Extended Bill Simmons-esque analogy, minus the pop culture, plus stage direction

>> Saturday

If there's been one story these last few weeks that interests me the least, I think it had to be Tigerlynchmobnoosegate. To be perfectly honest, these stories have become so common and so unbearably formulaic that I just can't bring myself to care. Offensive comment--> Prominent racial activist response--> Jibber-jabber--> Apology--> Jibber-jabber dissecting the apology--> Suspension/firing--> More jibber-jabber--> Everyone forgets.

But this time, it had to do with golf. And somehow, that's always more fun for me. I guess it's because I hate golf, golfers, golf courses (what fantastic wastes of natural resources), people who wear golf shirts on or off the course, and "golf people" in a general sense. Basically--Fuck you, golf.

Oops... Before I go any further, warning labels:


But it's not only that I hate golf. I hate that "it"--being the golf establishment or some other nebulous entity--attempts to uphold that sense of unalterable purity and prestige, especially when its demons are nagging it the most. It reminds me of one of those families that tries to convince both themselves and the outside world of their perfectly happy existence when they are, in reality, fucked up beyond repair. Observe:

Faldo suggested that "to take Tiger on, maybe they should just gang up [on him] for a while."

"Lynch him in a back alley," Tilghman said, laughing.

Scene: Formal dining room, large family holiday gathering.

Super-cheerful uncle: Honey? Would you pass me the rolls?
His equally-cheerful wife: Of course!
Concerned, super-religious aunt: Everything is delicious.
[scattered murmers of agreement followed by an extended silence]

Concerned aunt: I'm worried how we're going to take care of Aunt Martha when she leaves the hospital.
Her radical, slightly goth daughter in late teens: She's 78. Why don't you just euthanize her.
[Utensils drop to plates; a few family members start choking]

"If I got on this show and said I wanted to put some Jewish-American in a gas chamber, I don't care what context I said it in, the entire Jewish community would have the right to say I should be put off this show or my radio show if I said it there," Sharpton told CNN. "Or if I said I wanted to see a woman raped. This is an insult to all blacks. Lynching is not murder in general; it is not assault in general. It is a specific racial term."

Humorless great-uncle: How dare you ever talk about my sister-in-law like that! People who believe in things like that are sick! You're sick to think something like that! How would you have liked it if your parents said, "Lock her in the nuthouse," when you had that nervous breakdown? Come to think of it, maybe they should have!
Goth girl: Oh, go fuck yourself, hypocrite! [stroms from the dining room]
Humorless great-uncle: Don't use that word in my presence, missy!

Woods' agent, Mark Steinberg of IMG, released a statement saying, "This story is a non-issue. Tiger and Kelly are friends and Tiger has a great deal of respect for Kelly. Regardless of the choice of words used, we know unequivocally that there was no ill intent in her comments. This story is a non-issue in our eyes."

Amicable, calm-mannered grandfather: Aw... Come on now. You know how young kids are these days. She's always loved and respected my sister. Young people just say things sometimes.

"There was no ill intent at all," Funk said, according to The Associated Press. "I think it was just a slip, and they said that Tiger has already forgiven her. I think when you're in the TV tower for that many hours, you're going to wish you didn't say some things probably, and that was one thing that slipped out. I think you've got to give them a little grace."

The "chill" uncle: Yeah... You know... That's who she is. She likes to say things that are a little controversial sometimes. You know, she's probably used to being around her friends who'd find that funny, and she just forgot who she was around for a second and just let it out. Don't be so hard on the girl.

"The Golf Channel regrets the poorly chosen remarks made by Kelly Tilghman on a recent broadcast and, again, extends our apologies to anyone who was offended. There is simply no place on our network for offensive language like this. While we believe that Kelly's choice of words was inadvertent and that she did not intend them in an offensive manner, the words were hurtful and grossly inappropriate. Consequently, we have decided to suspend Kelly for two weeks, effective immediately."

Concerned Aunt: Oh! I'm so horrified! I can't believe she said that! I'm so sorry dad... [starting to cry] I don't know how she got like this! I never taught her these things at home. What did I do worng all these years? [composed again] Well, I know one thing--she's grounded.

Golfweek Magazine, as part of a package of stories on the controversy involving Golf Channel anchor Kelly Tilghman's comment that players should "lynch [Tiger Woods] in a back alley," used the image of a noose on the cover of its Jan. 19 issue.
In an editorial in the magazine, the editors wrote: "Like it or not, Tilghman's 'Lynch him in a back alley' remark about Tiger Woods was national news. The debate about the severity of her punishment -- at this writing a two-week suspension -- fueled heated debate on Web sites, in newspapers and on national TV. The furor begs rational analysis."

"Chill" uncle: First of all, how do you ground a 19 year-old? Second of all, maybe we should listen to her once in a while. Maybe some of her opinions don't fit in with your dreams of the prim-and-proper nuclear family with Hallmark-style holidays, but that doesn't mean we should shoot them down. Maybe people in this country do need to have serious dialogue about euthanasia, or at least the values and tough decisions that an aging Baby-Boomer generation will force us all to examine.

"Clearly, what Kelly said was inappropriate and unfortunate, and she obviously regrets her choice of words," Finchem said in a statement. "But we consider Golfweek's imagery of a swinging noose on its cover to be outrageous and irresponsible. It smacks of tabloid journalism. It was a naked attempt to inflame and keep alive an incident that was heading to an appropriate conclusion."

Humorless great-uncle: How can you defend her?! What she said was bad enough, but she's sick in the head and has no morals. You should know better!
"Chill" uncle: I'm not trying to defend her, you self-righteous bore. I'm just saying that maybe this family should talk about these things once in a while instead of pretending that everything's fine all the time when it's not.
Anal retentive aunt: We were having a perfectly fine holiday until that girl had to open her mouth. Eveyone in this family agrees that she was wrong, and things were about to be fine again if you could just drop it!

"Jack was not speaking on behalf of the PGA Tour," spokesman Ty Votaw said Friday. "I can categorically tell you the PGA Tour has not threatened any advertising pull."

Typically-shy cousin: Wait... I'm part of this family too, and I can think for my--

"Most people who are objecting to it -- within the golf industry -- are saying this episode was just about over," Seanor said. "I think it's indicative of how, when you bring race and golf into the same sentence, everyone recoils."

"Chill" uncle: Fine? How can you say it's fine? It's never been fine. Why do you think the girl turned into such a rebel in the first place? You think that cynicism has nothing to do with this family? [turning to the concerned aunt] You couldn't fool your daughter with your perfect-family crap all these years, and now she's psychologically damaged. You finally have a chance to confront these issues and--possibly--salvage your relationship with your daughter... and you ground her?

"If we stopped the train every time somebody made a dumb remark that is potentially offensive," he is quoted as saying, "we'd never progress as a society."

"I wish we could have come up with something that made the same statement but didn't create as much negative reaction," he said. "But as this has unfolded, I'm glad there's dialogue. Let's talk about this, and the lack of diversity in golf."

"Chill" uncle: Look... What she said gave us a chance to address some tough issues that are gonna face this family in the near future and--not only that--a chance to sort out some major issues in this family. But you know what? If you wanna spend the rest of your life sneaking off to the guest bedroom closet with your bottle of vodka, knowing that your daughter will never speak to you again, be my guest. I don't really care.

Ten days after a Golf Channel anchor was suspended for her use of "lynch" in commentary on Tiger Woods, an editor was fired Friday for illustrating the controversy with a noose on the cover of Golfweek magazine.

Strong matriarchal figure: [to "chill" uncle] I think should leave now.
"Chill" uncle: Yes, mother. [walks out the front door]

"We apologize for creating this graphic cover that received extreme negative reaction from consumers, subscribers and advertisers across the country," Turnstile Publishing Co. president William P. Kupper Jr. said. "We were trying to convey the controversial issues with a strong and provocative graphic image. It is now obvious that the overall reaction to our cover deeply offended many people. For that, we are deeply apologetic."

Storng matriarchal figure: I'm so sorry to all of you the way my son acted. He means well, but he doesn't know when to stop himself sometimes.
Amicable grandfather: Hey, what was all this commotion I heard out here? I was on the crapper.
Anal-retentive aunt: We had to ask your nephew to leave.
Amicable grandfather: Over what the girl said?
Super-religious great-uncle: Yes.
Amicable grandfather: Sheesh! Leave the girl alone, already.

"We know we have a job ahead of us to re-earn the trust and confidence of many loyal readers," Babineau said. "Our staff is very passionate about the game. Our wish is that one regretful error does not erase more than 30 years of service we've dedicated to this industry."

Super-cheerful uncle: Well, now that we've got that mess all out of our way, let's all have dessert. We're not gonna let one little spat ruin another perfect holiday, are we?
Equally-cheerful wife: No, siree! Now who wants bundt cake?


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