The King is dead. Let’s let him die.
Ladies and Gentlemen…the worlds greatest golfer, at least in the last 20 years is no more. Tiger Woods’ career has officially come to an end after a miserable showing at the Open at St. Andrews, 2015. Oh sure, he will continue to attend as many events as he can secure sponsors exemptions but his spot on the tee sheet is just keeping another real golfer from competing.
I have been defending Tiger ad nauseum since his indiscretions and the trail of tramps but even I have to throw in the towel. The reason I supported his golf…not his life, was the sense of glory that I remember. His unbelievable shot making, putting and physique were an inspiration. He seemingly never missed a putt and his drives were a wonderment. His work ethic even to this moment is Herculean. But his game…!
Having never seen Bobby Jones play I thought watching Tiger perform was something really special. Jack Nicklaus is generally considered the greatest golfer of all time but that would be in the professional ranks. Jack beat Arnold Palmer early on in his career so therefore I hated Jack. Now that he is a senior citizen extraordinaire I listen to Jack’s wisdom and the simplicity of golf as he played it and wonder why I was such a lunkhead all those years.
I watched too much Arnie and infected myself with his outrageous but effective swing. Not having the availability to watch round the clock golf, my images of “the swing” produced by western Pennsylvania finest was all I had to go on. My office, from which I write this is a shrine The King of Golf.
Now into my 52nd year of golfing I have finally extricated myself from that prison of a swing. Along comes Tiger with the perfect everything. I was making up for lost time…this is the greatest ever. In the end he will be deemed the owner of the best 15-20 years in golf history but at the ripe old age of 39 he is done.
…I just think about this stuff!
I grew up in an urban setting where the minority population was small but vibrant. I don’t remember any Asians or Hispanic but the colored kids were my friends. Now don’t get your panties in a twist over the reference to colored kids. Check out the title of this piece…bigotry is absolutely learned.
It serves no purpose to indict my parents or neighbors here to make the point but suffice to say that in the early 50″s into the sixties that phrase was used by the colored kids as well as me.
My friend John told me a little story which needs to be shared…go back again and look at the title of this piece. John and family live in an affluent community and it is diverse…lots of Asian, a few Hispanics and a growing Black population. Here we go again…I am not being bigoted by saying Black I just don’t believe that African-American is a necessary handle anymore that me being called a Scottish-American…and I am second generation American, have family in Scotland and have visited four times in my life. Hell, I may be the only person in the America to have preset bagpipe music on my Pandora subscription.
How about that for stream of consciousness!
Back to the little story. John’s son Clay was six and playing youth baseball when he was asked to play up to another division comprised of nine year old…quite a jump and a testimony to Clay’s ability. John anxiously watched as Clay warmed up prior to the game and made two observations, “these kids are tall and there is only one black kid on the field.” Immediately he deduced that there must be a Pittsburgh Steeler nearby. Sure enough behind the batting cage was linebacker Lawrence Timmons in all his hugeness. Clay struck out in his first at bat but next time to the plate he was older and wiser. He ran into a pitch and it went to the fence…being young and quick he scored an inside-the-park home run. Timmons was the first to congratulate Clay with a fist bump. Clay was surprised.
John walked over to the bench to congratulate his son and asked if he knew who that man was who fist bumped him. Of course he did not and Dad explained who he was and said his son was also on that team. Clay innocently looked around the bench and said “which one is his son.”
Once again, go back and read the title. Congratulations John!
…I just think about this stuff!