The Denver Post reports more snippets of a new book about Tiger Woods have been disseminated by the media. One anecdote purported by Hank Haney, the book's author and former coach for Woods, was that the former number one golfer didn't want his wife to celebrate any victories. Elin Nordegren, when she was a nanny for Jesper Parnevik, wanted to have a party to celebrate a victory at Torrey Pines.
Woods replied, according to the Post , "That's not what we do. I'm not Jesper. We're supposed to win."
What's wrong with celebrating a victory at a big tournament? Golf tournaments only happen once per week. Football players celebrate touchdowns. Soccer players celebrate goals. NASCAR drivers have ceremonial gatherings in victory lane after races conclude.
There's nothing wrong with throwing a party after earning a paycheck worth several hundreds of thousands of dollars.
Although there is a lot of work involved to reach a level of professional mastery in golf, there are many reasons to celebrate a PGA Tour victory. Wins don't come very often. NFL teams are considered average if they win eight games per year. Any golfer who wins eight tournaments in one season is considered the best of the best.
Payouts at golf tournaments are huge. At the 2012 Northern Trust Open , Bill Haas scored a victory worth $1,188,000. Second place got $580,800. There's nothing wrong with having a party for winning over $1 million playing a recreational sport.
Plus it's not like Woods has to lay his body on the line every week. NFL players excel at what they do but at tremendous sacrifice to their physical bodies. Concussions, injuries and broken bones are a fact of life for many NFL pros. Not so in golf. Golf is probably one of the safest games on the planet.
Consider what it takes to win a PGA Tour event. Years of practice culminate in a four-day event in which one person plays four rounds of golf better than 125 of his peers. Earning $1 million for four days of work is substantial considering it takes a person on minimum wage nearly 70 years to earn that much before taxes are taken out.
Woods comes from a military family. His father was in the army and instilled a sense of hard work in the younger Woods. I'm trying to figure out where in the life of such a prolific golfer did the human concept of celebration simply disappear. It's human nature to want to celebrate great accomplishments. Hopefully Woods figures it out before he is 60 and a bitter old man who doesn't enjoy life.
William Browning has covered sports for the Yahoo! Contributor Network including golf and local golf courses in southwest Missouri. He currently resides in Branson, Mo.
- Tiger Woods
- Jesper Parnevik
- Elin Nordegren