I didn’t even realize the Tiger Woods thing was today. Mostly because I didn’t care, but also because it is hard to keep track of when something so lusted for by the 24 hour media is actually coming to fruition. To go a step further, I also knew this would be the only thing ESPN will be showing clips of until he either saves a child from a forest monster with ties to child pornography or blows his brains out on the 17th at Sawgrass. That’s just what we drive people to these days. That’s our jam.
I am not one to condone what Tiger did to his family. I am also not one to really care. Call me a pessimist, but athletes are role models, not life models. Tiger’s ROLE is as a golfer. If you are a young golfer, Tiger is a good guy to pattern yourself after. That’s because he puts it in the hole. Same time, if you are someone looking to not sleep with hookers in Vegas, maybe Tiger is not the best role model for that part of your life. That’s for the same reason he’s a good golfer.
Tiger got up there today and said everything he needed to say. Compared to the baseball players who gave half ass answers about their steroid use or refused to say anything at all, Tiger did a good job. He basically told everyone he was sorry for being a piece of rump butter to his wife and family. There was nothing else he had to do. He didn’t even really have to do this. Mainly because none of this stuff is our business. Not even at all. Not even a little bit. About halfway through his speech, I was like, this is it. I will write about this and probably go back to treating Tiger and every golfer the way I always have: Like they do not exist.
The whole time this coverage is proceeding on ESPN, I keep thinking that this is NOT about sports. The part that is about sports is so, so minimal. It’d take five minutes. Tiger Woods’ personal life becomes a distraction and the golfer has not decided when will be the right time to start playing golf again. That’s all we needed. That was the sports part. The rest was TMZ BS that is out of place on ESPN. Shame on them for confusing it. It’s as bad as their cross-promos for upcoming movies during SportsCenter. They are pulling an MTV and it is garbage. The M stands for music, only there is no music. Back in the day, ESPN played like eight times as many World’s Strongest Men competitions to fill up time. Now, we get hours of Tigergate coverage. Sweet. I’ll take the Lithuanian dude dragging a fire truck around Universal Studios Florida in 1992.
Tiger said it best. Let me paraphrase. He said I am rich and powerful, I thought I’d get away with it, I didn’t think I’d be in a shit storm, I acted like an asshole, I’m sorry to people who expected more of me. Yeah. Pretty much nails it.
I think there’s two things going on here. The first is that Tiger doesn’t have any added responsibility to be a good husband just because his job is playing golf on television and peddling Nike golf gear to overweight business men catching 18 holes on business trips as they (let’s just be honest) sleep around on THEIR wives. Just saying.
On the flip, Tiger doesn’t have LESS responsibility to his wife because he is famous. He made his vows. He really screwed up there. I still don’t think it’s my business. I still feel weird covering it right now because I hate this story. That said, I hate everyone’s reactions to it more.
Say what you want about Tiger, he is a great golfer. He deserves to golf. He needs to golf to keep the sport healthy and generate jobs. Golf before Tiger was boring. Now it is clearly something better. It is only MOSTLY boring. Well done.
I don’t want people to confuse family responsibilities and golf responsibilities. Tiger’s infidelity has zero to do with golf itself. He has every right to play golf just like Kobe has every right to play basketball. What’s messed up was it almost feels like Kobe benefited from being accused of something worse than adultery and then being proven innocent of the larger crime. How many times have you heard people say “Kobe is only guilty of cheating on his wife, he isn’t a rapist”? With Tiger, it’s so unheard of that he cheated. We’d accepted that part with Kobe within the first ten minutes. Hell, Laker fans were hoping that’s all it was. Do any of you REALLY think Kobe has only slept around once?
Just like steroids, if we really knew what pro athletes did when they weren’t on the field of battle, we’d probably see that it was more like 75% of the league(s) roiding, cheating, gambling and worse. They are human beings given incredible power. Not everyone is Frodo here. Most people when entrusted with the Ring would flip out and start sawing dudes heads off and making it rain. That’s what made a hobbit so special. That and his hairy feet.
Don’t get me wrong at all, Tiger is a bad husband. I feel terrible that his kids will get older and literally have to watch these interviews for the rest of their lives, because you know ESPN will play them forever, even if they aren’t super interesting. As my buddy Dave tweeted, I feel bad for Buddhism for getting brought to a very messy dinner table. I feel bad for the other golfers that will get punished for being whiners about this situation. I feel bad that I have wasted this much of your time on Tiger woods.
Unless he kills a school bus of superheroes heading to a third world country to fight terrorist dragons and sleeps with the bus driver, I’ll leave this story alone. Unfortunately for you, no one else will.