After the fact of the “Tiger Woods Apologia” on Friday, I feel no need to change anything I said on that subject last Thursday evening. However, there was one aftermath of his staged appearance that does need a comment.
To the shock and horror of everyone at ESPN, the Dalai Lama had never heard of Tiger Woods until Friday when someone informed the Dalai Lama of Woods’ statements that he had strayed from the Buddhist precepts his mother had taught him. Tiger Woods also said that he recognized that returning to those precepts would help him deal with his infidelities and keep him on a more righteous path in the future. Those remarks, from a person the Dalai Lama had never heard of, somehow generated the need for the Dalai Lama to issue a statement.
I do not know how to speak Tibetan, but there must be a phrase in that language that carries the same sense that “stuff a sock in it” does in English. Come now… A religious leader – - who also doubles as a political head of state for an independent state that does not exist – - need not glom onto anything said by a philandering golfer as yet another way for said religious leader to get in the news.
Lest anyone think that is an expression of religious intolerance, it is not. I would apply the same standard to leaders of every religion in the world from the Pope to the Archbishop of Canterbury to every Imam in the Muslim world should any of them choose to weigh in on this non-issue. In addition, the same goes for Brit Hume of FOX News and his suggestion to Tiger Woods on Woods’ choice of religious beliefs. Enough already; there is no theological content here; move on.
Some folks thought my comment on Tiger Woods were overly blunt last week. Admittedly, I did not intend to make them sound like a diplomatic statement coming from the State Department. However, what I said pales in comparison with what Dan Jenkins said in Golf Digest last weekend. Jenkins had ignored this whole issue for three months but penned his thoughts after the apologia last week and took a shot at the people who have fawned over Tiger Woods all these years saying:
“For all of the Tiger idolaters out there, it must have been like finding out that ice cream sundaes give you gonorrhea.”
Jenkins’ column deserves to be read in its entirety. I will not pretend to be able to do it justice here in any summary fashion.
It seems as if Crystal Magnum is back for another 15 minutes of fame. In case you do not recognize that name, she had her first time in the spotlight four years ago when she accused three members of the Duke lacrosse team of raping her. Surely, you recall the swirl of events that resulted from that accusation. Last week, Crystal Magnum was charged with arson and attempted murder based on an allegation that she burned her boyfriend’s clothes in a bathtub and attacked him. Nancy Grace and her producers will probably be all over this case…
David Whitley on AOL Fanhouse had this comment about Ms. Magnum:
“Crystal Magnum, the woman who falsely accused three Duke lacrosse players of rape four years ago, is charged with attempted murder after allegedly assaulting her boyfriend and setting his clothes on fire. Rev. Jesse Jackson blames the Duke baseball team.”
[Aside: I never did see any apology from Rev Jackson for his actions and remarks in the Duke lacrosse case and a cursory Google search came up with none. Interesting…]
In my continuing quest to keep you up to date with happenings in the Winter Olympics – - without me having to spend hours upon hours in front of a TV set watching more of those events than I could stand – - I will take you on a trip round the country for comments by others:
First, Bob Molinaro of the Hampton Roads Virginian-Pilot had this to say:
“Wondering: Where do women hockey players go between Olympics, the federal witness protection program?”
Moving further south, Greg Cote of the Miami Herald had this note about the effect the NHL’s Olympic hiatus has had on the Florida Panthers:
“The reeling Panthers lost six consecutive games before the NHL went on hiatus for the Winter Olympics. Here’s how bad the Cats’ offense has been. While not playing any games the past week, the team’s goals-per-game average has risen slightly.”
Meanwhile in the great northwest, Dwight Perry accumulated several comments of this ilk in the Seattle Times:
“ABC’s Jimmy Kimmel, on the Winter Olympics: ‘Skiing, snowboarding, ice-skating, these are not sports. They’re vacation activities. I feel like I’m watching someone’s home movies.’ “
“Headline in the Vancouver (B.C.) Sun: ‘It’s Johnny Weir — the d is silent.’ “
“Todd Dewey of the Las Vegas Review-Journal, after Tuesday’s ski schedule was dashed because of too much snow: ‘ What’s next, canceling beach volleyball because of too much sand?’ “
Finally, on a different topic of only marginal interest within the sports world, here is a comment from Greg Cote that wraps it all up in 16 words:
“I think America’s Cup sailing just happened in Spain. I’m pretty sure some rich guy won.”
But don’t get me wrong, I love sports…