I was really surprised yesterday at the total radio silence from the mainstream golf media regarding the reports of Tiger Woods and Lindsey Vonn’s upcoming marriage scheduled for Valentine’s Day.
This is exactly the kind of soft news they have bombarded us with for fifteen years. Let Woods hold his kid’s hand at a golf tourney and you will see 100 photos and an hour of video. Let Woods and Vonn go to a charity event, and every one of those “awesome” Gen X golf bloggers will write about it. But when word leaks out Woods and Vonn are set to marry on Valentine’s Day, they go silent? What gives?
I didn’t get it. At first, my theory was that they knew Woods wanted to keep it quiet, so they didn’t mention it. They might do that for loyalty, or from fear of being cut off from access to Woods. That seemed kind of funny because (a) their job is to cover golf not faithfully cheer, and (b) they have no more access to Woods than I do. Some of their parent companies might have put the kibosh on them, I suppose. Still, not a single one of them reporting on it?
It seemed odd, and I had no good explanation. Today, upon further reflection, I think I’ve found the reason. First off, today’s golf media is very much a follow-the-leader business. How many places did you see that “Underwater Hole-in-One” video last week? 100? One of these idiot bloggers/tweeters will post it, and all the others will race to do the same. It’s an important story because they all report on it, right?
That’s one of the main reasons golf reporting is so horrible these days. They are all afraid of their own shadows. They don’t want to write anything that hasn’t already written before by someone else. Let Golf Digest or Golf Channel print something, though, and every lame-o golf blogger/tweeter will repeat it — including those “awesome” and “edgy” Millennials.
Still, how could they so faithfully hold the line on this story? Then, it hit me. The problem wasn’t leak or rumor or what-have-you about the marriage. The problem was the reaction of Vonn’s parents. How dare Lindsey Vonn’s parents not be happy with their daughter marrying Tiger Woods?
From the Enquirer:
“Her family believes, ‘Once a cheater, always a cheater,’ and they’re warning her not to make any decisions she’ll regret,” said another insider.
Or, my favorite, the (somewhat suspect) Google Translate version of the Dutch article in De Telegraaf:
The family of Lindsey wants a stick for stabbing there.
Such words savage the narrative of the golf media lackeys. They would have you believe Tiger Woods is some great catch for any lucky gal. Why no one loves his family more than Woods. Watch us repeat this video of him holding his kid over and over and over.
Vonn’s parents balking at the idea of a marriage feeds the wrong narrative, the dreaded “Tiger is a laughingstock” narrative. Not at all the mainstream golf media’s approved storyline.
So no one with the guts to start a story is willing to write about the Woods-Vonn wedding because it forces a “Tiger is a laughingstock” narrative, due to Vonn’s parents being against the marriage. Without one of the “grownup” golf media sources writing about the topic first, there is no way the lemming Gen X and “edgy and awesome” Millenial writers will mention it.
This is the kind of story where I earn my keep. My raison d’être. Once again, ole Lanny stands alone, pointing out the king has no clothes.