Tiger Woods is a Mess. But So Are We.

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I’m amazed at the number of people who’ve asked why I haven’t written about Tiger Woods.

My first thought… has something happened to Tiger? (for the uninitiated, this is a little something called sarcasm). 

We Hardly Knew You.

The truth is I haven’t blogged about him because the situation isn’t exactly funny or educational.

At least the good type of educational. 

There’s certainly a lot to learn.

I hate to say it, but I think as time goes by we may find out there are bigger issues that have caused his reckless behavior.

I may be proven wrong (wouldn’t be the first time… today… or well, any day), but I’ve worked in schools long enough to recognize when kids or adults act out in ways that are so out of the ordinary, something else is going on.

It could be drugs, alcohol, childhood issues, or who knows… but there’s something that isn’t quite right (I’m not a psychologist, but I’ve never come up with a theory that I didn’t think was pure genius).

I’m not making excuses for Tiger because no matter what, he is an idiot.

Maybe the biggest idiot in the history of mankind.  Lucky for him, another famous person will one-up his idiocy in the next few months (won’t the rich, famous, and powerful ever learn?).

Don’t believe me?

Woods has made President Clinton look like a man who has excellent personal judgment. 

The only people worse than Tiger are the ones around him.  For them to look the other way for all of these years is a crime in itself.

This once again proves my theory that all of us need to be surrounded by people who will tell us when we are wrong.  That’s a gift school administrators (and everyone) can give ourselves. 

Hire people who are smarter and better people than you.

Don’t try to be the smartest person in the room (and note to Tiger… you weren’t the smartest… by a long shot).

No matter how much blame I place on Tiger and his posse of doofuses, we are also to blame.

Parents, sports fans, and society as a whole. 

Tiger evidently has some problems.  And I mean problems besides running from his wife, writing checks to half the waitresses in America (and I’m assuming there are some overseas…), and having the entire world judge and make fun of him for at least the next 60 years.

I can remember when his biggest problems were drunk guys yelling “You the Man!” in the middle of his swing.

Our problem isn’t that Tiger Woods has disappointed us.  It’s that we continue to allow athletes the opportunity to disappoint us.

He’s human.

Obviously, very human.  Like a spoiled frat boy who has credit cards with no limit.

His fans (me included) believed his commercials.

We forgot those companies were selling us a product.  And Tiger Woods was the product.

When companies advertise, they don’t tell us the downside to their product.  They accentuate the positives.

Evidently, they REALLY accentuated the positives with Tiger.

He’s a golfer.

A very rich guy who can hit a little white ball.  That’s it. 

That’s the whole story.

He’s not a role model.

He’s not someone our kids should look up to.  He’s a golfer with terrible judgment (and a bit of a potty mouth).

If we want to watch him golf for entertainment, that’s great.

If we think his athletic abilities are an indication of his morals, we are wrong.  Those are two distinctly different things.

Our society overpays and overworships athletes.

This starts in grade school and goes all the way to professional sports.

Tiger’s priorities are out of whack.

But so are ours.


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9 Responses to “Tiger Woods is a Mess. But So Are We.”

  1. Charlie A. Roy
    on Dec 12th, 2009
    @ 3:49 pm

    A well written post. Our culture’s obsession with sports is a bit much. Now don’t get me wrong if it wasn’t for my left arm and a stitched piece of leather called a baseball I doubt I would have attended college. One issue I see that occasionally hinders school reform is this sports obsession. We all know the stories of million dollar stadiums and slashed fine arts budgets but I’d point more towards the Head Football Coach to Athletic Director to Principal to Superintendent track. Now granted there are a number of fine teachers who are also fine football coaches. A number of fine ADs who become fine principals, and a number of fine principals who become fine superintendents. But does this traditional path sometimes leave the focus in leading schools on maintaining and promoting winning sports traditions at the expense of everything else? If I’m a crazy nut in considering this an issue let me know.

    One of the joys of American education is the completeness of the secondary experience: academics, athletics, arts, clubs and activities. Balancing them all well is another task all to itself.

  2. Unklar
    on Dec 12th, 2009
    @ 6:10 pm

    Tiger more than likely didn’t have a childhood. I firmly believe that kids need unstructured time as they grow up. Play with string and scrap blocks of wood. Get really dirty. Eat some dirt (and I mean literally, not figuratively).

  3. Anthony D.
    on Dec 13th, 2009
    @ 12:36 pm

    Plain & Simple kids look up to athletes, its part of the price these people pay to be famous. They all want the recognition but none of the responsibility.

    First let me say that what Tiger did was WRONG!!! With that said, it isn’t as bad as others who do drugs, batter spouses, abuse children or even commit murder then ask us for forgiveness which we always do. I recently read an article in the paper about the racist comments Fuzzy Zoeller made about Tiger when he was 18. Tiger had a chance to let the guy off the hook when he apologized by making a comment accepting the apology which would have sent a positive message to kids. But Tiger gave no comments on the situation and Fuzzy’s career and endorsements were gone. Now what will Tiger ask from the public for his mistake? Who will defend him? Probably many because he owns the PGA – and they fear him never playing again. Safe to say Tiger’s reputation will survive, but he was one of the few good guys left who could have made a difference to our kids who are faced with so many por role models. What will he say when asked about his behavior? How will he try to spin it?

    Tiger is human just like us, and his mistake also human and hurt only him and his family. Should we forgive him? Yes, but he did not give another the same opportunity

  4. Sandy Natham
    on Dec 13th, 2009
    @ 4:33 pm

    Really nice post about Tiger.

  5. Christy
    on Dec 14th, 2009
    @ 6:48 pm

    Well said, and something I try to get through to my kids, although without much success.

  6. Kevin Gassen
    on Dec 18th, 2009
    @ 10:05 pm

    I really like what you wrote here – it’s very good. Thanks for posting this. As someone who has struggled with an addiction myself, I really appreciate what you’ve written.

  7. Phil McColley
    on Jan 8th, 2010
    @ 11:39 am

    Excellent read. I just passed this onto a colleague who talking about Tiger. He actually bought me lunch because I found it for him. So let me say, thanks for lunch!

  8. Alfredo Martinez
    on Jan 10th, 2010
    @ 2:41 pm

    Tiger will be back for the Masters…and yep, he’s going to win it.

  9. Ivy Kuroki
    on Apr 10th, 2010
    @ 2:43 am

    I think that being a professional athlete is something that most people will never fully understand, myself included. I dislike how people make judgements about Tiger’s idiocracy, because they will never know what it’s like to be in his shoes. Yes, it is very likely that he had taken for granted his influence on younger generations. And yes, he has let down more people than he might ever realize. But that’s all part of his path to becoming a better person. Our ultimate goal should always be to learn from our mistakes in order to become the best person that we can, and this just shows that Tiger Woods is human. Of course there is a lot riding on his back, he is he best. But even the best make mistakes of the worst kind. I admire Tiger for being able to live through the lime light no matter what. My thoughts and prayers are with the man who has had to face more criticizm than ANYONE who has faulted in a similar way.

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