It's A Liger - It's Like A Liar And Tiger Mixed...Bred For Its Magic Skills
Tiger Woods is King of the World.
Any way you slice it, he has come, he has seen, and he has conquered. First, it was the amateur golf world, then college, and finally the PGA. He has more Majors wins than any other current golfer, was the youngest to win a Grand Slam, the youngest to notch his 50th tournament win, and has been named PGA Player of the Year a record ten times. He's the only athlete ever to be named Sportsman of the Year by Sports Illustrated more than once, has held the number one spot in the PGA rankings for more weeks than any golfer in history, and has won the most prize money of any golfer on tour. He has been credited with singlehandedly popularizing golf with a mass audience. Even when he is not in the hunt for the win, the question of "Where is Tiger in the standings?" is always asked and answered, and he is always featured in television coverage, no matter how well he is playing on any particular day.
He was able to parlay his athletic success into a very lucrative endorsement career. He has been called the Most Marketable Athlete in the World, snagging pitch deals with Nike, Gatorade, General Motors, American Express, General Mills, and Titleist. He is the first professional athlete to earn a billion dollars in his career. For every piece of golf apparel that Nike sells, Tiger gets a cut.
Not content to conquer the sports and financial world, Eldrick (as his parents named him) Woods set his sights on a new territory and has set all his efforts toward dominating it:
How else can you explain the whirlwind that Tiger has found himself in? Any clown with a wandering eye can get photographed by paparazzi coming out of another woman's apartment at 3 AM (A-Rod and Jon Gosselin already have that angle covered) or be videotaped making out with a random drunk co-ed (Kevin Fedderline has that locked up) or have a mistress come forward and wrote a book, exposing the affair (Steve Garvey). That territory has been covered so many times that nobody would even notice.
It's not enough to merely have the National Enquirer tattle on you (Jesse Jackson and John Edwards), a truly great marketer has to stand on the rooftop and shout out "Look at me! I am a philanderer!" And I can't think of a better way to shout than having your wife chase you out of the house, wielding a golf club, crashing your car, and then having her beat you unconscious while the neighbors watch.
Tiger has also brought some of that media-control savvy to the table by being incremental rather than revealing all his dirty laundry and moving on. If all the Tiger news came out at once, we'd digest it, lose interest, and drop this for the next scandal of the week. Where would that leave Tiger? Right where he was before, which is not where he wants to be. By having the news leak out slowly and escalating the scandal-worthiness of each tidbit, he is positioning himself as the King of Reality. First, his mistress was a higher-class socialite, who is used to the celebrity lifestyle and rubbing shoulders with the rich and famous. Hardly accessible to the common man,
Then we learned about Jamiee, who is best known for her brief stint as neanderthal Shawn's girlfriend on the (what else?) reality show "Tool Academy." He even (brilliantly) provided us with voice mails he left on her phone, instructing her to change her greeting message, lest his wife find out. Your ordinary, run-of-the-mill nimrod adulterer would not have taken the time to make sure all the bases were covered. You can imagine Tiger in his War Room, planning this. "String of mistresses lined up. Check. Big reveal. Check. Steadily lower class of tramps to be revealed. Check. Voice mail for lover to leak to TMZ. Check."
Then, just when I thought Tiger had really outdone himself and his situation had reached maximum tawdriness, the piece de resistance is revealed. Tiger's tenth-known fling was with a porn star. I could not help but jump to my feet, clapping and shouting "Bravo, Tiger! Bravo!" You are truly the King of Reality television. The only way to make this situation any worse (better?) would be if one of the tramps Tiger was canoodling with has a sex tape of the two of them. That would just send it over the edge and into the trailer park.
Now that Tiger is the King of Reality TV, the next steps are all academic and he can go on auto-pilot. Press conference to admit the affairs, lay low for a few weeks, see sponsors drop you, lay low for a few more weeks, interview on 60 Minutes, then start the Mea Culpa Forgiveness/Redemption tour of television shows, culminating with appearing on Saturday Night Live and doing a skit that pokes fun at yourself. By doing so he will avoid having to go the Vanilla Ice route and can skip past the usually-required appearing on The Surreal Life and getting a VH-1 Tiger of Love gig.