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Tiger Woods "Comeback" Over-Hyped Like Everything Else in His Life

Craig ChristopherAnalyst IMarch 23, 2010

WINDERMERE, FL - FEBRUARY 18:  Tiger Woods practices golf outside his home on February 18, 2010 in Windermere, Florida. Woods will make a statement at the PGA Tour headquarters this Friday morning (February 19, 2010), according to a notice on the PGA Tour's web site.  (Photo by Sam Greenwood/Getty Images)
Sam Greenwood/Getty Images

A couple of years ago, I wrote an article bemoaning the complete lack of rough edges on modern sportsmen like Roger Federer or Tiger Woods.

While Federer hasn’t been caught out to date, it appears that I may have been just a little bit wrong about the great Mr. Woods.

It seems that everyone’s darling Tiger has more rough edges than a bag full of wood rasps.

Tiger apparently got very “lonely” when on tour. But why be lonely when there is a seemingly endless supply of vacuous, gold-digging floozies who will line up to tend to your every whim?

The thing that makes we mortals smile is that even though he didn’t have to pay for hookers up front, he’s sure paying for them now!

But I really don’t care about that—it’s a matter for Tiger, his wife, and his conscience to sort out.

I also don’t care that Tiger has decided that his comeback event, after the meaningless and self-indulgent "indefinite" hiatus, should be at the Masters. Obviously, you can only do so much soul-searching, and it shouldn’t get in the way of a really big tournament.

I’m sure that Tiger would have overlooked the fact that, after being caught out as a shameless philanderer, to choose a comeback at one of the few remaining bastions of misogyny—Augusta National—may not have been the best choice from a symbolism point of view.

But that’s not Tiger’s fault.

I really don’t care that his image as a wholesome role model has been shattered, despite all of the efforts by Tiger and his minions to carefully cultivate it.

I do care that he still, through his charity, holds himself out to be a positive role model as the co-creator of the Start Something character development program, but I don’t care that much. Something tells me that he probably won’t be turning up to the character development classes in person for a while.

Those who insist on defending Tiger by claiming that his role model status is a media construct, not something that the man himself has created, should take the time to look at the range of services offered by his foundation. The Tiger Woods name is central to everything—the idea of being an anonymous benefactor apparently doesn’t appeal to him.

Maybe he hasn’t let everyone down by his actions, but all of those kids who he has helped and who once looked up to him now see something completely different and considerably less glamorous. But I really don’t care much about that either.

What I really care about is drawing comparisons between Woods’ return to the professional golf circuit and the inauguration of Barack Obama—as made by the head of CBS news and sports—even if it is only in media terms.

Comparing the return of a morally bankrupt athlete after the equivalent of an extended summer holiday to someone who may actually make a difference in the world is offensive—and stupid.

Woods is a seriously flawed guy who hits a golf ball for a living. Maybe he does it better than anyone else in the game today—and maybe better than anyone ever—but at the end of the day, he’s just a golfer.

Despite all of the media hype, Woods isn’t even vital to the game that he dominates. It survived for 900 years before Woods came along, and it will survive quite well without him when he goes—maybe even better. Some figures show that the number of casual golfers in the US has dropped during Tiger’s reign.

He won’t cure cancer, he won’t bring about world peace, he won’t even build a better mousetrap. To quote Monty Python, “He’s not the Messiah, he’s just a very naughty boy. Now, go away.”

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