Charlie Pierce once wrote a celebrated story about Tiger Woods. Now, he writes about Woods again. Slide on over to Grantland and read "The Burdened Walk":
I remembered that, once, he had looked as though he walked on air. He had looked as though his feet never touched the ground. He had looked as though his club managed to strike the ball perfectly within a private reality. Even his divots had looked cleanly cut as they sailed through the clear air. You could have used one of them for a welcome mat. Once upon a time, I remembered, Tiger Woods had looked as though he played golf in a self-contained universe that he carried around with him. I remembered all this as I crouched behind the green on the 13th hole of the Oak Hill Country Club in Rochester, New York, on Sunday afternoon, and watched Tiger Woods, who was standing in the shade a little ways down the fairway and rotating his upper body to the left and to the right, stretching his back muscles.
Jesus, I thought to myself, that's something I do.
In fact, I always do it before I swing a club. I don't know that it does me any good. Very often, I do it as a distraction and, perhaps, as a kind of preemptive alibi; that way, when the ball goes where it's not supposed to go, which is very often, I have established that I have termites eating my spine or something. Now there was Tiger Woods, who used to look as though he were made of electrified wire, cranking up the sacroiliac the way that I do. And, yes, he'll be 38 this December, but there was a time in which he was so young that he looked ageless, a time in which the future blended so seamlessly with the present that the future looked as inevitable and predictable as the past. I met him then, and the aftermath was somewhat unusual, and this was the first time we'd been in the same area code since the afternoon we had spent together, and he'd had his picture taken, and he'd told some jokes, and had wondered whether or not women followed basketball players because they thought black men had larger penises, and now he was down under a tree, doing the same back exercises that I do. He knocked it a little ways past the hole, drained a putt coming back, and ground out another par.
[Photo Credit: AP]