[Toronto Star, Canada]



De Volkskrant, The Netherlands

Tiger Woods: Fallen Star for a Public Age


"That Tiger Woods is unparalleled in what he does requires no explanation, but outside of that he has always been charming, clean and boring - a flawless canvas on which many a brand identity could be projected. Today, he isn't a brand but a person - more naked than naked."


By Nazmiye Oral



Translated By Meta Mertens


December 14, 2009


The Netherlands - De Volkskrant - Original Article (Dutch)

Rachel Uchitel, one of the thirteen women who are now thought to have had adulterous affairs with Tiger Woods, has gone public, along with a number of others.


BBC NEWS VIDEO: Golf correspondent Iain Carter says it's hard to predict when Tiger Woods will return to the game, Aug. 15, 00:06:03RealVideo

Intimacy - that's what we really want. To be connected without further obligation. Identification without consequences. We need the herd without necessarily having to be a part of it. Many share their daily lives on Facebook or Twitter. It's laughable to read a Facebook message from someone who says: "Shut off your phone and laptop. The sun is shining. Life is great!" Especially when you can see that every hour they add a new message. Of course it's in English even if the sender is Dutch so that the message will have global reach.




Intimacy Ö Our lives are increasingly a public affair. If you arenít seen, heard or read, you don't exist in the eyes of those that matter: the rest of humanity. We act better than we are. Tougher, more adventurous, more exciting - so we can convince ourselves that we're doing well, that our lives are going somewhere and that we can justify our existence. And one must admit, when you read those messages about yourself with photos of smiling faces - and the responses to them - you have before you a complete modern human being standing with an opinion, a career, emotions, and above all, lots of friends.


The reason for this type of openness is only partly based the masturbatory reassurance that modern humans need to avert feeling lonely and convince themselves that they matter. The public sharing of feelings and lives is something we all crave - the need to see how life unfolds. How do others live it? How do they fall down and get back up? How do they manage? How do they keep up the faith and keep on going?




Even more than the thrill of gossip, this is why the downfall of an idol or celebrity fascinates us so. With all of its gory detail, in all of its nakedness and intimacy, all is revealed. But gloating at someone else's downfall is extremely perishable. How they handle the blow and emerge from battle is the real deal. In fact, the final word on the success or purification of a fallen star is in our hands.



It probably hasnít escaped your attention that the life of Tiger Woods, the once pristine, highest-paid golfer in the world, has been completely trashed in a period of two weeks.



All the juicy details are on hand: the adultery, the indiscreet money-grubbing mistresses, a humiliated and angry wife, voicemail messages, text messages, nude photos, a sex tape, lucrative advertisement deals being withdrawn, a cancelled tournament, etc. Woods, a blazian half African-American, half-Asian, was rather colorless before the leaking of his escapades. That he is unparalleled in what he does requires no explanation, but outside of that he was always charming, clean and boring - a flawless canvas on which many a brand identity could be projected.




Today, Tiger Woods isn't a brand but a person - more naked than naked. He stands to lose lucrative deals, he's the laughingstock of the sporting world, is in Sweden with his Swedish wife spending his millions and remaining quiet, only to return in a number of years, i.e.: to be purified.


The purification must take place publicly. There is a solid road map for this: 1. You hold a press conference or you go to a popular talk show host and confess your guilt - preferably emotionally but at a minimum, sincerely. 2. You call a spade a spade: I'm an alcoholic/sex addict/depressed/suicidal/have been unhappy for years, etc. 3. You act decisively and make clear how you plan to deal with addiction/undesirable behavior/failure to address the problem earlier - by means of a voluntary admission into a clinic, rehab program, volunteer work. 4. Very often, it's wise to offer your apologies to those you have hurt. 5. You keep your head down but make ensure that once in a while, photographs of you and your partner surface that display affection, so that the public gets a sense of healing. 6. After an appropriate time, you write a book about what happened to you. ††





If he wants to exist in the public eye, Woods cannot escape these rules. The public only forgives when you dig deep down and reveal your innermost self. Yet it seems that this affair may be resolved differently. There has been no press conference. Woods is nowhere to be seen and communicates only via messages on his Web site - and only after mistress number thirteen called it an affair. He also asks repeatedly for everyone to please respect the privacy of he and his family. But we're hungry - for the real life. So unfortunately: Fat Chance.



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Posted by WORLDMEETS.US, Dec. 17, 4:29pm


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