Doc Cleveland: JFK's Birthday
I'm shocked by this whole Tiger Woods scandal. Not by Tiger's behavior, of course, but by the silence that seems to be accompanying it, at least in my circle of friends on Facebook.
I really expected to be bombarded today with status updates addressing the emerging Tiger Woods scandal. I expected them to be mainly from women expressing some degree of disappointment or outrage. Instead, I only saw one status update that fit the bill.
Maybe my Facebook friends just aren't indicative of society at large, but to me, this lack of response is a much bigger shock than anything that's happened in TigerWorld over the past week.
I mean, let's be real, on the surface, this is a fascinating story - on a 1-10 scale rating the salaciousness of celebrity scandals, this rates an 11 at least. This is Eliot Spitzer, plus Kobe Bryant, plus Nick Hogan, plus Hugh Grant, all thrown into one juicy mixing pot.
You've got your billionaire sports hero, a rare breed of athlete at the top of his game, one of if not the best in his sport ever, beloved by millions and the beneficiary of a squeaky clean public image. You've got your super hot chick for a wife, a couple of cute kids, and a seemingly perfect life.
And in the space of a week's time, it's all come crashing down, literally, with a late-night car accident that allegedly followed a particularly intense marital dispute, which allegedly followed a series of affairs Tiger has had with one or more women (The specifics are still annoyingly vague, but Tiger has admitted to 'transgressions' on his Web site - note the plural use of the word).
Usually, in these kinds of situations, the outrage you hear from America's peanut galleries is deafening - which to my ears resembles the sound of thousands of glass houses falling down as judgmental people throw their sad, schadenfreude-filled stones.
But maybe, just maybe, we're starting to learn that perfection is a myth, and idol worship a waste of time. That no matter how superhuman Tiger is on the golf course, that off of it, he is just like the rest of us, utterly flawed and remarkably human. Monogamy may or may not be the most moral path for humans, but it certainly is not the natural path. In my opinion, it would be more shocking if Tiger actually hewed to his carefully constructed image and didn't succumb to the temptations that must surround him at every corner.
Is Tiger a hypocrite because he actively helped cultivate that sparkling family man image? Of course.
Should his behavior in anyway take away from his accomplishments on the golf course? Of course not.
Does Tiger really have a right to expect privacy at this time when he has earned hundreds of millions of dollars from regular folk who bought into the Tiger mystique? That's a much tougher question to answer. Tiger made the vast majority of his fortune off the golf course, selling not just his athletic prowess but a story and image that he was incapable of living up to. If he wishes to keep raking in the sponsorship millions, he may have some 'splainin to do.
But it's also past time we question why we fall for these obviously man-made mythologies in the first place. For now, I'm considering the relative silence on this issue a small sign of progress.