Then there was a second wave of E-mails that indicated the sentiment in favor of Williams was much more favorable.
Meanwhile on Woods own website, he conceded that Williams could have handled things in a more delicate manner. Woods also stressed that tournament officials needed to be stricter in their enforcement of policy as it relates to photographers at events.
It was time to move on.
Then I got this E-mail from a prominent tour caddie, one who has been on the winning bag at a major championship.
Steve HAS become a wacko..a guy who used to be one of the guys has become a distant individual from the caddie ranks, wrote the caddie. I understand how prolific his job is, but I think one of the biggest complaints from sports fans in America is seeing very successful people in their respective sports have a severe personality/attitude change due to the successes they have experienced. Steve should take some lessons in humility from the caddie (Bones) of the next No. 1 player in the world (Phil).
Then I read Rick Reillys column in Sports Illustrated. Reilly knows his golf but he is usually more representative of what the general sports fan is thinking.
Wrote Reilly: Tigers caddie, Steve Williams, has all the charm of a rhino with an impacted molar. He doesnt speak to the media, rarely talks to the fans and has the look on his face of a man whod very much like to pinch your head off. At Shinnecock he kicked a photographers camera on Friday and reached into the crowd to snatch another camera on Sunday. Once, at a Skins game, he took a fans camera and threw it into a lake. The man has ruined more pictures than Sylvester Stallone. Hey, heres an idea: Fire the caddie and rehire the coach!
Finally one other reader decided to put the whole thing into verse:
They call me Steve Williams and Im a real good caddie
But start taking pictures of Mr. Woods and I go a little battie(sic)
We havent won a major now in eight major tries
You can only take pictures when we beat the other guys
I dont just carry clubs, get the yards and be a moderator
Im a new breed of caddie and a camera confiscator
I dont want to scare you so think before you do
And leave your camera at home before coming to Pinehurst No. 2
Not exactly Robert Frost. But you get the idea.
Should Woods fire Williams? I think that solution to the problem is a little harsh.
But, swing problems aside, I think Woods needs to try to have more fun, particularly at the majors. It would help him if Williams could assist him in this area. If Williams, by all accounts a fundamentally sound caddie, is a humorist, I still havent seen evidence of it.
Hey, guys: Lighten up. Take a page from the book of Fluff Cowan, Tigers erstwhile caddie.
Can you imagine Arnold Palmers caddie acting like a thug? I cant.
Now lets get all this behind us. Please.
Email your thoughts to Brian Hewitt