He’s back. Thank goodness as maybe now all the stories will pertain to how he handles a golf club, and not some woman he met in a nightclub. I for one sure hope so.
When he recently announced he would return to competitive golf at the Masters tournament, Eldrick Woods (Sorry, I can’t call a 34-year-old man Tiger) set the stage for what will be the most anticipated comeback in the history of golf, and perhaps second only to the first National Basketball Association comeback of Michael Jordan.
For four months now, we have speculated about what happened in his personal life and, more importantly, what caused the man with the million-dollar smile and the billion-dollar swing to fall from grace last Thanksgiving.
The alleged encounters with other women have caused many of his endorsement deals to disappear into thin air. This story has everything one would need for a book, movie, and a two-part interview on the Oprah Winfrey Show. Well, not really, as it is missing something that I hope we will soon get to see and something, hopefully, that Woods is thinking about every day of his life.
I am talking about what he really needs to do here. Quitting the game of golf and riding off into the sunset with his wife and children. That’s right, I said quit. No more major championships, no more mega endorsement deals, and certainly no more making excuses to the public through a media representative that is not nearly worth the thousands of dollars you are paying him. Throw away your golf clubs, take a permanent vacation, and if need be, give back any monies your sponsors might want as well for breaking the deals.
Mr. Woods, you can start the quest to regain the joy you had as a golfer in college when you played for nothing, and sat down for a pizza and a soda afterwards with your friends, long before you were the high-paid, marketing machine for Nike.
Maybe you can get up in the morning and do something much more important than that quest for a fifth green jacket at the Masters, like fixing your children their breakfast and helping them get dressed for the day.
Then there is your wife and the mother of your children. Have you told her today how much you love her, how much you appreciate her, and how you recognize all the sacrifices she made for you to pursue your career? Tell her daily.
If you have been unfaithful as others allege, then ask her for forgiveness. Once you become Eldrick Woods the full-time father and husband, you will have a far greater sense in life than any major championship in golf can provide you.
Losing something close
Easy for me to tell you how to live, you say, right?
Not really as I envy you and would give anything to have what you have. Not the money and the fame that comes from being a superstar athlete, but the warmth and closeness that comes from a family being together, loving each other, laughing and crying together as you walk with one another down this ever-changing road we call life. You see, sir, I once lost a mother and a brother as well as a child. I cannot get them back and it haunts me every time I try to forget it. They were all too young to be leaving this world and there isn’t a day that goes by that I do not wish I could talk to them one more time, hold them and tell them I loved them. You still have all that and then some, in my opinion, so do not let some reporter or photographer deny you the simple pleasures in your life.
Notes: Eldrick Woods’ much anticipated return to golf can be seen this weekend as he competes in the Masters in Augusta, Ga. The tournament will televised by CBS and can be seen locally on WISH-TV.
Danny Bridges, who is no one to judge Eldrick Woods or any other person, can be reached at (317) 578-1780 or Bridgeshd@aol.com.