and even some putting surfaces, turn from green to brown, from merely firm to breakneck fast, without getting overly concerned. They hardly think it's too much to ask that the players do the same.
"In your view," BBC host Hazel Irvine asked Dawson late Thursday, "right now it is far from unplayable?"
"Far from unplayable," he replied. "But we do hear player comment and we're not so insular as to ignore it."
Meantime, though, it's clearly on the golfers to figure out their next move. Many went home Thursday night conflicted.
"We know it's going to be tough, but that's what makes this championship fun," said Tim Clark, who shot 72.
Asked whether he expected making any changes to his game for Round 2, the South African could only come up with one.
"Bring a lot of Kleenex for the tears," Clark said, "and that's about it really."
Jim Litke is a national sports columnist for The Associated Press. Write to him at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow him at Twitter.com/JimLitke.