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The Friday Morning Listen: Squeeze – East Side Story

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Wow, the cynicism is flying. He's no role model. He's no hero. Tiger's human after all. The mighty has fallen. It's because he's black. He's not really black. He's just in it for the money. Why are they living in a mere gated community when they've got all that money? Where'd the voice mails come from? This is all so boring. That's what he gets for palling around with Charles Barkley and Michael Jordan. Who gives a crap? C'mon, how does this effect society? Oh, poor Elin. Screw her, she'll get her money.

I'm sorry but the reactions have been only slightly less nauseating than the actual issue itself. Tiger's fallible human side has shown up and we treat him (and pretty much everybody else involved) like a piece of meat. Hungry? Yeah, go ahead and dig in. He's just a celeb, after all. Have you seen those photos on TMZ? Yeah? Cool.

There are a few things about this that really bug me, first and foremost being the kids. I really feel sorry for them, as they don't deserve this. Neither does Elin. I don't know anything about her but nobody deserves this.

The second issue relates to our society and the current lack of role models. I don't mean to infer that Tiger is or isn't a role model. That question is too complex to deal with in a handful of paragraphs. No, what I mean is that it's just disturbing to see how willing we are to actively participate in the public destruction of an individual. It's almost like we're afraid to think the best of somebody because it's easier and more comfortable (and maybe more exciting) to thing the worst. Beyond that, we seem to take a sick kind of glee in the downfall.

I suppose that this focus on celebrity immolation is just the other, ugly side of the same coin. Gossip-oriented media loves to show pictures of bikini'd actresses on vacation. They document the sad reality of breakups with equal zeal. (And we buy the magazines).

The other thing that disturbs me about all of this is that I've been there. In another lifetime, I was in a loveless relationship. It ended with the discovery of infidelity (actually, make that plural) that shook me hard. The awful emotional soup I had to deal with was sickening. I'm not fond of hating somebody…but I did. At the time, understanding why she did it was less important than the need to ride out the wave of hate — to let that last bit of love I still had for her die. I felt like I would lose my mind. I'm so glad children were not involved.

So yes, I do feel like Tiger has let me down. I have memories of sitting there with my dad, watching those incredible triumphs on the golf course. That's all shot to hell now, but that's pretty much irrelevant compared to what he's done to his wife and those kids. If we could just look in the mirror and see how unhealthy our reactions are to this, then maybe something good can come of it.

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About Mark Saleski

  • http://everythingisamess.wordpress.com Tom Johnson

    Elin. I don’t know anything about her

    I know one thing about her: she’s WAY more beautiful than any of the three women he’s accused of cheating on her with. Blech to the power of 3.

  • Don

    “I have memories of sitting there with my dad, watching those incredible triumphs on the golf course. That’s all shot to hell now” Why does his “transgressions” diminish his sports achievements? Do you think less of John Daly too? What about Kobe Bryant & Michael Jordan. Are their achievements lessened by their “transgressions”? What about Wayne Gretzky, is his wife’s involvement in a gambling scandal cause to think less of this achievements?
    I think this is part of the problem. This pedestal that society puts athletes, and all celebrities to a degree, on. The better they do the more “perfect” they become in society’s mind. That creates 2 problems; one is that they are being set to an impossible goal. If they fail at something or you learn everything about them you will find something you don’t like which will in turn diminish their stature in your eyes.
    The second is that it creates a bigger gap between their perceived “perfection” and the average guy. People will make those comparisons between their lives and the celebrity’s. So when the Celebrity fails that closes the gap somewhat, and lessens the perception of perfection. The average guy who could never compare his life to the celeb’s now has something to hang his hat on. See now I’m better than Mr. Big Shot Celeb because I’ve never done X.
    Just my $0.02…