Raybon Kan: In defence of the Tiger

By Raybon Kan

I don't want to listen to Tiger Woods' phone messages. The media in 2009 is an outrage.

Did Henry VIII have to deal with this kind of invasion? Caesar? Elvis?

In my view, Tiger Woods has behaved impeccably, and utterly without reproach, in the relevant category: Superstars Married to Someone Hot But Not Famous.

I don't see how can we hold Tiger Woods to a standard different from other rock stars.

Adulation is part of the job description. It's like marrying Superman and expecting him to walk everywhere.

Mrs Woods - a nanny (ie illegal immigrant guest worker), not even a member of the Spice Girls - knew, pre-marriage, that Tiger was worshipped globally. To this life-lottery, Powerball-windfall of a union, she brought zero fame, and only three sexual-fantasy points, she being (1) Swedish (2) Nanny (3) Model.

Yet, are we to believe that for this meagre investment - which would only diminish over time, especially with Florida sun damage - she expected 100 per cent of the worldwide rights to Tiger's entire body, even in countries she wasn't in at the time.

She expected rights in Melbourne? New York? Las Vegas?!? Surely, the most she could expect were the Swedish rights to Tiger, in perpetuity, and events where they were both on the premises and arrived on the same flight. (It wouldn't surprise me if these were the exact words of their wedding vows.)

Who did she think she was? Jennifer Aniston? Sarah Jessica Parker?

Good grief, we're talking about Tiger Woods here. Tiger is in his own category, like Elvis.

Would we be surprised, or judgmental, that Elvis cheated on Priscilla? No. People had class in those days, even the media. People knew to turn a blind eye. Even Priscilla looked away. She didn't act all trashy, chasing his car out of Graceland, smashing the windows with blue suede shoes.

Mrs Woods, on the other hand, used the golf champion's signature club to attack the sponsor's luxury vehicle, after scratching his face, no doubt with sponsored nail polish (he's worth it). Has there ever been domestic violence with this much product placement?

Life for Tiger is completely unfair: You can be the best-looking billionaire on the planet, a global monarch. Here are all the women who want to have sex with you right now, this instant, as soon as they wrap from their underwear shoot, but don't touch them. What sort of deal with the devil is this? Let's be honest, the puritanical media reaction is pure envy. We would love a deal with the devil, but we can't even get an appointment.

It's so easy to say, don't cheat on your wife. Of course Tiger knew he was married. But have you never forgotten something you knew? Everyone knows not to lift their head on contact with the golfball, but they all seem to forget when there's a club in their hand. So it is with groupies when you're famous and married.

Jesper Parnevik, shame on you. How dare you say you regret introducing Elin to Tiger? The only reason we care what you think is because you knew Tiger. (I suspect he's deleted your number now.) And thanks to that introduction, eight years ago - several lifetimes in celebrity years - Mrs Woods is set for life.

And since when did the Swedish people get so morally uptight? Not to mention turbulent, and fingernail-attacky, like Latin Americans at an election? Good grief, the French President met his previous wife when he was celebrant at her wedding. Let's get with the times.

And credit where credit is due. What about all the women Tiger hasn't had sex with? Do we have any idea what it's like to be Tiger Woods? Imagine being in a room where 100 people all try to hit you at the same time, with 100 tennis balls. A few would hit, right? Well, if you're Tiger Woods, it's not tennis balls being thrown your way: it's women.

Beautiful, sexually aggressive, competitive women. Sure, he's had a few affairs. But as a percentage of all the beautiful women who have offered to sleep with him, I'd guess his uptake is somewhere between celibate, homosexual or dead.

I bet the Dalai Lama doesn't have as clean a record as Tiger. Anyone who wears bed sheets constantly is obviously sending out the glad eye. Maybe we should call him the Glad Eye Lama.

Let's look further at what else Tiger didn't do. Faced at 2.30am with anger and violence, and indeed shame - his mother was right there - he didn't contribute violence. A lover, not a fighter, he drove away. Indeed, in a hybrid, for the planet.

As Michael Jackson implored us to do, Tiger beat it.

Like Gandhi, he chose the path of non-violence.

If only, like Mandela, he'd chosen a long walk to freedom instead.

- Herald on Sunday

© Copyright 2014, APN New Zealand Limited

Assembled by: (static) on red akl_n3 at 27 Jul 2014 00:47:16 Processing Time: 645ms