Tiger Woods won some kind of golf tournament the other day, one of those things in what is known as “the silly season.” Nothing official, except the money --- though Tiger did move from No. 52 to No. 21 in the world ranking. Every player took home a check. It was Tiger's field. He invited 17 guys who play the tour, and even the guy who finished last, which happened to be Nick Watney, took home $140,000.
If you noticed any sports section around the country Monday, the scene was made to look like a real tournament. Tiger stood with one leg hoisted, like a canine at a fireplug, and his mouth wide open, enough to swallow a cantaloupe. He was letting out a “primal” scream, as the New York Times identified it.
The Times was not considerably impressed by the event, I gathered.
“It was a field of 18, none ranked in the world's top five,” the story read. “It won him nothing but self-satisfaction. He let out a primal scream and pumped his fist so vigorously it's a wonder he didn't wrench his arm out of its socket.”
To carry the un-Tiger scene a stretch further, he then sent several bottles of champagne to the media center.
Ye gods, has he gone berserk? Has he lost the old sullen Tiger personality? Whenever has he ever even sent a bottle of ginger ale to a media center, more likely a bottle of Milk of Magnesia. So, welcome back to civilization, Tiger.
Now we'll see if this gush of personality carries over when he really wins a golf tournament.
“It just feels awesome,” he gushed, though it doesn't register on the PGA Tour. Nor does it go into his personal bank account, His take of $1.2 million goes into the Tiger Woods Foundation, and I’m not sure any of us knows just how the foundation is managed and what it does.
Nevertheless, several newspapers were impressed, headlined in 48-point black type. However, most of us will save all the exhilaration until Tiger wins again on the tour, any world tour. The major wire service didn't even cover this one with its lead golf staffer.
For it was not a tournament, it was an exhibition.