It is entirely possible that Tiger Woods, aka the world's most famous athlete who also appears to be the most boring and bland and Jesus dude show a hint of spark and humor and life, would you please? It's entirely possible Tiger is far more messed up and clinically depressed than his juvenile, low-grade adoration of hookers, porn stars and skeevy Vegas waitresses would let anyone believe.
Let us acknowledge that possibility for a moment, as a means to justify the guy's absolutely deadly blandness, his unbearable contriteness, his refusal to show even a wisp of lightness or spark or shrugging get-over-it-edness. Maybe he's really dead inside. Maybe it's deeper and sadder than anyone knows. Fine.
But, oh my God, is this really how it's supposed to be? Is this the example we want? A dour American billionaire "hero" steps up and apologizes profusely, via careful script, to a huge array of people who have no real need for his apology, because no one really cares anyway? A speech that basically comes down to some rich guy no one really knows saying he's sorry for failing to live up to some impossible, ridiculous Mr. Nice Guy standard set by, well, himself, a hundred endorsement deals and an entirely bogus Christian moral code that doesn't really exist? Great.
But oh, how relentlessly depressing. And how utterly silly. Watching Tiger bury himself under an avalanche of sad-faced apologies and surprisingly awful clothing, I'm reminded of a similar reaction I had when I watched Andre Agassi break into tears on camera in front of a delighted Katie Couric not long ago.
Andre was talking depressedly about the rough time he had well over a decade ago when he was going bald and resenting the hell out of his ruthless father and snorting a tiny bit of meth just for the hell of it, all whilst nailing Brooke Shields every night in his $10 million Vegas mansion while still being adored by millions and having nothing at all, really, to worry about.
My thought was: Why isn't he laughing? Why isn't he at least shrugging and sighing and saying, "Hey you know what? Life is ridiculous. Life is hard. Life is a mixed blessing crapfest thrillride joyburden, Katie. Even for me. Especially for me. Isn't it all hilarious and amazing? I'm still here! Did some dumb things, dated some very dumb people, wasn't the most honest with my wife. Then I fixed it. Everybody happy? Good. Let's get in the hot tub."
Oh, I know, Tiger Woods committed adultery like 5,000 times. Shameful! Horrible! Should be strapped down and beaten with a ultrafeminist 9-iron! Bow before a scowling judgmental God for his copious unforgivable sins! Or perhaps, not so much....
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Mark Morford is the author of The Daring Spectacle, a hilarious mega-collection of his finest work for the SF Chronicle and SFGate. His columns are archived here. Also: His home page, Facebook page, or send him some nice email. Not to mention...