After watching HBO’s riveting two-part documentary on Tiger Woods, I came away awestruck and shocked. I have long known the general details of his historic rise up the ranks of professional golf; how he made a boring sport dominated by old white men into a cool ass event that tons of black people couldn’t wait to watch.
I knew about his father Earl and the obsession he had in molding his only son into a global phenomenon. The enormous Nike deals, the mesmerizing success he achieved in amassing an endless array of PGA tour victories, championships, and everything else you can imagine.
I knew about his stunning fall from grace in November 2009 when a minor car accident led to a massive expose of his long-running infidelity.
What shocked me the most was the way that Woods was raised like a damn robot since infancy. At first glance, his father seemed like a super proud and doting parent — but a look deeper reveals a man who behaved more like a mad scientist who couldn’t wait to unleash his signature invention upon the world.
Tiger lived and breathed the game of golf at almost every turn during his infancy and childhood and ultimately seemed to function as an emotionless machine once he became world-famous.
There’s little wonder why his life has been a mind-bending mix of once-in-a-lifetime exceptionalism and devastatingly ill-advised choices.
I’m not sure his wealth and status are worth the price he paid for it.