Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Tiger Woods and Twitter, A Strange, Confusing Tango

So, I decided something on Tuesday. After Tiger Woods spent about a hour and a half replying to random people in the Twitter-verse, sending out 22 tweets in that span, a revelation hit me. All our golf-writing lives, all we've wanted was more Tiger. We wanted more interviews, more insight, more answers, more everything; as fans get with people of fame, the thing we longed for was more. That's the reason we have things like the paparazzi and Perez Hilton and long-lenses cameras. All of this is to help the average Joe find out more about the famous ones. "What are they really like?"

Last Thanksgiving gave us all a large glimpse into the life of Tiger, and professional athletes in general. We spend a ton of time trying to figure out who these people are. During NFL and NBA games we see videos of players helping out the general public with building homes or visiting hospitals. The PGA Tour boasts yearly about how much they donate to charity. All of this is fantastic, don't get me wrong, and I'm proud that our athletes (or the committees they represent) have realized that giving back is a big part of being a big deal, and making a large amount of money. But, nobody really knows. Nobody knew Kobe Bryant was doing what he was doing behind the scenes when the story came out of Colorado. Nobody really thought Ben Roethlisberger was the type of guy to take a girl in a bathroom and do whatever the hell happened. And of COURSE nobody knew about Michael Vick and his antics.

But, after Thanksgiving, we figured out that Tiger wasn't as polished, and it made us want even more. He granted interviews, but said very little. He spoke of change but entered the stage with that same, bland costume. For nearly all of 2010, he was "Tiger Woods, the former," before trying to magically change in the span of a month.

He went on a radio show, and joined a social networking site, and wrote a piece for a fairly popular magazine, if there is even such a thing anymore.

But Tuesday showed me something. As Tiger was answering questions on Twitter, to whoever the hell it was that was sending them in all over the world, it donned on me. Tiger Woods can't give us interesting, because he isn't really that interesting.

People have said he's funny, and sure, he probably does tell dirty jokes, but so do a lot of boring people. He laughs with golfers around the world on the course, but I'm sure most of that is because the other golfer is sitting there thinking, "Tiger made a joke, I BETTER LAUGH AT IT!"

Here are some of Tiger's responses on Tuesday:

Basketball. RT: @WeberN @TigerWoods if you could play any other sport, what would it be?

More majors than the other. RT: @FMinorLP U and Roger Federer are competing to see who wins the most majors, what does the winner get?

St. Andrews. RT: @Justin_PRGuy @TigerWoods what's your favorite course and why?

Read RT: @davejemm Cant believe TW is on Twitter! The fact that you may read this Tiger fills me with excitement ! Absolutely love you man !

Steak and baked potato. RT: @Padgoi what did you eat after your foundation meeting?

Is any of that really interesting, and beyond that, can it be interesting? Can Tiger give us anything on a site that restricts answers, or this the forum great for him because he can say as little as possible? As the great Associated Press writer Doug Ferguson joked on Tuesday, Tiger's answers were short even for Twitter.

It just seems that he's, I don't know, vanilla. All our lives we thought there were so many layers to the man that is Tiger Woods, and the more and more this year has progressed, the more and more it seems we were fooling ourselves into believing he was some being that trumped a homosapien, and really, he's just a golfer, and golfers are normally pretty boring.

His favorite course is St. Andrews, but why? I don't know. He eats steak and baked potatoes after meetings. Awesome. He likes basketball. Great.

I guess the problem really lies with us. We, as golf fans and writers and bloggers, wanted so much to learn more about Woods and send it out to the public, when really, there wasn't much to send.

Oh well, I guess. That's probably for the best.


John Raser said...

Read. As a writer, that should fill you with excitement.

Heather Jones said...

Golfers are boring? I assure you my golfing gal pals are far from boring. Good thing Tiger doesn't hang with us.

Jay said...

If you're a golfer looking for a cool widget to customize your Facebook Profile picture without having to know Photoshop and spend hours doing it...check this out!

Anonymous said...

I got news for you, we are all boring. Just depends on your perspective. You all thought that Woods or any elite athletes,because you were not close with them, are superhuman, robots, freaks, little gods etc. Yes they go to the bathroom just like you do, no different. David Duval, in the early 2003, once ,laughed and shook his head when he was asked what Woods was like. His answer, he is an ordinary guy just like me and you

Patricia Hannigan said...

Awesome post. So true about the universal desire to find something magical in someone famous.

And until there's an accident or a crime or scandal that slips out, we can... and do... convince ourselves that there IS something supernatural. And that fills us with hope and wonderment. I still really miss that in Tiger and probably always will.

Eric Magidson said...

Shane: Another good blog entry. There seems to be a fact that the collective "we" love to place our "heroes/celebrities" up on a pedestal as if their lives are more interesting than ours. But, then we also can't wait to watch them fall as if to bring them down to our level so as if to make a boring story more interesting when they rise again.

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