Woods Family – Cheyenne and Tiger
For everything there is a season. At least what they tell me when I become impatient or discouraged over skills that have either gone away forever, or have temporarily deserted me. Fighting the good fight in any competitive industry has to be done, but it can sure wear you out as the years roll by. For others who are younger, the setbacks are still manageable, so long as you have maintained the fire of youth and flag planting on mountaintops. The famous Woods family, at least the golfing portion of it, are going through their separate trials, and the results carry an entirely different set of ramifications.
Cheyenne Woods finished in the top fifteen at qualifying school last year, and did pretty well for a rookie. She has won once, almost won in another week, and made about eight cuts, not great but sustainable. What sticks in my mind is that she has won once, but she’s still back at Q School for the approaching 2016 season. It just goes to show that you can’t let your guard down for a second, or they’ll make you do it all over again. She will, more than likely, do well, and be right back on the tour. However, Woods is sitting in what is called “Category 17,” and would like to reach “Category 12,” which will mean more automatic berths and less weekly qualifying.
Woods makes no bones about it. She thinks going back to Q School “sucks,” and I would probably concur if I were at such a level. Still, she’s played the courses, feels confident, and knows from the past year that she can complete. The 63 in the first round of the Manulife was certain proof. Now, if she could do that four times in one week, or something reasonably close.
Cheyenne’s famous uncle is at a different crossroads, one without many second chances left. Tiger has limped on, and his body can’t recapture the old magic. I suspect that his mind can’t, either. It may be that the finely tuned Ferrari golf engine is tired, rusty, and out of gas. Articles coming out today write of almost nothing else than his admission that the career might be over. He adds that such a fate would be “OK,” but I really doubt it. The dream is still there, and the face of Jack Nicklaus must swim before him in his dreams.
Most of us experience a certain degree of “can’t do it anymore” in our chosen professions, and it hurts, but our skills don’t usually abandon us so abruptly as they have Tiger Woods. We’re not sure what to do with ourselves once it’s over. Reinventing oneself at retirement age is another ball game than an early career move.
I envisioned Tiger in the analyst’s booth, but then thought that he might be too disliked a figure for that to fit. McEnroe and Nastase were total brats in tennis, but they love John at the microphone. For starters, his infantile behavior was entertaining, and second, he could play tennis. That got him off the hook. Still, Im not sure if Tiger is entertaining without a club in his hand. What the crowd loves most is his reaction to a bad shot. What is he going to do, throw, hit, spit on, curse at?
The road is still wide open for Cheyenne. She is young, healthy, and has a go-get-’em attitude. Her body is not betraying her, and her competitive mind has not exhausted itself obsessing over records and immortality. Maybe in twenty years or so, we’ll see her in the broadcast booth. Where will Tiger go when he’s done? It’s difficult to imagine