Monday, April 12, 2010

Why Tiger Woods Will Probably Never Change

Last Monday Tiger Woods stepped out of his regular box to take some questions about, well, everything. I wrote about it at Yahoo!, expressing my appreciation for his honesty during such a tough time. He, for the most part, answered what he should have answered, avoided what he should have avoided and let the world know that would be the last time this was going to be discussed.

This was Tiger, 2.0. Right?

This weekend showed that changing isn't going to be so easy for Woods. Was his golf game impressive? Yep, for the most part it is. He showed that even with his C- game, Tiger is one of the top two or three players in the game. He finished tied for 4th with a golf swing that looked as ready for tournament play as Charles Barkleys. He had no clue which was it was going, or how it was going to come off his face. He hit pop-ups, snap hooks, and blades. That said, he got a ton out of it.

What wasn't impressive was what Tiger did when the round was over. His interviews were still stale and short. He answered questions like a robot after he promised that wouldn't be the case. He put winning so high on the list that he couldn't take a step out of the situation and realize that maybe some softer answers would do him some good.

I had a chat with my dad today on the phone and we discussed Tiger's "changes." I remarked that him getting pissed on the golf course will probably never change, because I've tried to stop my bad behavior on the golf course for years and sometimes it's just the competitive edge coming out. Do I get as mad as I used to? Nope, not even close. Do I still get frustrated when I hit a stupid golf shot? Yes, and I always will. That part I can understand with Tiger.

What I don't get is how he can't control his remarks and thoughts when the round ends. If he could just answer some questions like a regular guy, it would make people believe in him a little more. Until then, he's just going to be that Tiger guy that did those things to his wife and is still damn good at golf.

Maybe that's all he wants, but I sure he'd give us a little more.


Vince Spence said...

With the possible exceptions of more autographs for the kiddies, I do not think Tiger will change one iota. And, probably a lot less than an iota.

I do think he wants to repair his marriage, but that is only a guess. He has no desire to play more tournaments to please sponsors, giving advance notice for the tourneys he does play and he definitely will not suffer foolish questions from foolish knuckleheads. Nor, should he have to...

Have you forgotten? He is Tiger 'Effin' Woods. PTL. Or Buddha.

Patricia Hannigan said...

I know it sounds dumb... naive... whatever, but I can't help but think that Tiger Woods is extraordinarily unhappy, and I can't help but feel sorry for him.

The thing is, I'm not maternal or nurturing by nature, not at all, but I can't stop thinking of him as that little 10 year old in the funny glasses... who never had any say in what he would become and who desperately loved a Father he knew was deeply flawed. I think Tiger Woods always felt very unattractive and very insecure, and very isolated. And his amazing golf talent and all his money and all the adoration couldn't make him feel happy and or normal. And it's so hard for us to imagine that but that's what I think the truth is.

I suppose I should be like everyone else and assume he's just an arrogant, uncaring, spoiled jerk.
It would be much less sad that way.

The Armchair Golfer said...

I pretty much agree with you, Shane. I do believe people are capable of changing, and that includes Tiger. I don't think he has to dismantle his competitive nature to make different remarks after the round is over, but it's obviously like swallowing a lemon whole for Tiger. Patricia might be on to something. Would anyone be surprised by an Andre Agassi-type confessional from TW later on in life about all the things he hated about his life and golf? Only I can't see him ever revealing how he really feels about everything, although it does appear to show in his actions and demeanor.

Roody said...

I think it has mostly to do with the fact that he's been put up on a pedestal all of his life. He's the best golfer of our generation, he's the most famous athlete since Michael Jordan, and he has about 500 gazillion bucks sitting in his bank account. The PGA Tour practically begs him to come to tournaments so they can prop up their ratings, he gets the largest galleries, I could go on and on.

I try to imagine myself in his shoes, and I don't know if I'd be able to resist succumbing to a level of intolerable arrogance either. I mean, how can you be so famous and so good and NOT have some level of arrogance?

See, what he should have done from day one is decide that if he wants to feel "entitled" to some extra lady-action on the side, then he should have made the conscious decision to not get married. Look at Derek Jeter. It's well known that Jeter likes to date around, but other than the occasional mild jabs from the media, he doesn't take much flack for it.

Tiger's mistake is that he didn't realize this sooner. Either that or at some point in his life he thought he was done sewing his wild oats, but really wasn't.