Very few people know this, but recently I was inducted into the secret society of bloggers. It was a difficult application process (I had to list my blog and promise to uphold the Bloggers Oath…I could tell you about it but then I’d have to kill you), but I was approved and they had a really nice ceremony for me this past week (the Starbucks was booked up so we went to table 14 at Panera Bread) where I got my very own Bloggers Society bathrobe, slippers, and “Yes I live in my mom’s basement” ironic trucker hat. So now I’m official.
That’s right- bloggers are dangerous, Mr. Finchem.
While I was there I met some other bloggers and we shared trade secrets. I’ll admit, telling people I blog about golf got some real odd looks, but eventually some of them came around. The other sports bloggers were the most welcoming. One of them was my favourite hockey blogger, Sean McIndoe of www.downgoesbrown.com and ESPN’s www.grantland.com which are both fantastic sites. For years, his secret spies have broken into the NHL’s offices and gotten him Top Secret files and documents.
Sean’s welcome gift to me (other than a bag full of losing Roll Up The Rim cups…thanks?) was to have his spies break into the PGA Tour’s offices in Ponte Vedra (let’s face it- with the winter we’re having any excuse to go to Florida works at this point). His spies explained that normally, they have a couple dozen Konica Minolta Bizhub Swingvision SuperSloMo Gary McCords MoustacheWax cameras that act as security, but apparently they needed them (something about a “tournament” that was being “broadcast”) that day. They found a big box marked “Super Secret Files-Shhhh!!!!” and grabbed it. They might have gotten caught, but luckily the security (who may or may not have been Gary McCord) was asleep.
As you may or may not know, the PGA Tour does not publicly announce any fines or suspensions because…well…you know…it’s complicated (the European Tour announces them) and Tim Finchem is busy explaining the FedEx Cup to random people. I’ll point out that the NHL not only announces fines and suspensions, but they put out videos explaining the action and the suspension. If only there was a website that housed videos…oh, that’ll never happen. Even the ATP and WTA (that’s tennis) announce suspensions. The PGA Tour has somehow managed this despite John Daly’s litany of actions, the Deer Antler Spray episode with Vijay Singh, Fuzzy Zoeller’s comments about Tiger Woods in 1997, and Tiger Woods’ own litany of profanity, club throwing, and the like.
However, the PGA Tour does suspend players and fine them. They just do it “secretly” because if you were to find out that someone got suspended because they did donuts on the 14th fairway in their courtesy car…you might not tune in to watch or buy tickets when the Tour comes to your town? Sure.
However, my Spies on Tour found out that the Tour does, in fact, have a process for dealing with potential fines and suspensions, and I’ve managed to get a copy.
Q: When did
the incident occur?
1: Tuesday during the official welcome reception
2: Wednesday during the pro-am
3: During Thursday-Friday play
4: During Saturday (3rd round) play
5: During Sunday’s round, on television, and in Woods or Mickelson’s group
6: On Twitter
Q: What type of incident?
1: On-course profanity
2: Club throwing
3: Rules violation phoned in by the one guy who always calls these in
4: Etiquette violation phoned in by the one guy who always calls these in
5: Player/fan/member of media make Ian Poulter send out 50 tweets last night
6: Positive drug test for something other than Viagra, Scotch, or Horse Tranquilizers
7: A player tweeted about why he can’t use racial slurs anymore
8: Someone finally snapped at the guys who yell random shit during tee shots
9: Was it the “mashed potatoes” guy?
11: No suspension
Q: What type of player was involved?
2: Was it really Tiger?
4: Oh Shit
5: Is it on video
7: Oh Shit
Q: Was it someone other than Tiger?
1: No- I already said it was Tiger…do you not get these running memes?
Q: Okay, so if not Tiger then who?
2: Oh fuck…are you kidding?
4: Then who else?
5: Guy nobody has ever heard of (even the guys on The Golf Channel don’t know)
Q: Who is talking about the incident (circle all that apply)?
1: The Morning Drive crew from The Golf Channel
2: The guy who does the Perfect Club infomercial
3: Golf bloggers (both of them)
4: Sports Talk Radio
5: BET News Tonight
6: The President
7: Home Shopping Network
Q: Does this player have any history of bad behavior?
1: Nope…squeaky clean
2: Was once warned about forgetting to shake hands with one of the other caddies, standard bearer, Feherty, the guys in the scoring tent, the guy in the ugly jacket who gives out the trophy, the guy in the ugly jacket’s wife, and all four members of the military who are required to hold the flagstick because we started this thing and now it’s like a death cycle of Nickelback.
3: Fined for swearing once
4: Fined for forgetting to thank Jesus and not having his adorable wife and children run on the 18th green after a win
5: Fined multiple times for profanity
6: Destroyed the locker room while wearing women’s underpants and a Jim Nantz mask
7: Tried to arm-bar Roger Maltbie
Q: Were there any extenuating circumstances?
1: It was during the final round of a major and he had a 30 foot putt to tie lip out on 18
2: Ball was in a sand-filled divot
3: Johnny Miller bent over in front of him wearing a thong
4: Lost “next time you’re having sex with your wife speak to her in your Jack Nicklaus accent” bet
5: Rookie player who actually thought “be on the 9th green at 9:00 p.m.” was a thing
6: Brawl between Bubba Watson and his caddie spilled into next group
7: Player on 18th hole and had not heard a reference from “Caddyshack”
1: Player fined (fill in amount)
2: Player suspended (fill in length of suspension)
3: Player suspended for (fill in number) majors
4: Player suspended for Ryder Cup
5: Player now required to go to Presidents Cup as Fred Couples’ personal ball washer