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On Tigers, Hookers and Hypocrites

The media circus surrounding the 2010 Masters Golf Tournament ended Sunday when Phil Mickelson pulled away from the field to don the coveted Green Jacket of Augusta National. As golf tournaments go, it was a great show. But as usual, the media tried to hype everything surrounding the event from Mickelson’s family travails with breast cancer to the resurgence of the aged Viagra sect of the field, i.e., the old men in contention, Fred Couples and Tom Watson (at the ancient age of sixty actually still walking upright).

The main event involved the repentant Tiger Woods who has spent most of his time in the rough over the past six months. Tiger erred in his personal life. No one can argue that. But in what is supposedly one of the greatest events in sports, the media couldn’t focus on the competition without constantly alluding to Tiger’s past boudoirdic sins.

It’s time to get over it, give the poor guy a break and realize he’s one of the sport’s greatest athletes of all time and a real and flawed human being just like the rest of us. I don’t condone his past behavior, but that’s his personal life. He’s a figure on the world stage because of his golf skills. Let him be human.

Although his reception was for the most part warm at Augusta, there were those hypocrites who hoped for the worst every time he picked up a club. These self righteous and arrogant fools forget their own foibles and delight in the suffering of Tiger and no doubt anyone else. They pretend to take the moral high road while forgetting everything they’ve been taught by their “spiritual” leaders.

Consider the example of one woman in particular. When she was eighteen, she yielded her fleshly delights to a married man. She even ran away with him and bore him a son. He refused to marry her, but she never refused him. After using her for nine years, he was murdered by a couple of his employees. She was on her own with no means of support. She tried to return to her parent’s home, but her father would have nothing to do with someone with her standards, even if it was his own daughter. She was put up by some friars at a monastery. She apparently continued to have a great deal of difficulty resisting the urges of the flesh, but felt guilty after each tryst, so guilty, she would at times try to mutilate herself to make herself less appealing to men. She tried to kick her habit, but with limited success much to the delight of some of the friars.

She ultimately satiated her feelings of guilt by caring for orphans, the poor and the sick. She founded a hospital and tried to square the ledger for her past weaknesses. Her feelings of guilt proved to be so severe at times, she developed such bad eating habits that she nearly starved herself to death on more than one occasion. When deprived of food she was prone to hallucinating or as the friars elected to call it, having visions. She even prophesized the date of her own death. When you think about it, if you stop eating, that’s hardly a long shot. She died February 22, 1297.

In 1728, Pope Benedict XIII canonized her as Santa Margherita, Saint Margaret. She is the patron saint of Cortona, Italy. Her desiccated body still lies in the church named after her. She was an unmarried mother and a woman who certainly had more notches on the bed post than Tiger Woods. But she’s a Saint.

Don’t you think we could cut Tiger a little slack and let him try and get his life together without our being so judgmental? Maybe we could even let him play a little golf.

One Response

  1. Mr Woods may be human but he is definitely not “just like the rest of us”. He is paid an obscene amount of money to hit a ball with a stick. In the neighborhood of $100 mil thus far. I could live on that, but he’s banked an even larger sum, $900 mil, for endorsements. His income from playing golf is hardly significant compared to what he is paid for being TIGER. Does someone hold a knife to his throat and force him to appear in all those ads? Of course not. He’s a public figure by choice, a celebrity not all that different from Jon and Kate. If he craves privacy, he should go home Sunday evening and stay there until the next tournament begins Thursday morning, and stop hanging out in my New Yorker and Newsweek. And if the backstories, the cancerous wife and the cantankerous wife, seem to take precedence, well the producers have to try to generate interest somehow. I used to think the only thing more tedious than watching baseball is playing baseball, but I was wrong. Watching someone else play golf is definitely duller.


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