Examining Tiger Woods' "State of the Eunuch" Address

Use your ← → (arrow) keys to browse more stories
Examining Tiger Woods'
Pool/Getty Images

Last week, Tiger Woods addressed the media in length about his recent marital and sexual transgressions, and offered apologies to many.

Were Woods’ words sincere, or were his actions simply the desperate machinations of a man eager to regain his dignity and good standing? Can Woods’ wife, Elin Nordegren, accept his apology? And will Woods make his return to tournament play at The Masters in April?

First things first. Contrary to popular opinion, and 135-1 odds in Las Vegas, the first words out of Woods’ mouth weren’t “I’m horny.” And, to the surprise of no one, Woods’ wife was not by his side. Nor was Luther Campbell. And, despite tasty 9-1 odds, Woods didn’t hit the stage to the intro music of Crystal Method’s “Name of the Game (Calling All Freaks).”

It was probably the best decision he’s made in months.

Woods was met onstage by the noise of hundreds of camera shutters, which sounded eerily like applause. But it didn’t seem to phase Woods at all. And that’s no surprise—he apparently feels comfortable being surrounded by “snappers.”

All kidding aside, Woods’ words sounded sincere, but sincerity, much like immorality, is a difficult-to-gauge attribute. Obviously, as a double-digit list of mistresses and an oblivious wife can attest, Woods is a master at sounding sincere. And, from what I hear, he loves “snow jobs.”

It’s likely Woods sounded sincere just as when he texted one of his girlfriends to “go to the bathroom and take a picture.” I’m sure he closed that message with the words “Sincerely, Tiger.”

After having previously fooled everyone, it’s difficult to trust Woods’ intentions, and difficult to believe they’re anything but self-serving. But isn’t that the point of beginning the healing process? To be self-serving?

Indeed, it’s more important for Woods to believe he’s forgiven than it is for people to actually forgive. Woods’ apology to the fans and media, and their subsequent acceptance or rejection, means nothing. The only apology of consequence is that to Nordegren.

And boy, does it take a pair of balls to apologize to your wife after such unfaithful behavior. It must take an even bigger set to expect her forgiveness. And if Woods and Nordegren are to remain a couple, those balls will firmly be in the grasp of Nordegren. As they say, the "ball's" in her court.

Woods no longer owns them, so why don’t we call his speech his “State of the Eunuch Address.”

Why on earth would Nordegren choose to stay with Woods? If she does, it can be for one reason only—Woods has somehow convinced her that his image is more important than their image. It seems senseless even to bother repairing what would be nothing more than a façade of a marriage anyway.

Would people think less of Woods if he didn’t at least attempt to make amends? Yes, and that’s part of the reason he’s doing it. Apparently, it was practically a sexless marriage in the first place; it almost certainly will be should Woods and Nordegren retain their married status. It’s a common belief that the marriage was a ploy to strengthen Woods’ marketing image.

Amazingly, that may now be the same reason for staying married.

It’s unclear whether Woods wrote the words to his speech himself, or if a high-priced speech writer did the honors. But he was all business. That’s how he is when he takes his hat off.

Woods without his hat, much like Nordegren with a golf club, means it’s a serious situation.

In any case, the delivery felt somewhat rehearsed and orchestrated, like a family photo spread for People magazine. If you somehow found the original copy of that speech, you’d probably see notes reminding Woods to “pause for four seconds,” or “stammer over these words,” or “come close to tears,” or “stare at the floor,” or “give that shameful look we talked about.” Woods nailed them all.

And what with Woods’ reference to Buddhism?

Sure, it sounded a bit out of place, but there’s something to be said for the benefits of an Eastern-influenced recovery plan. I commend him.

If you can’t find the path to enlightenment through "booty," then the next logical step is finding it through Buddha.

Buddha looks to be a jolly old fellow, and I’m sure his philosophies can lead Woods to a greater understanding of self and a renewed sense of devotion. Maybe a meditative regimen could cure Woods of his addictions, and convince him to discuss them.

His endorsement deals may be gone, but Woods could devote his experiences to others, and then delve into the untapped potential of the infomercial market, hawking his new self-help book, “The Tao of Tang,” or his instructional dating video, “Lying Tiger, Hidden Salami.” Even rehab guru Dr. Drew Pinsky would agree—the road to recovery is paved with dollar bills.

Finally, at the speech’s end, when Woods embraced his mother, all of the women Woods has “sweet-talked” got the answer to the question they’ve longed to know—Woods does, in fact, kiss his mother with that same mouth. It was likely the most innocent exchange Woods has shared with a woman in years.

Considering what he’s been through in the last three month, is it reasonable to expect Woods to make his return to the game at The Masters? Augusta national and CBS certainly hope so.

Will a Woods’ return at the 2010 Masters make it the most watched golf tournament in history? Absolutely, especially with a Woods-Jesper Parnevik grouping. This could potentially be Woods' second disastrous pairing with a Swede.

At this point, though, the PGA would simply settle for a “watched” tournament, and not necessarily the “most watched” tournament. Golf without Tiger has been like Tiger without sex—it's "missing" something. It's boring, trite, and insipid.

And let's face it, not everyone likes it "banal."

And it’s totally appropriate that Woods make his triumphant return at the Masters; that’s where he burst onto the scene in 1997 by winning his first major. Now, after three months away from the game, as well as a lengthy stint of abstinence, he’s got to be ready to “burst” again.

Heck, it’s about time for a "coming out" party; Woods has spent the last half-decade celebrating with practically non-stop "going in" parties. A “grand entrance”? That used to be what Woods paid to bed a prostitute. The Masters is his chance to bury that idea and get back to doing what he does best, or second best.

Augusta National is known for its rich tradition and its reserved, polite galleries. Will the tournament be willing to handle the spectacle that Woods’ return would entail? I’m almost positive Augusta is up for it, as is CBS. But does Woods want his return to be on such a grand stage? It will be a circus, and will likely be the first time John Daly's clothing goes unnoticed.

Can Woods handle the comments he’s sure to hear from some wisecracking, rogue patron? Could a comment like “Get in the holes” crack Woods’ steely demeanor, which he will need most to maintain his concentration? And what of the comments he can't hear? People will gossip, and Woods will know they're talking about him.

There will be even more whispering at the Masters. Caddie Steve Williams better have his evil eye at the ready, because he'll be staring down quite a few spectators. The question is, will Williams be able to hold his tongue as a bold spectator tells Williams that keeping sexual relations with multiple partners under wraps is akin to having an unlimited supply of head "covers."

And you know it will draw a chuckle when announcers mention Woods' position on the leaderboard, in which the words "strokes" and "behind" will be unavoidable.

After a nice wedge from the sand and par putt on the par five, eighth hole, will CBS announcer Jim Nantz be able to refrain from commending Tiger for his ability to get "up and down?"

Augusta will do everything in its power to attract Woods, including extra security and a 10-second broadcast delay, if needed. After weeks in sex rehabilitation and suffering from a lack of action, I’m sure Woods could easily be “Masters-baited.” Besides, I doubt Woods remembers the last time he took a pass on a “threesome.”

Will Woods strike the same level of fear and intimidation in his opponents as he did before his scandal? Before the divot hit the fan, Woods’ ability to “stare down” an opponent equaled his flair for “going down” on a stripper.

When Woods was “in the zone” on the golf course, it was as if he was in a catatonic state. Now, his rivals know that should they see him like that on the course, chances are he’s not thinking of his next shot, but of his next sexual conquest. Can you imagine Phil Mickelson whispering to Ernie Els, “Look Ernie, Tiger’s in that ‘pussy cat-atonic state.’” And Els replying “You’re right, Phil. I believe he needs to think outside the box.”

Now that his fellow golfers know his weakness, they’ll use that knowledge to their advantage. The intimidation factor will be gone. Woods’ stare isn’t the only thing that’s lost its penetrating ability.

And what about distractions? It won’t take much to take Woods out of his game. What’s going to happen when Woods sees a pretty lady as he surveys his second shot on Augusta’s par four, seventh hole? Why, "fairway wood," of course.

And what happens if Woods actually wins The Masters? Will some shameless golf analyst praise the "courage" Woods displayed in overcoming such obstacles to win. The last thing Tiger deserves is to be lionized.

Sadly, that will be an inevitable occurrence.

It will be amazing to see how quickly Woods' flaws are sidestepped once he starts winning again. And he will. It may not be at The Masters, but he will soon regain form and dominate golf. And while his family values won't earn him any endorsements, his golfing will.

If Woods is made out to be the bad guy in professional golf, you can bet he'll embrace that role, and use it as major motivation. Like his apology showed, Woods doesn't care what we think, just what we see.

Load More Stories

Out of Bounds

Golf

Subscribe Now

We will never share your email address

Thanks for signing up.