Monday, December 14, 2009


I Love Lucy

Whenever Lucille Ball got into difficulty, her husband, Desi Arnez would say to her: “Lucy, you got a lot of ‘splainin’ to do!”

Is there a chance that Tiger Woods might be in the same boat? There are several “interested parties” out there looking for answers.

One of my friends is married to a golfer/fanatic. She addressed the issue this way: “Do you really think I am going to buy several golf shirts adorned with the Nike “Swoosh”? Or perhaps a hat with the neat little TW logo?” I don’t think so.

Gillette announced on the weekend that it was rearranging its advertising program which involves Tiger and a few other athletes. It is almost certain that other advertisers will reconsider their commitment to Tiger. Rest assured there are clauses in those contracts that will allow the companies to bow out gracefully.

There are professionals who are paid to manipulate situations so that “offending parties” may come out of difficulties smelling like a rose. They are called “spin doctors” in some quarters. Initially, following the car accident, Tiger was advised to hide. Then he was advised to plead mercy, and request that his privacy be respected. Are you kidding? In America? Hello! This is the birthplace of the National Enquirer.

The next step was to admit certain “transgressions”. That left the door open for all kinds of speculation. It was about at that time when certain misdeeds with “hostesses” began to surface, and surface, and surface. According to the gossip columns, Tiger has been busy. At last count, number thirteen had surfaced.

This whole messy situation will cost Tiger a bundle. Tiffany’s does not stock a bauble big enough to get out of this one. Other athletes over the years have managed to salvage their relationships with a nice little bit of jewellery. Sorry, Tiger. Not this time.

Unfortunately for Woods, he has worked hard to maintain a squeaky clean image, and has done all of the right things to maintain that image. He has donated time and money to wonderful causes. He has taken the image of golf to its greatest heights ever.

He has always had his detractors. On the course, he has attempted to maintain the cool image, Stoic, intense, automatic. Obviously, it has been successful. Every once in a while, he has shown emotion, with his arm pumps after sinking successful putts.

He has now indicated that he will not play for a while. That is not good for the game, the sponsors, the fans. Every tournament that he skips has significantly decreased revenue. In many instances, he is the draw to put the bums in the bleachers.

And now, the game. How will it affect the weekend players and fans who spend the big dough to watch him play? Will they resort to the now common boorish behaviour of the modern day tennis fan? There was a time when the umpire in a tennis match could ask for silence, and get it. No longer.

Woods had to figure that all this hoopla would be inevitable. In this day of Twitter, cell phones, email, texting, Blackberries, and the like that he would be exposed sooner or later. Ask Prince Charles.

Imagine Tiger’s reaction when they begin to shout as he takes his backswing. Rest assured, they will do it. They will be turfed from the tournament, but there will be others to take their places. It will not be easy for Tiger, no matter how they try to spin the situation.

I do not wish to speculate about his marital situation. That’s not my domain; however, unless he has a very tight pre-nuptial agreement in place, a divorce will be somewhat costly. Michael Jordan was rumoured to have forked out between one and two hundred million dollars. That might even be chump change in Tiger’s situation.

All of this will unfold in the next several weeks. Needless to say, there likely won’t be as many presents under the tree this year at the Woods household.

James Hurst

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