Tiger Woods had sex with lots of women who were not his wife then went to rehab to save his image/marriage/career. The announcement of his return to golf has been imminent and it was announced today that he has chosen the Masters as his first tournament. The Masters is part of the threshold of Spring for me. Held in Augusta, Georgia, it is the snobbiest, most blue-blooded event outside of the Kentucky Derby. I love to look at the green grass and think about the Old South.
Tiger won his first major tournament at Augusta. The following year an old, irrelevant golfer asked the media to make sure that Tiger "doesn't ask for fried chicken or collard greens, or whatever the hell it is they eat" to be served at the Masters official dinner. Yeah, I love thinking about the Old South and whitey.
Tiger can't lose this weekend and this is why I love sports. He has already taken the most traditional event in American sports and conquered it. By "traditional" I meankeepers of the status quo, white propertied men who will never surrender their power willingly. It is happening in small increments and when the World War Two generation passes I believe it will breathe its last dying gasp, and the baby boomers will take over. But Tiger has already won. He can play the tournament and lose, but he will have controlled the spotlight of the 24-hour news cycle for five days, from Thursday until Monday. If he wins, it will be a comeback along the lines of Muhammad Ali knocking out Frazier his first time in the ring after Vietnam, or Jordan stepping out of a minor-league ballclub's bus and into the Bulls' gym to win a title. Woods doesn't have to win the Masters, but he's already added to his mystique. Every other golfer on the course will be asked and be aware of Woods' presence on the course. If he does win, it will be a moment in sports when a chapter is added to a legend, and I will be thinking of the Old South when he puts on the green jacket.