A Current Events Commentary Blog from a Public Relations/Marketing Perspective.
Donald Tremblay, a PR/Marketing specialist who has been “making it rain” for over a decade reviews today’s news, sports, entertainment, etc . . .

Friday, December 4, 2009

Par For The Course

Like many others I am tired of hearing the name Tiger Woods. But since this is a blog about current events from a public relations/marketing perspective, I would be remiss if I didn’t devote one entry to Woods and his predicament.

Tiger Woods is not the first and he will not be the last athlete exposed for infidelity. Professional athletes are surrounded constantly by adoring females who will gladly surrender themselves in exchange for gifts or for notoriety. What is surprising is that any athlete’s wife is shocked when she discovers he has mistresses. Knowing the lifestyle athletes live, how can any woman be na├»ve enough to believe otherwise? As Public Relations Director for the boxing promoter Main Events, I experienced more than a few situations where groupies would attend press conferences or visit gyms to make it known that they were ready, willing, and able to show the fighter a fun evening. Often this was done through a fighter’s entourage. I am not excusing the behavior of athletes. I am merely explaining the reality of their life, especially on the road. The question I am most asked by people is, “Don’t these guys learn?” No, they don’t. And we in society share much of the blame for this.

Professional athletes are usually coddled since childhood. Mistakes and transgressions that would bring consequences for you and I, are often ignored when they involve a young man who can hit a baseball 450 ft or slam-dunk a basketball at the age of 14. These young men learn at a very early age that life is different for them. They are raised with a sense of entitlement and a belief that they cannot be harmed. “Whatever happens will be excused as long as I perform on the court or on the diamond. “ And that arrogance explodes when they reach the professional ranks.

I can’t help but believe that this arrogance is in large measure responsible for the mess that Tiger Woods finds himself in. Instead of coming clean when the rumors began and acknowledging that he was having marital problems, he felt he could ignore the problem. Was it because he thought interest in his personal life would fade over time if unaddressed? Or was it because he believes that he is beyond reproach from the masses? I have never met Tiger Woods, but I do know publicists and media who have dealt with him. Across the board they all had unflattering things to say about him. Nasty and arrogant are two of the printable words they used to describe him. Part of this media feeding frenzy may be “payback” for his hubris.

A little humility goes a long way in this world. People love “mea culpas” and if Tiger had stepped forward earlier he would have received more mercy and respect from the public and the media. As I mentioned in my sports blog the other day, I am reminded of Ralph Kramden’s warning: “Be kind to the people you meet on the way up, because you are going to meet the same people on the way down” . . .

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