Some Do Some Dont Like Fame

By George WhiteMay 10, 2005, 4:00 pm
There are people ' everyday people ' who grow accustomed easily to fame, and there are others who never do. Some famous people rather like being stared at as they go from place to place. Others never do get accustomed to it, no matter how much they have been in the spotlight.
 
Tiger Woods is one who never has grown accustomed to celebrity, though he generally is polite about it. He is quite comfortable being in the playing field hitting shots, but obviously ill at ease when crowds begin to circle in as he walks off the course. Arnold Palmer, Jack Nicklaus, Fuzzy Zoeller, Phil Mickelson, just to name a few, dont seem to mind the intrusions at all.
 
Phil Mickelson
Phil Mickelson always draws a crowd when he starts signing autographs.
You become accustomed to it, yeah, but still it feels a little awkward when everyone is looking at you, Woods says. That's something you never really feel comfortable with, ever - at least in my case. I guess it's one of the reasons why I put my head down a lot. So many eyes are looking at you. I mean, why? I'm just walking.
 
Tiger will never feel comfortable in the goldfish bowl, and that in no way means hes a bad person. Only about 99.9 percent of the general population would feel the same way. He realizes that he has become fabulously wealthy because he is so idolized, however, and so he has come to terms with it. But that doesnt mean he will ever enjoy it.
 
Mickelson, on the other hand, is extremely comfortable around the throngs. He doesnt yet have the adulation of a Tiger Woods, but he isnt too far from it. He will sign autographs until just about everyone has left, he pastes on that goofy grin when he is walking the fairways, and the galleries seem to genuinely like him.
 
I don't really look at myself like that, I guess, he says, debating whether he is a celebrity or not.
 
When I think of a celebrity, I think of guys who are in movies and in Hollywood. I play golf for a living and I've got a wonderful family and we have a lot of time away where we're able to just be ourselves and not be interrupted. I don't consider myself at that level yet.
 
People constantly believe that so-and-so was rude to them, and Im convinced that the vast majority of these people caught so-and-so at the wrong time. It never fails that when I write a positive story about someone, the next day is sure to bring an e-mail which says: Smith was extremely rude to my mother/child/wife. He/she had waited for him for an hour for an autograph, and Smith just blew by him/her.
 
Obviously, the letter-writer genuinely felt wronged by this. But it brings to mind an incident which Ive told before, but which explains sometimes the predicament in which the celebrity finds himself.
 
This particular time I was speaking with Gary Player after the final round of the PGA Seniors, and as he chatted, he busily signed autographs for a long line of people beside the 18th green. He looked up after four or five minutes, only to see more and more people get in line.
 
Look at this, he said in a low voice. I have to catch a plane in a little over an hour. Ive got to get back to the clubhouse and clean out my locker, then I have to drive to the airport. Im going to have quit signing autographs in a minute or two, and that will make a lot of people angry. A few of them will walk away from here thinking I am a real gentleman- the ones who got an autograph. But a lot more will think I am a genuine horses rear.
 
Ive thought about that many times when Ive seen someone suddenly break off and leave a crowd standing and waiting. How do they know what other obligations he has? But does anyone care?
 
Some players, of course, ARE just plain horses rears. They wouldnt stop and sign, regardless of the circumstance. And a few think that after they have signed eight or 10, its the end of their obligation. But for the majority, they have other pressing circumstances and, after they have signed for 8-10 minutes, they have simply got to leave.
 
Tiger, incidentally, is one who is baffled by people who make such a fuss over him. He has perfected the art of signing a few autographs on the run. But people, think for a minute what would happen if he were to sign an autograph for every person who wanted one. If there are 30,000 in attendance, 20,000 would want his name on a slip of paper.
 
He wouldnt spend just 30 minutes after a round signing ' he would spend four hours. If there were 100 people left standing who think Gary Player is a horses rear, there are 10,000 who think Tiger is.
 
What I am saying is - realize, please, that the Phil Mickelsons and the Arnold Palmers are indeed one in a million. They are rare luxuries. And the Tiger Woods of the game are not all bad people. Think what you would do in a similar situation. You are at work and suddenly, there is a crowd of 500 people who want your autograph. You would sign a few, then plead for a little rest. I guarantee you would.
 
Some people slide easily into the mantle of fame. Some dont. All have some responsibility to the masses, simply because it is due to the masses that they get their paychecks. But people, please use reason. These people arent two-headed freaks. They are just ' well, people.
 
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After Further Review: Tiger's return comes at perfect time

By Golf Channel DigitalJanuary 22, 2018, 2:19 am

Each week, GolfChannel.com takes a look back at the week in golf. Here's what's weighing on our writers' minds.

On the current state of golf as Tiger Woods returns to competition ...

Less than four days before Tiger Woods returns to official competitive golf for the first time in a year, Jon Rahm, the new second-ranked player in the world, won on the PGA Tour and Rory McIlroy made an impressive 2018 debut on the European Tour (T-3).

Not since Ben Hogan, Arnold Palmer and Jack Nicklaus crossed paths at the 1960 U.S. Open has there been so many superstars all poised for big seasons, with world No. 1 Dustin Johnson having already won this year and Jordan Spieth and Justin Thomas both coming off stellar seasons.

It’s a good time for golf. - Rex Hoggard


On Tommy Fleetwood's continued success ...

There have been scores of talented European players whose skills didn’t translate to the PGA Tour … and maybe, in a few years, Tommy Fleetwood will prove to be no different.

He sure looks like the real deal, though.  

His title defense in Abu Dhabi – on the strength of a back-nine 30 in windy conditions – was his third title in the past 12 months and 11th top-10 overall. A few of those have come in majors and World Golf Championship events, too, which led the reigning Race to Dubai champion to accept PGA Tour membership for this season.

Beginning at Riviera, he plans to play exclusively in the States through May, then reassess for the rest of the year. Hope he sticks, because he’s a fun personality with tons of game. - Ryan Lavner

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Rahm passes Spieth to become world No. 2

By Nick MentaJanuary 22, 2018, 1:25 am

With his win Sunday at the CareerBuilder Challenge, Jon Rahm picked up his second PGA Tour victory and moved to No. 2 in the FedExCup points standings.

He picked up one more No. 2, too.

The 23-year-old Spaniard passed Jordan Spieth to move to No. 2 in the Official World Golf Ranking, behind only Dustin Johnson.

In 19 months, since June 2016, Rahm has rocketed from No. 776 in the world to No. 2, thanks in part to his low divisor, his number of events played.

Asked after his playoff victory over Andrew Landry to discuss his rapid ascent up the world rankings, Rahm was almost at a loss.

“It's hard to believe to be honest, passing Jordan Spieth,” he said. “That's a three-time major champion. I only have two wins. He's got 10-plus, right? It's again – I've said it many times – I never thought I was going to be at this point in my life right now.”

Rahm may only have two PGA Tour titles, but this is his fourth worldwide win in the last year, dating back to last season’s Farmers Insurance Open. He also took the Dubai Duty Free Irish Open and the DP World Tour Championship on his way to claiming the European Tour’s 2017 Rookie of the Year Award.

Dating back to the start of last season on the PGA Tour, Rahm has racked up 12 top-10s, three runner-ups, and two wins.

He will head to Torrey Pines next week ready to defend for the first time.

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Brady compares self to Woods after winning AFC title

By Jason CrookJanuary 22, 2018, 1:05 am

Tom Brady and Tiger Woods are two of the all-time greats in their respective sports ... a fact that is not lost on the five-time Super Bowl winning quarterback.

Fresh off leading the New England Patriots to a AFC Championship victory over the Jacksonville Jaguars, Brady was asked about winning the game despite a cut on his throwing hand - which made national news heading into the matchup.

His response invoked the name of a certain 14-time major winner, something that would be tough to pull off, if not for the fact that he is, you know, Tom Brady.

“I think it's kind of arrogant to say it bothered me when we had a pretty good game, so I wouldn't say that," the 40-year-old told reporters after the game. "It's like when Tiger Woods said, ‘That was my C game’ and he won the tournament."

Tiger Woods winning with his "C game" may be a distant memory for golf fans, but no matter what game he brings, his next chance to win comes next week at Torrey Pines during his official comeback to the PGA Tour.

Brady has a shot at his sixth Super Bowl title in two weeks. The Patriots would probably benefit from him bringing a little better than his "C game" as well.

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Rahm beats Landry in playoff to win CareerBuilder

By Nick MentaJanuary 22, 2018, 1:00 am

Jon Rahm birdied the fourth extra hole Sunday to defeat Andrew Landry in a playoff, win the CareerBuilder Challenge and move to No. 2 in the Official World Golf Ranking. Here’s how things played out in overtime at PGA West:

Leaderboard: Rahm (-22), Landry (-22), John Huh (-20), Adam Hadwin (-20), Martin Piller (-20), Kevin Chappell (-19), Scott Piercy (-19)

What it means: This is Rahm’s second PGA Tour win and his fourth worldwide victory in the last year, dating back to last season’s Farmers Insurance Open. Rahm took the early lead Thursday with an opening 62 and after rounds of 67-70, he started the final round two back. On Sunday, he made five birdies without dropping a single shot on the intimidating Stadium Course. In the clubhouse at 22 under, Rahm watched as Landry made birdie on 18 to force a playoff.

Rahm missed birdie putts that would have ended the tournament on the final hole of regulation and on each playoff hole. Finally, on his fourth trip down 18 of the day, his birdie bid found the cup. With the victory, Rahm passes Jordan Spieth to move to No. 2 in the Official World Golf Ranking, trailing only Dustin Johnson. He enters next week at Torrey Pines looking to defend for the first time.

Best of the rest: A two-time Web.com winner playing his second full season on the PGA Tour, Landry shot 68 Sunday, making birdie on the 72nd hole to force extras. Once Rahm finally made birdie on the fourth playoff hole, Landry's putt to extend slid by on the right edge. This is Landry's best career finish on the PGA Tour. Had he won, he would have secured full Tour status through the 2019-20 season and earned invites to the Masters, Players, and PGA Championships.

Round of the day: Sam Saunders fired an 8-under 64 to register this best finish of the season, a tie for eighth at 18 under. The reigning Web.com Tour Championship winner was 9 under par through 12 holes before making bogey at 13 and parring his way into the clubhouse.

Biggest disappointment: Overnight leader Austin Cook was eyeing his second win of the season but never contended. The RSM champion carded two double bogeys Sunday en route to a 3-over 75, dropping him from the 54-hole lead to a tie for 14th.

Shot of the day: Rahm's putt to win:

Quote of the day: "One of us had to do it and either one of us would have been a well-deserving champion." - Rahm on his playoff victory over Landry