Well, I would’ve gotten here sooner but I was frustrated and tossed my first version of the Van Cynical Mailbag into a lake. Then I had to wait for a scuba diver to retrieve it. Sorry for the delay.
So let’s get cynical…
Van Cynical One, What do the boys in Ponte Vedra fine you for throwing a 3-iron in a lake, $10K?—Bob Ashley via Twitter
We’ll never know unless Rory tells us, Ashkisser. But fine him? They ought to give him a bonus. Guess what golf highlight went viral globally? Hint: Not J.B. Holmes making a 6-footer. Rory gave Doral coverage some needed buzz before Dustin Johnson and Holmes came along with those amazing aces. Rory’s toss put the tournament on the map. To borrow funnyman Norman Chad’s catchphrase: Pay the man, Shirley.
Van TosstheClub, Should Rory be fined or is it OK to let off some steam? And how far can you throw your 3-iron?—Klaugh56 via Twitter
Rory will probably be fined but hey, he just lost — I mean, settled a big lawsuit out of court—for $30 million. Any thousands he’s fined for tossing will be like you missing a dime that fell out of your pocket while you were riding in the cart. Also, Rory stood up to his toss, was duly apologetic, laughed it off and owned it. As for my 3-iron expertise, I’d have to plow through a junkyard in the basement to find my 3-iron. The age of hybrids means my 3-iron is sleeping with the fishes or in an old bag with some MacGregor blades, a TaylorMade 320 driver and the original Rossi putter. By the time I hunt that thing down, I’d be too tired to toss it anywhere except in the trash.
Vans, Who do you believe, Shane Ryan or Patrick Reed (regarding claims in a book that Reed cheated and stole while in college)? I’m giving the eyeball test edge to the writer.—Michael O’Connor via Twitter
I noticed that on Golf Channel, Reed focused on saying he wasn’t booted out of Georgia for cheating or stealing, it was for under-age drinking violations, which isn’t the same as saying he never cheated or stole. Mr. Ryan’s story on Reed seemed incredibly and thoroughly researched. Reed’s reaction will now put a spotlight on what had been a little-noticed story and give it quadruple the attention. That’s probably not a good play on his part.
Van Cynical, My old college roomie is a member at Seminole and Pine Valley. I’ve got a crack at one of them this year. Your suggestion?—Michael O’Connor via Twitter
There are no wrong answers to this question, Mannix. It’s like picking your date between Cindy Crawford and Christie Brinkley. I played Seminole for the first time a few weeks ago and it was terrific, a brilliant and subtle design and, oh yeah, a lot of bunkers, it seemed like. Pine Valley has a higher profile and perhaps a little more spectacle so I’d lean toward PV. Actually, what you guys really need is a threesome with a writer who can document your round afterwards for posterity. I could possibly make some room on my schedule. Please advise.
Van Sicko, I hate the hassle of renting a car on my golf trips. What are the odds of hiring Harrison Ford as my pilot?—CapBozo via Twitter
It’s kinda soon for the Harrison Ford joke, isn’t it, Cap? All I can say is, I’ve got a bad feeling about this…
Van Cellular, Tiger, a notoriously horrible tipper, is opening a restaurant. But not before he breaks ground on his chipping academy.—CapBozo via Twitter
That sounds a lot like the old Bob Uecker Passed Ball Academy, Cap. I hope that’s not some kind of trademark infringement. Tiger got an unfair label as a bad tipper. He’s not cheap, just thrifty. Shouldn’t you get back to work instead of dropping multiple Mailbag entries on me? Shh! Here comes your boss, Cap, and he looks pissed!
Sickle cell, Where do you stand on The Donald? I still haven’t decided if he’s a complete tool or good for golf. –Michael O’Connor via Twitter
Fill in your own Luke Donald joke here, Mannix. Look, you have to give credit to Donald Trump for buying low. Isn’t that Wall Street gold—buy low, sell high? Golf is in a recession (at best) and Trump is the highest profile buyer and remodeler you can get. He repackaged Doral and jazzed it up. Ditto for Turnberry. Golf needs Trump’s money and his public relations so it doesn’t matter if he’s a tool (I think he’s a shrewd showman who knows how to sell), he’s good for the business of golf. Check back in a decade to see how his golf investments pan out, however.