Monday, February 22, 2010

Another Car Wreck

Of all the phrases I've heard people say following Tigerpology 2010, this one is the most annoying. "Give him credit for standing up there and saying all that. It wasn't easy."

Yeah, it also wasn't an option.

He gets credit for it, like you get 200 points credit on the SAT for just signing your name.

Tiger said the least he possibly could, in the most chickenshit manner, to a comically staged room full of cronies - the commissioner included.

Forgive me for not welling up in tears like Charlie Rymer over that.

It was almost like a second car crash. Only this time, deliberate.

His robotic opus of therapy inspired talking points hit all the scripted notes. Some TV commentators insisted that he wrote the entire thing himself. This was a laughable assertion that was both unknowable and pointless even if true. For a guy with a team of advisers ballsy enough to dictate terms like this for an apology, to think they didn't at least poke their nose a bit into the script proves that gullibility is a chronic condition.

Was it sincere? Is he a changed man? Will a better Tiger emerge? Draw your own conclusions and have fun. They aren't really relevant to what will happen next. It's not like he had been suspended from the PGA Tour until he said he was sorry to the Commissioner at Tour HQ and really meant it. Tiger is basically locking his golf clubs in the trunk in an act of contrition, love, and recovery in order to save his marriage, his kids, and something north of $300 million.

Timetable on how long that's gonna take? Ha. Pick a date and tournament. It'll be the hot office pool of the summer. As soon as he uttered the line about how he would "return to golf ONE day" I think I heard Finchem's tongue get lodged in his esophagus. Don't think for a minute that Tiger doesn't just love the suspended financial agony he's putting the Tour through. Brett Favre ain't got nothing on him.

Yet for all the scoring elements of his scripted mea culpa, he committed more than one tactical error.

The largest, I think, is a trap he has now baited and set regarding the facts of "Zero Hour" of this entire crisis. The whole thing started with every sports fan in America hearing one way or another: "Tiger Woods has been in a car crash, and taken to the hospital."

By angrily disputing some of the more salaciously speculated accounts of that crash - accounts that grew like mold in the musty tabloid vacuum that he himself created by going underground for almost 3 months - Woods made it relevant again.

He has now - in essence - necessitated a plausible accounting of the crash in his own words. It is not enough to just say: "I'm not discussing that. It's between me and Elin." It is not enough to just say: "The police have closed their case."

"Some people have speculated that Elin somehow hurt or attacked me on Thanksgiving night. It angers me that people would fabricate a story like that. Elin never hit me that night or any other night. There has never been an episode of domestic violence in our marriage, ever. Elin has shown enormous grace and poise throughout this ordeal. Elin deserves praise, not blame."

As Bill Simmons points out with lazer like clarity on the matter:

To be fair, Tiger, you crashed your car while leaving your house at 2:30 a.m., you weren't wearing shoes, your neighbors found you asleep on the sidewalk and your wife holding a golf club, the back windows of your cars were smashed in, the accident wasn't reported for 12 hours, and then you disappeared for 10 weeks. You never told us what happened. You got terrible advice from your advisors and opened the door for people to imagine crazy scenarios for what happened that night. Don't blame us.

And if I may add, when you say that false stories like that "anger" you, then it only follows that you would set the record straight. I'll take Woods at his word, even if he's lying. I understand that any admission of Elin's rage would not only add to her hurt, but also put her in possible (though not likely) legal jeopardy. But if so, he'll need to replace that larger, possibly wife protecting lie, with a knockoff handbag of a lie. "We argued a bit, I went out to blow off steam, dropped my cell phone on the floor, went to reach for it, and then BAM!"

There. Fine. Wrap it up, I'll take it.

Otherwise, he's just a big fucking liar, in which he deserves nobody's respect whatsoever. Or there's still stuff he wants to hide. Like perhaps a drinking and/or prescription drug abuse issue.

If I were a golf writer covering the Tour, getting to the Zero Hour facts is precisely where I would start whether Tiger likes it or not. Because hard as it may be for him to understand, more than a few journalists still care about pursuing and reporting the truth, especially when they themselves or others have grossly misrepresented the facts. If the "Elin The 9-Iron Wielding Window Smashing Maniac" narrative was indeed wildly unfounded for reasons still untold, then let's do our part to bury that once and for all.

There will be plenty more questions coming his way, ones that he will probably think deserve to remain off limits. Sample questions might include....

Q: You were injured in that car crash. How much of it do you remember, and did you fear for your life or golf career at any point?

Q: What kind of surgery - if any - did this accident require?

Q: If this rehab journey is going to take a long time, months, years and beyond, then why can't you return to work, your career, in a reasonable amount of time, WHILE you are continuing to change your life for the better off the course and repair your marriage?

Q: Are you disappointed with any of your sponsors who dropped you?

Q: Have you added any new people to your management team, or dropped anybody in the wake of this?

Q: Do you plan to apologize directly to fellow tour players in person about the damage your actions have cause the Tour, or the questions they have had to answer about you?

Q: Will you become more fan friendly once you return as part of your rehabilitation?

Q: Why didn't you do more to avoid holding this press conference during a live tournament day? Explain more clearly why your schedule demanded this?

I'd also love to know if he plans to start openly quoting Buddhist scripture after every win. The Suvarnaprabhasa Sutra is also known as the "Golden Light Sutra" and is central to the confession of faults.

One Japanese Buddhist proverb puts it simply: bonna kunu.

Or in other words, "all lust is grief."

No shit.


  1. Eldrick is a lying cheater who doesn't deserve any further consessions from the media. He no longer should be given the privledge of dodging the media: he lost that privledge when he tried to manipulate the car crash with his lying spin.

    Get back on tour Tiger and stop all this other nonsense. And when the questions do come, ANSWER THEM WITHOUT SPIN. Stop lying and start winning again. please.

  2. He looked like a Taliban hostage reading a message that was written by his captors.

  3. Q: Why are you trying to "Get A Grip on Physics" at 2:30 AM?

  4. tiger has now entered the realm of gayness and toolbox. i was rooting for him only to break jacks records because jack is a tool and hangeroner. but now i must root against the new tool du jour tiger.

  5. Give me a break Czabe. I agree with you on most things but this is way off. What did Tiger do to you? To me? Nothing! He cheated on his wife, just like thousands of other celebs and star althetes have in the past and will in the future. Big Deal. I don't give a damn.
    He disappeared during the golf offseason and didn't give a proper accounting of what he's been doing. So what?
    He owes an explanation and apology to his business partners, his sponsors and his family. He doesn't need to stand up there and take questions from "journalists" looking to make their big story by asking Tiger the "gotcha questions". As for the Accenture Match Play Championship. I have heard Accenture mentioned more times in the past 3 days than I have in the past 3 years. Was there even a top 10 player in the field over the weekend? I wonder how those ratings are going to shake out? Apology to the Tour players? Those who have seen fit to throw him under the bus? Those same guys that are making insane cash now that he has turned the Tour into an ATM machine for average players over the past 10 years? Are we as golf fans supposed to rely on Phil, Jesper, Sergio and Ernie to carry the Tour?
    Tiger is not like Brett (should I stay or should I go) Farve. The NFL will run just fine with Brett on his tractor.
    But let's Face it. Like it or not, the PGA Tour needs Tiger. He knows it. He doesn't have to play by the same rules as everyone else. Being outraged that he plays by his own rules seems crazy to me.

  6. and one more reason to beleive tiger is a gay tool is the stupid black escalade with pimp ghetto rims. real nice. thats what you do if you live in the hood, are a rapper or under 25.

  7. According to the ladies...Tiger is a tool, but certainly not gay (although I understand that this is what teenagers use as an all-purpose negative characterization).

    Tiger should just send Elin a check and then embrace his alternative life-style. Sure would be a lot more fun than doing rehab in Mississippi (is Farve there too?)

  8. Tiger should get back to golf, tell Elin he's not going to cheat on her anymore and if she leaves him, she leaves him. Half of all marriages fail. Almost always for much less than this. He should let journalists write whatever they want and don't try to refute them. Just focus on playing golf and keeping his pants on.

  9. I don't give a damn in the slightest if someone bangs strange on the side. If he would have been guilty of selling crack or committing murder than that's another story. He commited adultery. Wow! He's a MAN with OPPORTUNITIES not given to the ordinary person.

    Play golf and tell the media to suck it.

  10. What was not addressed in the "apology" was that Tiger did not engage in a one-off affair. This was a lifestyle choice for him, and he got caught. Regardless of how many guys who think it's okay to cheat, there will always be consequences. This is not about golf. Tiger's knee surgery was about golf. This is about life. I listened to a body language expert describe what she saw, and she said that he showed no emotion, neither sadness nor anger, in his statement, no matter how his words read on paper. The guy is still in denial. If golf success and records were all there is, then sure, get back to golf and tell everyone to STFU. But that's not the case here. It's not the case when the unknown man or woman in America cheats on their spouse either, no matter what kind of moral relativism kool-aid you have imbibed. Sports icons need to know this before they destroy themselves, as do politicians. Affairs are nuclear bombs, not smart bombs.