What should Tiger Woods do?
John Feinstein wrote Monday that Tiger, like most big businessmen, likes control. He’s carefully controlled his image and the media’s access to him, and now, by running down a fire hydrant and a tree, he’s lost control over the conversation about him.
Feinstein said Woods is probably being poorly advised. Just as likely, I’d say, that he’s ignoring advice. Hoping he can somehow hunker down, swear privately at the damned media (which, come on, is the conduit to the fans who give him his living) and feel like a victim. People with power love to blame the media for their own mistakes.
I know nothing of what happened, of course. Could be Woods was in a fight with his wife, over an affair or over salad, doesn’t matter, and he got royally pissed off and stormed out to his mini-tank and hit the gas. And the hydrant. And the tree. I’ve been that mad, done things that stupid, in fights with several wives (consecutive, not concurrent). Maybe his wife smashed the windows with a nice follow-through before he drove off, maybe after. Doesn’t matter.
If something like that happened, I’d advise Woods to say, “My wife and I got in a fight. Couples do. I did something incredibly stupid, and dangerous. For that, I’m sorry.” End of story. No more questions.
Feinstein offers this advice:
To speculate on what occurred is unfair. But only Woods can stop the speculation. Something got him into the car in a state so frazzled he literally couldn’t drive safely a few yards from his own driveway. He doesn’t need to go into a lot of detail, but it is best for Woods to admit that something happened because clearly something did. Woods should read this statement at a news conference and then answer questions. If anyone asks about the tabloid reports, he should smile and say, “Come on, guys, I told you what happened that caused me to leave the house; that should be enough. Can we please move on?”
What’s your crisis-management advice?
– Bruce Benidt
(Picture from Getty Images)