Thursday, December 03, 2009

It's OK to be Interested in the Tiger Woods Drama

So Tiger Woods is human. Who knew?

You sure could have fooled me, with the way he slayed golf courses like the hero did to the dragons in one of those medieval yarns.

Human? Tell that to his fellow PGAers who are now merely notches on his belt. Tell it to Rocco Mediate, who had the 2008 U.S. Open in his hip pocket before Tiger lifted it in broad daylight. Tell it to anyone who's led a tournament on a Sunday, only to see Woods storm through, leaving broken dreams and birdies in his wake.

Tiger Woods, human? Not on the golf course, where he's shoved Nicklaus and Hogan and Palmer and Nelson and Jones aside, starting just out of diapers, for goodness sakes.

Tiger Woods, human? Not in the world of endorsements, either, where he's had the sneaker people and car folks and razor blade companies rubbing the palms of his hands for years.

Tiger Woods, human? Well, he married a gorgeous, Nordic model and had two beautiful children and theirs seemed to be a life lived inside a snow globe, not a fish bowl.

But something funny happened the last time that globe got shaken up.

When the faux snowflakes settled, the Woods' happy home looked different---immeasurably so.

Tiger Woods, human after all.

It's a long, long table at which he will now take his next meal. It's filled with politicians and CEOs and movie stars and just plain Regular Joes---all who've committed the very same "transgressions" Woods confessed to this week.

Not that he had much of a choice. The objects of his transgressions started coming out of the woodwork, one armed with text messages and e-mails, she said.

As a rule, the words "golf" and "scandal" go together like peanut butter and sauerkraut. You can find more titillating reads about static cling than you can about PGA tour members. As far as athletes go, golfers are a polo shirt and a pair of polyester slacks above bowlers in the personality department.

So Tiger Woods is again a trailblazer in the world of golf. He's provided the sport its very first, rootin' tootin' sexcapade.

He's human---and a man, a double whammy when it comes to having a sexual id. When a man says he regrets his actions (as Woods did in his public apology), what he really means is that he wishes like hell he'd never gotten caught. You think the affairs that have been alleged would have stopped had he not crashed his car early Saturday morning?

That's not to say that Tiger isn't sorry; I'm sure he is---and NOT just that he was busted. After your past catches up to you, out of breath but smirking, there's time for reflection. It's Olly Olly Oxen Free, so may as well sit down and think.

But should we care?

It's a fantasy world, some of these pundits live in. Must be, to think that someone of Woods' notoriety and fame is "just another guy." The revelation that he's human and not perfect isn't the issue here. That ought not to be what shocks us.

What's truly mind-boggling, to me, is the notion that this isn't news, that it's just a guy going through a tough time with his family.

I'll make a deal with those types: I won't give Tiger Woods any grief about what he's done in his private life, as long as you don't give grief to those who find this story fascinating.

You know of whom I speak. Those who cavalierly tell those who are following this story to "get a life," which I find terribly offensive. If you pass the scene of a serious car accident, which is filled with flashing lights and paramedics and police and concerned onlookers, and you stop to take a gander, do you need to "get a life"?

It's human nature to be fascinated with and have interest in the lives of celebrities and athletes. You think writes in a vacuum?

No, those who find the Tiger Woods drama interesting---and there can be many reasons why, other than pure lust for scandal---don't need to "get a life."

Just as long as they don't pass judgment on his.

1 comment:

amy said...

Nice post, Greg - well put!