Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Crouching Tiger

The Tiger Woods publicists, the best apologists money can buy, have had a full week to craft an apology. And given the challenges, it's not bad. I see four points they hope to convey: Family man, really sorry, go away, let’s all hate the media.

I think they waited this long, praying for some international calamity to share the heat. But no mushroom cloud bloomed over Omaha. Just more disclosures on their own side, all the more tantalizing because they’re coming out drip by drip. Better a big bang; get it over with at once.

So the best spinners in all the land desperately grabbed this linchpin: “I let my family down.” A phrase typically employed to apologize for more modest disappointments, as in, we didn’t make it to Disneyworld this year, or I missed my son’s Pop Warner Football game, or my daughter will have to go to junior college.

Now we learn this very elastic phrase, “I let my family down,” stretches to include fucking a succession of cocktail waitresses over a number of years while the wife was home with the children.

The apology goes on to say:
“I am dealing with my behavior and personal failings behind closed doors with my family.”

How’d you like to go to that Christmas party? I’ll just leave my fruitcake by the mailbox.

On balance, and on the other hand, and to be fair, when I think of some of my transgressions in this life, and there have been some doozies -- really, I cover my head with a veil just at the very thought of -- oh, never mind. What was my point? Oh yes, when faced with the fall-out, there was no elegant phrase at my disposal. No team to buck me up and argue my virtues, as in, “Sure, that happened, but she once rescued a kitten.”

Still, membership in the club of unfamy has its privileges. I could always leave town for awhile. Hole up and hide out. Because, other than those involved, the rest of the world was a safe haven. No one else really cared. Thankfully, no one else thought it any of their business.


  1. "No one else cared." Hiker, I bet everyone here cares about your doozies. But I wouldn't tell mine either. On the other hand, something tells me your doozies are more interesting than mine.

    ". . . this very elastic phrase." You are wickedly good. As someone said a month or so ago, I don't want to give up your gems, but they ARE gems, and I wonder if you should confine them to us. (I hope you go on including us--we won't tell The New Yorker. Promise.)

    Bob Lutz, who's way high up at GM, was quoted today as saying he and everyone were "genuinely saddened" by the departure of whatshisname as CEO. How many hundreds of times have I wondered about these PR euphemisms for us, the peasant public: "Do they really expect us to believe this shit?"

    Apparently they do. Ditto for many bosses I've had. Maybe some of us do, but it's a hard pill, and I don't even open my mouth anymore.

    More and more, the big question of "how we know what we think we know" both interests and defeats me. Name one source of information we can trust. Public TV and radio are as close as I can come, but "trust" is a gigantic word.

    Once again, am I this long-winded or is your satire that good? I choose the latter.

    By the way, I don't care what's going on with Tiger. A major success of your satire is that your points go WAY beyond the escapades of a golf genius.

    Once again, thanks.

  2. Of mushroom clouds and cocktail waitresses...
    Trust in the official "line"?
    You have to go of the country, sometimes, in order to even come close to the truth.
    PR euphemisms seem to go unchallenged, at least in the corporate media eye. What otherwise passes for bullshit has become an accepted form of etiquette amongst the circles of the high and mighty, meaning not you or I, a sort of formalized ritual that dare not be broken, but adhered to in some strange fashion, as though on fear of death and execution.
    Or, more likely, distraction.
    Do you remember the name of that congressman who jumped up and called Obama a liar to his face? (I thought, mistakenly, Pelosi would have a stroke at that very minute, but she didn't. Too bad)
    I sure don't, but only as a measure of self-preservation, or I might succumb to a fit of apoplexy, or worse yet, outright activism. Nowadays, where's the profit in that?
    I guess it just goes to show that you can have it both ways-grab all the cake and eat it, too.
    Money talks and bullshit walks.

  3. Tiger better get Kobe on the horn like yesterday and get the number to that diamond store or he'll have an ex-wife no matter what BS spin he says.

  4. Right up there with all the disgraced CEOs who quit to spend more time with their families. Right.

  5. The higher they climb the harder they fall or something to that effect. I'm pretty darn old to still be believing that there some?? many?? any? men that can't be wooed from their wife and children by a cocktail waitress. My mother told me, more than once, "There are worse things than being alone." Maybe I'll give Mrs. Woods a ringy dingy and share that.

    And while I"m at it, I'm sick and damn tired of that pathetic insincere line about "letting the family down"!! Why not come clean and say, " I couldn't keep my pants zipped and didn't give a rip what it did to my wife and family."

    Thanks for the soapbox KB. Someone else may have it now.

  6. I can't say that I've invested a moment, or a dime, in Tiger Woods so I can't claim to be shocked. The only thing I'm getting out of this is everyone riffing on night time TV and a certain blog I know...

    wv goies
    I'm going to goies now...

  7. Sorry Paula. I spent a good portion of time in PR and damage control, so I'm always interested in how professionals make things spin.

  8. I am sure we have all had 'doozies'... and when I survived mine, I realized no one helped me, no one put a spin on it for me. Peasant public (good one, Banjo52) is a much safer place, isn't it?

    I love your phrases, your metaphors (well, some are similes? or just analogies). Graphic, either way. But then maybe I shouldn't say Graphic and Tiger in the same comment. YIKES!

    BTW do you save old boyfriend cell phone messages? I guess some girls do...

  9. Brilliant again, Karin.

    We're all missing the point about who's sending cocktail waitresses Tiger's way. Here's what you need to know: Nicklaus 18 majors, Woods 14 majors. Isn't it obvious that Jack Nicklaus is behind all this? (How does one qualify to be a "cocktail waitress," and is it a life-long title like PhD or MD?)

    Banjo (my new best friend): I don't think they expect us to believe the shit, but it's part of the rules, like making sure you have both feet in bounds when catching an NFL pass.

    Farmgirl: It may be way more than diamonds she's getting. I heard a report that in exchange for staying in the marriage, she's getting a bank account that only she can access and her $20M pre-nup that takes effect after 10 years is being raised in dollars and reduced in required time. Now that's love. Pass the mashed potatoes... darling.

    This whole question of keeping it in your pants is an interesting one indeed. A friend of mine says that the test of a good relationship is whether you have no problem with her finding your cell phone.

    WV: ogranddr - I guess that would be an appellation for a PhD or an MD - or perhaps a urologist or OBGYN.

  10. Oh no KB, it's laugh out loud's because I'm really pissed with the Republican party spin and can't spare any invective...whaaaaa did you say? You were in PR? Oooooh, my mind is racing! Any titbits you can serve up???

  11. LOL you made my day!

  12. I turned sixty and three women hit on me. Interesting that it hadn't happened before. One was a life drawing model and I saw all her stuff before any relationship formed. None did. I ran. I haven't let my family down, but there have been times I desparately wanted to. However, some pre-marital doozies happened and I'm of the belief that what goes around comes around. It eventually did and it hurt. Bad. So, there shall be no cocktail waitresses for me.

  13. Did I neglect to say, Banjo's on my knee? I'm hoping he & Earl and FG and Paula will agree to join an informal Greek chorus and keep things honest around here.

    Brenda (and I really liked your post today), no, I save nothing. Which is a real pity when it comes to dishes and boots.

    Pierre, I missed you, and I'm not even a cocktail waitress.

    And Virg, the soapbox has your name on it. Always.

    Prairie, I would covet your life, but I'm not a good enough rider. So instead, I visit and dream.

  14. Diamonds, piles of money? Damage done.

  15. This comment has been removed by the author.

  16. His PR people have their work cut out for them. All the good lines like, 'I never had sexual relations with that woman', have been taken.

    That's why PR people earn the big bucks. It's hard work being an apologist for creeps and weasels.

  17. Can I verify some "facts", here?
    So, if Tiger took a few shots, as is seemingly alleged, then if it's reported or suspected, what's her name (God, I'm a chauvinist) automatically gets busted for assault, right?

  18. Life is full of hazards, traps, holes, and penalty strokes.

  19. If Tiger didn't want all this public scrutiny, then he shouldn't have run for president.

  20. Or married at all. I don't think the sports world, or anyone else besides your mother, cares how many girlfriends you have when you're single.


  21. Really? Don't they get paid enough? That is not as creative as it can get. Surely.

  22. Gah! What a hellcat of a woman...

  23. I guess we know where his dragon was hidden.

    {Sorry ~ it's late ~ best I can do. More importantly, though, as Banjo says ~ so many gems, KB!! Night night.}

  24. I feel bad for the waitresses. Probably saw Tiger as a ride out of Palookaville.

  25. As Banjo said, I haven't much given a flying hoot about this whole Tiger story, but I loved this post. Wish I had discovered your blog before the whole John Edwards scandal.

  26. My tire totally blew -- bam! -- on the way home from the stables and some nice guys put the donut on. They said if I had been driving on the freeway, I would have made the afternoon news. Maybe it's a sign. Maybe I should be writing about sunsets and roses and whiskers on kittens and nice guys who change a tire for a total stranger.

  27. You're not a total stranger. You're Altadena Hiker!

    WV: couties (don't ask)

  28. Just want you to know I'm reading. But honestly I don't have a g.d. thing to say about this that hasn't already been said by others, and better.

  29. OK I was done with this, but I"ve got to chime in ad nauseum about the "cocktail waitresses". I should have added that unless Tiger's packing heat.....wait.... a gun, they knew EXACTLY what they were doing, and they are just as guilty as he is. It's not like they can claim they thought him some Joe Blow, oooh that's an unfortunate choice, that they had no idea was married. Maybe I'm coming across as a little prissy here but marriage is marriage in my book. You don't like it? Get a divorce and move on with your life . Otherwise do what's right buster. I really , really am done now KB. Sorry I've chimed in too much. I"ve been there and done that and didn't have money left for the damn tee shirt.

  30. One more thing that's puzzling me: Why does a waitress/mistress need a feminist attorney?

  31. Pa, I live in Palookaville...

    wv donhype

  32. Palookaville? It wasn't as though the waitress worked in the Holiday Inn in Cottageville, WV. She was at the Sofitel in LA.

  33. I know, PA had me picturing Mildred in Of Human Bondage.

  34. I think PA was more metaphorical, I'm more literal.

    wv pursie

  35. Palookaville:

    Or is it Tobacco Road:

  36. I finally am getting the TIGER joke emails...
    'Tiger drives a lot of cars. Now he has a hole in one'.

    Just had to chime in with my favorite.

  37. I still can't believe this is top story, 24/7 on all the cable "news" stations. Uh... 30,000 more troops in Afghanistan? Anyone? Anyone?


    Back to Tiger and that girl who murdered her roommate.

    Needless to say, Karin, this is brilliant as always. You are my favorite commentator on the world at large.

  38. Laurie, I also like the way NPR weekend talked about every aspect of the Tiger case under the auspices of saying how terrible it is that the rest of the news outlets talked about each of these aspects. "I didn't care about it, did you Scott?" "No, I didn't care about that and I didn't care about this..."

  39. Mr Earl likes to shimmy.

    wv presesse

    We have a secret presesse for creating our award winning, hand-crafted stuff.