Taking a Swing at the Truth

Author: MaryFran Bontempo
Published: February 23, 2010 at 2:00 am

J0407554 I watched Tiger Woods’ mea culpa the other day, impressed by nothing, really.  The golfer’s thirteen minute speech contained multitudes of apologies, to his wife, mother, fans and anyone else his many indiscretions may have offended.

And he offended multitudes, no doubt about it.  I’m no sports fan, but I always admired Woods, for his focus, skill and achievements.  I bought the package of goods Woods was selling, like so many others did, and his spectacular fall from grace underscored the fact that no one is exempt from the rules by which we are all held accountable.

 While I found Woods’ speech pretty standard fare as far as apologies go, one statement did strike me.  (No pun intended.)  Woods took particular pains to exonerate wife, Elin, from rumors that his wife went after him with a golf club on Thanksgiving night when Woods’ world fell apart and he crashed his SUV outside of his Florida home. 

Tiger notes that people have “speculated that Elin somehow hurt or attacked” him.  He emphasizes that his wife “never hit me that night or any other night”, and that “Elin deserves praise, not blame.”

Blame?  Blame?  Frankly, Tiger, blame wasn’t the first word that came to my mind when word surfaced that Elin took to the window of your car, or even your famous head, with a golf club.  The first thing that I, like so many other women thought (even before the facts were known) was, “That jerk cheated on her and she went after him with a club.  Good for her.”

Now I’ll admit that endorsing violence, even while making light of a situation, or perhaps especially because it is a serious situation, isn’t good form.  And I don’t endorse violence, in any form, ever.  But haven’t you ever succumbed to the cartoon fantasy of taking a frying pan to the back of some idiot’s head after a particularly egregious slip?  The phrase “knock some sense into his head” had to come from somewhere, didn’t it?

If the end result of such an action would be the requisite cartoon follow up of a string of stars circling the offender’s cranium while canaries chirped in the background, I’d be all for a good smack upside the noggin'.  And at this moment, I can’t think of anyone more deserving of such a smack than Tiger Woods—he who had it all and threw it all away.

But this isn’t a cartoon and there are no canaries chirping in the background.  While someone took a golf club to something that Thanksgiving night, it was only Tiger himself, beating the stuffing out of his family, life and career.  He was right about one thing, though, Elin deserves praise, if for no reason other than she did restrain herself from grabbing that club and swinging away.

Continued on the next page

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Article Author: MaryFran Bontempo

Mary Fran Bontempo relies on writing to help her navigate a thirty-one plus year "career" as a wife, mother, author, teacher, former youth director, newspaper columnist, business writer, taxi driver, waitress, nurse, chief cook and bottle washer. …

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