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VietNamNews

Teed Off (May 10, 2015)

Update: May, 14/2015 - 15:40

with Robert Bicknell

Sometimes it seems like the guy cannot catch a break. Perhaps it's karma coming back to haunt him for numerous past transgressions. He's getting what he deserves. Others might call it simply bad luck.

No matter what you call it, Tiger Woods does seem to have a black cloud following him.

Just when he finally got over the humiliation of getting caught with his pants down (literally), losing his wife and kids, he gets hit with a back injury - as if a complete psychological breakdown wasn't enough. He slowly recovers from that and his short game goes out the window and he humiliates himself once again. He fixes the short game and begins to get back on track and then his girlfriend, Lindsey Vonn, dumps him, so now he mopes around and cannot sleep (another excuse in the making).

According to the various press releases and websites, the split was amicable and "due to their conflicting schedules as professional athletes".

Really?

Golf is played in the summer and Vonn is a skier who competes in the wintertime. I can see where there would possibly be a scheduling conflict. Yup. Sure. The whole thing makes me a bit suspicious, but then again, I was born suspicious and just got more cynical as I got older.

OK, let's give Tiger the benefit of the doubt and assume he didn't get caught with his hand (or any other appendage) in the cookie jar. For a guy who demonstrated such single-minded determination and focus when he was actually "Tiger" Woods (as opposed to being "Eldrick" as he is now), it is quite surprising to see him let this affect him and, worse, for someone who guarded his privacy so vigorously, it is even more surprising to see him admit a weakness like this.

So, I suppose we will just have to wait and see as the drama unfolds, but I wouldn't be surprised to see Tiger out in public in a few weeks with yet another blonde with an affinity for cold weather.

Have you ever stood over a ball and went completely blank mentally on how to make a backswing? Well, it happened to me and I find it not funny at all.

In this case, I was hoist by my own petard (google it).

As a golf teacher, people often come to me after screwing themselves up by watching a Youtube video by some yutz trying to promote his "secret" to a perfect golf swing. Thus, they too were "hoist by their own petard". (To save you the trouble of googling it, it basically means you did it to yourself).

In my case, it was trying to rebuild my short game.

Length off the tee has never been a problem. In recent years I narrowed my stance, brought the club back three-quarters and then exploded through the ball. I have always had fast hands and this was my advantage. But, then I started farting around with what is known as a "dead-hands chip" or pitch. In a nutshell, you keep your hands low, make a very flat backswing and keep the clubhead low as you come through the ball without using any wrist. Your only source of locomotion is your hipturn.

Simple, right? After about 20 hours of practice I was ready to take it onto the course where it worked wonderfully. Only one problem… I am an upright plane player with a minimal amount of hips. And this motion caused me to increase rotation and finish low.

At this point, I am neither fish nor fowl. I am a Platypus and spend so much time in the trees looking for my drives now that I should apply for a job as a forest ranger.

Hoist by my own petard.

While this aggravates me, I know my normal swing will come back after a while because it always does. Of course, I will have to watch a few old videos of myself and perhaps take a few weeks off from swinging the club to let my brain reboot.

But it just goes to show you that nobody is immune from the disease of screwing themselves up. They say the road to hell is paved with good intentions, but what they don't mention is that you build that road yourself… — VNS

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