Wednesday, December 02, 2009

Tiger. By the tail.

So, assuming that all of the smoke indicates that there is indeed a fireand if you've been anywhere near a TV or computer lately, you know that Us and other media outlets are now reporting on a number of non-spousal women in Tiger's recent past, aside from the one who's gotten all the play over the past weekwhat do we learn from this?

We basically learn what we learned from John Edwards. And Bill Clinton before that. And Hugh Grant before that. And...

This hunger, this lust for what we men call "strange,"* is a form of madness. It eats rationality for breakfast and spits out all of your principles by lunch. A man in Tiger's position
much like a man in John Edwards' positionhas very little to gain by catting around, and almost everything to lose. In Woods' case that "everything" includes a knockout of a wife (shown), a nice little family, an endorsement career with once-limitless upside potential, the enduring respect and adoration of his legions of fans. Even looking at this in the tackiest, most stereotypically male way possible, let's focus for a moment on that wife. Twenty-nine-year-old Elin Nordegren is widely considered one of the most beautiful womenone of the hottest women—on the planet. I personally know guys who consider her the hottest woman on the planet. Again, in the narrow terms with which so many young males rate and value women, what more could a man, any man, even a mega-celeb like Tiger Woods, want? He has the filet mignon at home, yet he puts the entirety of his charmed life on the line by making midnight runs for fast-food burgers. Why?

I'll tell you why. Because he can't help it. A
s I posed in the headline of my item about Edwards, it's "in the jeans." People will say: But come on, doesn't the man have any morals, any conscience, any consideration for his wife? For crying out loud, the woman just had his second child! How will he be able to face his kids someday? All of which begs the obvious question I ask in return: If he could control it...don't you think he'd do just that, with all that's at stake? Would he really choose to take these risks if he had a choice? Women have a hard time grasping this (NPI), even despite the fact that more and more young women nowadays are giving vent to their own libidinous inclinations. They don't understand the power of it all. And if you're a celebrity or someone in a position of power to begin with, a man who's been conditioned to expect to have his way in life, a man who can create opportunities pretty much at will (like, say, by flying women to Australia to meet you at a tournament)and, on top of that, you're a decent-looking guy, the kind of guy to whom women would likely flock anyway—there's just no containing it.

I've never been a mother, but the only comparison I can make is that I think the emotions that drive many men to stray are at the same level of potency as the emotions that drive most women to nurture and protect their newborns.

It's that strong.

==============================

And a brief, Wednesday-afternoon "vanity tax" update. Made the Dallas Morning-News today. And, as has been typical for this piece, not too many folks commented...but the ones who did sure aren't too happy with me. I gotta say, the guy's point about his big-screen TV makes sense. Still, at least a nice big HDTV does something, and it does something appreciable. That's not quite the same as talking about a pendant. Is it?

* among themselves, and almost never within earshot of women.

67 comments:

Rational Thinking said...

Steve wrote:

"Because he can't help it".

Are you kidding me? This is a supreme athlete, extraordinarily talented, but that talent was never honed without self-discipline, determination, and sheer will and persistence. And you're telling me he can't control his lust?

You seem to be arguing that, because it doesn't make sense to you that he would risk so much, therefore he can't help himself. But what if he likes the adrenaline rush of it all? Or would that be something else he couldn't help?

Free will or determinism, one more time :-)

RevRon's Rants said...

Sorry, Steve, but I don't buy the "he can't help it" notion. I think it's more of a situation where they guys feel nearly omnipotent - and appropriately entitled - to respond to the urges that we all have (but to which, most of us don't succumb).

There have been numerous times in my life when I was presented with opportunities - some apparently free of external repercussions - to avail myself of a little "strange" while in a committed relationship (including my marriage). Was I tempted? You bet, especially in the case of one drop-dead gorgeous woman when I was in my 20s and married for a few years! Conflicted? Absolutely. And in hindsight, I admit to some regret at not having seized the opportunity, while at the same time recognizing that if I had, the regret would likely be even worse. Ultimately, however, I had the choice whether to indulge in behaviors that could well have caused problems for me. These public figures have the choice, as well. They merely discounted the possibility of repercussions when they made their choices.

Martha said...

I read somewhere that the very qualities that make men attractive to women (as a species, not necessarily individually) are also the very qualities that make them more likely to stray ("stray" and for some reason "responsible pet ownership" immediately leaps to mind). High levels of testosterone make men oooh baby aggressive, competitive, capable of buying Lexuses, able to leap tall buildings to win that election and claim the tourney prize...all those things make men hot hot hot. It's the testosterone we have to thank for this.

Unfortunately, it's also the testosterone that put men on business trips (or exotic golf outtings) and then put into their brains like the electronic message crawl on the Goodyear balloons: "I think I'll have me some of that."

It's so much nicer being this side of 50. But JUST this side of 50.

Elizabeth said...

Ho ho ho (to use Roger's timely phrase), I suspect you'll get many responses to this post, Steve. :)

I would like to point out just one thing. When you say,

Because he can't help it

you can very well extend that reasoning to your recent posts where you bemoan people's need to increase their status via gathering things shiny and expensive, even if this leads to their personal destruction.

So next time you criticize those vain pursuits, just remember,

They can't help it.

It is (almost, if not entirely) as strong a biological drive as the sexual or bonding one.

Anonymous said...

If Tiger or any guy "can't help it," they should do all women a favor and just stay single. Once you are married, you have an obligation to "help it," no matter what the thing in your pants wants you to do. But "can't help it"? Don't marry. It is that simple.

Steve Salerno said...

I am saying that when people--large numbers of people, not just one or two--embrace behaviors/courses of action that are so clearly and patently self-destructive (or at least fraught with the very high potential for self-destruction), then there must be a core-level compulsion at the root of it. If Tiger Woods (or any man) can look at a woman to whom he isn't married and say, "Hmmm, you know what? I think one night with her might be worth everything else I have in life...so bring it on!", then there's something very strange and very powerful going on that is not explicable via standard conceptions of choice, free will, "responsibility," etc.

Anonymous said...

Would you agree then that women who spend a lot of money on shoes or want lots of bling also "can't help it"?

Steve Salerno said...

Anon 12:15: So you believe that the desire for stiletto heels is encoded into DNA at birth, along with the desire to eat, mate and nurture one's young?

Let's please not trivialize the discussion. I'm talking about the power of core-level needs here. I didn't expect to be rebutted with examples of people "needing" nice shoes or season tickets for their local NBA team.

Anonymous said...

Tiger has now admitted it.
http://tinyurl.com/ygczz5m

RevRon's Rants said...

"there's something very strange and very powerful going on that is not explicable via standard conceptions of choice, free will, "responsibility," etc."

Not that strange, but certainly powerful. IMO, it boils down to fantasy, fueled by a sense of entitlement and invincibility. Doesn't transcend free will and responsibility, but what effectively dissolves them is that the participants are "stuck on stupid."

Steve Salerno said...

Ron: You really think it's that simple: "stuck on stupid"? I do realize that you're using the phrase in the idiomatic sense, and not talking literally about IQ. But if you think about it... Well, let's look at two of the key players here. I don't know much about Tiger's brainpower, but I do know that Clinton and Edwards were considered intellectual heavyweights. So clearly they were not "stupid" in the classic sense. Something made them "stupid" for the purposes of their sexual behavior. And that, I would argue, is where this all-embracing "power" comes in. It is fully capable of overcoming just about every other force and form of resistance, assuming only that the man in question has the opportunity and the imagination to act on it.

Steve Salerno said...

I was struck by the very first comment currently listed under the news story submitted here by Anon 12:33 above. I quote:

"This **** happens everyday in every family!!! Tiger Woods is first a MAN, and thus his dick leads him around. The fact that he is a billionaire just gives him far more opportunities than most men. Give them a break and let his wife mop the floor with him for a while and then go back to their comfortable 'privacy'."

Rational Thinking said...

"when people--large numbers of people, not just one or two--embrace behaviors/courses of action that are so clearly and patently self-destructive (or at least fraught with the very high potential for self-destruction), then there must be a core-level compulsion at the root of it."

Steve, I hear that you believe this to be so, but I don't believe you've made the argument.

And if there's a 'core-level' compulsion at the root of it - then why aren't the vast majority of people doing this? In my experience, some people do things simply because they can. For the thrill of it. Not because they are compelled by some mysterious force to do so. It would be a very convenient mysterious force, of course :-) But I'm still not buying it.

Steve Salerno said...

RT: I agree that it's hard to build a thoroughly convincing case for this--in part because we don't know all of the details of everyone's private life. And it's true, I don't think you tell very much by looking at the marriages of the average Joe, some guy who's living a blah life and, in his own mind, probably figures he doesn't have all that much to lose anyway, so it's half-worth the gamble. (To him.) That's why I focus on people like Woods and Clinton and Edwards, who have/had everything to lose. In effect, John Edwards--by committing adultery with that videographer--was saying, "Gee, if I get caught or she gets pregnant"--and it now appears that both may have happened--"it's OK, all I lose is a shot at the U.S. presidency, which is something I've organized my entire public and political life around for the past 15, 20 years, ho-hum..." He had to have realized the risks--especially with poor Elizabeth battling cancer! And he went ahead and did it anyway. That's not just hubris and it's not just recklessness. That's a force unto itself.

SustainableFamilies said...

Steve, I agree there is a core emotion behind this, but I think you're questioning the basis of free will and I don't agree. How many parents beat their children? In fact, child abuse is a HUGE problem. So many children endure this. Does the fact that large numbers of people abuse their child in mild and disturbingly severe forms mean that they "can't help it" and shouldn't be responsible for it?

The human being is capable of some deep dark urges. Apparently, in a study in 1980 33% of men admitted to having rape fantasies. That's an awful lot of men having rape fantasies isn't it? And that's only WHO HAVE ADMITTED IT.

One has to wonder if this urge does exist in some form in the larger portion of men. Does that mean that "they can't help raping people"?

Drug addiction is a powerful urge and does render it's participants into a state where they feel they are "helpless" to overcome their urges for drugs. Does that make them less responsible for controlling their urges? Drunk people abusing children happens A LOT, just because it happens a lot, doesn't mean that parents don't have an obligation and responsibility to prevent it from happening to their children.

I understand, there are deep primal urges and as humans sometimes we fall helpless in their grasp.

That DOES NOT remove fault. That doesn't make it ok for a man to abandon his children, to hurt his wife and family by cheating, for a woman to abuse her children, for a man to rape a woman, for an adult to commit incest with a child.

Remember the saying "boys will be boys?" Yeah, they fight, they rape women, they cheat, they beat their children, and they can't help it.

Bull crap. I think having compassion for the factors that lead to hurtful behaviors is ok, and I see where you're going with that. But you've gone a step further and absolved responsability. People CAN affect their choices and decisions.

That for some people, that is a huge inner battle I do think we can have compassion for.

That because they are struggling inside we need to absolve them from protecting human beings around them from harmful urges I disagree.

If a person is filled with harmful urges they can see that. They can make decisions to protect people around them even if they can't stop the urges or they feel out of control.

A parent who is afraid they are going to be abusive or has been abusive can go to family counseling and if necessary place the child in the care of people who are safe. A man who is thinking about cheating all the time can break up with his wife.

If he's caught up in the moment, how about call your wife and say, "Hey I want to break up."


There is a point where the control is lost and usually there are CONSCIOUS decisions that lead up to that point. How did he wind up talking with a hot woman to begin with? How was the decision made to go somewhere private with a hot woman?

There are so many points at which a person can say, "I see where I'm going with this and I need to step back."

I totally believe in forgiveness. But what you're saying is beyond forgiveness, it's complete omission that a person did something really harmful and that they really truly could have chosen not to do.

Elizabeth said...

Steve, Anon's question is excellent:

Would you agree then that women who spend a lot of money on shoes or want lots of bling also "can't help it"?

Especially after your comment:

when people--large numbers of people, not just one or two--embrace behaviors/courses of action that are so clearly and patently self-destructive (or at least fraught with the very high potential for self-destruction), then there must be a core-level compulsion at the root of it

I'm surprised that you do not see the analogies.

The drive toward getting "bling," as Anon says, is hardwired in women. Getting females "bling" and other nice things is, first, a mandatory part of courtship across our species, and, second, as Londoner already rightly observed, providing proof of the male's fitness to be the woman's sexual partner and a potential father of her children. Those two are of "one piece," btw.

This is as deeply rooted in biology as the male need to impress females with his status and capacity to buy "bling," or otherwise make her select HIM from the pool of available mates.

Or, for that matter, as his need to bed as many females as he can manage. The fact that Tiger was able to stray so successfully for so long (and will likely remain married), also comes down to "bling" -- i.e., his status and money.

If he were a poor Joe Schmoe, without the means to impress available females with his "bling"-ability, we would not be watching this sordid spectacle. And had he managed to stray as a poor Joe Schmoe, chances are his wife would have thrown him out on his face long ago. She would not stick around, if it weren't for his blingability.

Other factor behind the "women can't help it" reasoning when it comes to "bling" is also rooted in our biology -- and it's the need of the human female to adorn herself in order to appear more desirable -- again something we see across the species.

Can't dismiss "bling" so lightly, Steve. It's hardwired and serious stuff, really. Can't help it. ;)

Steve Salerno said...

Eliz: Ok, but come on: Where's the self-destructive element, bling-wise, that's so clear in the behaviors I'm writing about? Sure, you could argue that by coveting and wearing bling, you're pissing away money that could be better used elsewhere (which is precisely my argument re "vanity taxes," btw). But that's still open to interpretation and, again, rests on a sense of balance and priorities where reasonable people could disagree.

Let's say you heard that there was a cult of snipers afoot who were targeting women in your city who were observed wearing jewelry. Would you wear jewelry out to dinner tonight? I think not. (Now be honest.) Because it isn't worth the risk. But these guys (Woods et al) are willing to assume a degree of risk that's comparable to that. (And indeed, many men will indulge in ribaldry that does, quite literally, put their lives at risk.) And for what? For one night with a woman who isn't even as attractive as what you've got waiting at home?

Elizabeth said...

That's not just hubris and it's not just recklessness. That's a force unto itself.

Hubris that is behind narcissism we see in these men is a force unto itself. But their lust is nothing unusual. We all lust (dare I say).

But that narcissistic hubris is what sets these guys apart in many ways, as several commenters already noted. It leads to their recklessness and makes them believe that they are above the moral laws and obligations applicable to mere mortals. So they do as they please as long as they can get away with it. Because they believe that they can and SHOULD get away with it.

When exposed, they are usually SHOCKED! -- that they got caught and that others make a big deal out of their (mis)behavior.

It's not that mysterious. Slimey, more like it.

Elizabeth said...

Attraction to bling can be deeply destructive, as you yourself pointed out so many times, Steve. It ruins individual lives, entire families, and countries (ours, in this case). And yes, it is biologically driven at its core.

Your example with shooting over-blinged females is not exactly applicable here.

If Tiger knew that journos (or armed assassins) would be monitoring his every step and text message, he too would have thought twice about "getting some" on the side.

But he was convinced, as every narcissistic male (and female) is, that he is 1. entitled, and
2. he can get away with it.

If Elin sent out "cousin" Vinny with a loaded shotgun after her hubby every step of the way, I bet Tiger too would be able to, um, keep it zipped.

SustainableFamilies said...

So you're arguing that if someone hurts another human being that if there was a risk of repercussions the perpetrator "couldn't help it"? Because obviously a healthy person would avoid repercussions?

I disagree, I think there ARE individuals who are sick, but I also think there are individuals who are self absorbed. Many many many men get away with cheating for years and years. In fact many get away with it and never get caught.

So the idea that they "know it's going to come back to haunt them" is untrue. People who decide to try cocaine don't believe it's going to be them who gets addicted or overdoses.

That's what happens to other people. The rush of doing something dangerous, or that you could get caught for, produces a high in and of itself.

And it doesn't justify hurting people, and it doesn't remove responsibility.

With your philosophy I take it that men (but I suppose not women?) should be able to cheat whenever they want and than women should just stay married to them? I've been with abusive men who do horrible things and don't think they can control themselves, should we just say "well they can't help it"?

People aren't capable of feeling strong urges and choosing to behave differently?

I did forgive the guy I was with. Every day. I cried with him. He cried with real genuine sorrow over his actions. I cried for his guilt. He would use threats of suicide to keep me feeling sorry for him.

I UNDERSTAND overwhelming confusing intense urges to do things that hurt people

BUT WE HAVE TO EXPECT PEOPLE TO MAN UP TO THOSE URGES AND DO THE RIGHT THING.

We can not say "Oh child molesters can't help it so they should just get to have a field day"

I have compassion for human being who completely and utterly fail to stop themselves from doing horrible, cruel, and painful things to other humans.

I can forgive. I can understand the forcess behind the actions were huge.

But I can not say that people have no power to stop themselves.

We do. We must fight to find that power in ourselves and we must require that other people have that power as well, with compassion for the fact that sometimes, people mess up.

Martha said...

Wow...lots to catch up with here. You're away from your computer one lousy day and the conversation runs amok!

But for the moment, what I want to know is this: Is RevRon wearing pants in his picture? I think he should be RevRon's Pants and maybe put on a shirt.

(just kidding...but it does make a girl wonder)

sassy sasha said...

he's a man doing what men do, why do you think we women are doing it too now?? what's the expression turnabout is fairplay?

Anonymous said...

While he was at it I reckon Tiger saw nothing self-destructive in it--he saw only that he could get away with it, and hyped himself up to believe he could keep getting away with it.
Same old, same old, the story of every fallen celeb, he believed his own BS.

Interestingly, this was enshrined as a virtue amongst the Spartans, reknowned and savage warriors. 'Getting away with it' was considered a greater achievement than all the usual honourable and virtuous pursuits. I believe criminal fraternities function on much the same principle.
There is a wonderful animation doing the rounds on the net of Elin chasing him down the driveway and taking swipes at the car with the golf club.
Go, girl.

LizaJane said...

Steve wrote: "If he could control it...don't you think he'd do just that, with all that's at stake? Would he really choose to take these risks if he had a choice?"

No. Because he doesn't have to. Nothing is at stake. Not really. His reputation won't be ruined. His marriage may or may not survive, but when you are itching for "strange," who cares? He'll find another, and another... No great loss. For whatever reason, he doesn't VALUE what he has over the lure of what he wants.

Really, you've answered your own question. By saying he couldn't help it, you're saying it's OK. He can "get away with it" because we say, "Oh, that's just your nature as a man. We understand."

Thing is, he CAN help it and it's NOT OK. There is nothing wrong with sleeping around, provided you haven't made a solemn oath (aka marriage) that you will not do so. If you want an open relationship, FIND an open relationship, or don't be in a relationship at all. Just have sex. There are plenty of people out there who'd be fine with that. There are always like-minded people, whatever your particular bent. It's always doable.

Our society in general, and you in particular in this post, have enabled and excused this behavior as some sort of male biological imperative. Bullsh*t.

Many, many men -- some far more attractive than Tiger Woods -- do NOT cheat on their wives (or even their girlfriends). To say those men (or women) have not, to some degree or another, felt attracted to someone else, bored (or even miserable) in their relationship, or REALLY wanted to stray (but didn't) is naive and foolish. Yet, they manage not to. It's not a matter of biology, it's a matter of what and who is more important to you.

Rational Thinking makes an excellent point -- Tiger (like other elite athletes and other super-successful people from other fields) has the drive, determination, will-power, and self-discipline to become the very best in the world at something, and can't dig down and find some other means of scratching that particular itch, without betraying his wife? Give me a break. It's because he doesn't have to. Otherwise, he would.

Sex is not more powerful a drive than survival (which requires eating and drinking), yet people can overcome those drives to the point they starve themselves to death (whether as a political protest or otherwise).

I'm not buying your "he couldn't help himself" argument. I'm guessing your wife isn't, either.

LizaJane said...

And furthermore, citing the wife's attractiveness as a motivation AGAINST cheating is misunderstanding the motivation FOR cheating.

It doesn't matter what she looks like. It's all about HIM. Ugly wives and girlfriends are cheated on just as often as beautiful wives and girlfriends. Sure, a spouse who changes dramatically (say gaining vast amounts of weight or growing a hunchback) may put herself at risk. But more often than not, she has almost nothing to do with it.

Would Hugh Grant have been faithful to Elizabeth Hurley had she just been prettier? Perhaps Billy Joel would've stuck it out with Christie Brinkley if only she had a better figure?

Gimme a break.

Now... compare this "comsumption" with the Tiffany posts. How is it any different? They already had the "best" there is... but they wanted MORE, BETTER, DIFFERENT, NEW... Can't you see? It's the same damn thing. Only in this case, people get hurt.

LizaJane said...

A core-level compulsion also leads people to end up on "The Biggest Loser.". What's more core-level than eating? And yet, the vast majority of them do manage, when faced with their 500-pound reflection and a good ass-whooping, to STOP STUFFING THEIR FACES.

And really, it's a harder thing to stop. No one died from not having sex. Try not eating.

What you're talking about are drives -- and drives are controllable. Strong, yes. Deliciously intoxicating and hard to manage, yes. But NOT out of our control.

What makes people choose to cheat is, as I said, the fact that there really are few real repercussions. That's especially true if you're rich and famous. If Tiger loses gorgeous, young blonde wife #1 well, gorgeous, young blonde wife #2 is right around the corner.

LizaJane said...

1. Elizabeth is so smart!

2. Steve wrote: Where's the self-destructive element, bling-wise, that's so clear in the behaviors I'm writing about? Sure, you could argue that by coveting and wearing bling, you're pissing away money that could be better used elsewhere (which is precisely my argument re "vanity taxes," btw). But that's still open to interpretation and, again, rests on a sense of balance and priorities where reasonable people could disagree.

Steve -- have you not seen the economy? Have you not seen the people in credit card debt up to their eyeballs? All those McMansions foreclosed? It's just bigger bling.

RevRon's Rants said...

Jeez! What's with the fascination with my pants (or lack thereof)? When I first changed my profile pic, Steve specifically asked me, "Are you naked?"

And I responded, "No, I'm not."

That's my story, and I'm sticking by it. But if I WAS nekkid, it's because I couldn't help it. :-)

Steve Salerno said...

LZJ et al: Here are my final words on the subject (and a collective chorus of "THANK GOD!" goes up from the crowd):

First of all, you guys are forgetting (at times) that I wrote the book on bling-lust--or at least the essay--and at other times you're (I think) purposely misinterpreting its point. So please don't act as if I'm oblivious to some of the other guilty pleasures/dangerous passions in our society. I'm not. I just happen to think this is a special case.

Similarly, as for that section about Tiger having filet at home, I don't think I wrote it so carelessly that people would think it's ME saying that. I know full well that cheating is not generally a form of social climbing; there is no pecking order (pecker order?), as it were. For confirmation of this, one need only take a gander at the woman former ESPN announcer Steve Phillips was fooling around with (and he took a ton of ribbing for it, even from Jay Leno, who ran the photos of Phillips' lovely wife, and his rather-less-lovely paramour, side by side). In fact, that whole section of this post was written ironically to REFUTE the sophomoric argument that LZJ seems to take at (literal) face value.

That said, there is no question that there are some men--surely this doesn't apply to Tiger--but some men, generally very attractive, who feel that they "settled" for a "nice" woman when in fact they deserved a true hottie. And I do think that in those cases, THF (the hotness factor) does have a lot to do with it. Such a man wants to prove, if only to himself, that he can run with the A team if he so chooses. Just as many of today's cougars want to bag cute young guys (besides the obvious reason) as a means of reassuring themselves that they've still got it, even at their "advanced ages."

And now I yield the floor to others, who I hope will take this discussion to an appropriately orgasmic conclusion.

roger o'keefe said...

Steve, once again you go into the gutter with sensational coverage of cheap celebrity sex. If you really think these stories are so trivial and part of America's celebrity obsession then stop covering them.

For the record I never liked Tiger from the start. Too much attitude and then a crybaby when the ball stops short of the cup. The worst combination in an athlete.

Anonymous said...

This point may seem a bit tangential, but unlike the issues of morality and self-control, so far it's only been addressed in passing, and I think it's worth making explicit. After the immorality of the infidelity, one thing that many people find shocking is how comparatively plain the objects of these men's illicit affections often are compared to their trophy wives and girlfriends. Jude Law's affair with his nanny while engaged to Sienna Miller comes to mind, as does Prince Charles' enduring and obviously highly sexual passion for the dowdy Camilla, which remained undiminished even while he was married to Diana, widely considered one of the most glamorous women in the world. All of which is simply to say that beauty does not equate to sensuality and mutual sexual chemistry. A man who is able may marry the most beautiful woman he can, the one who seems most desirable to other men, in the same way he'd buy the biggest house or the fastest car: in the eyes of other men, it's a competition, and he wins. Thus, the phrase "trophy wife." But looking hot and being hot aren't at all the same thing, and a man may find that his prized possession has about as much chemistry with him as that other trophy, the example of the taxidermist's skill hanging over the mantel. So will he leave his gorgeous wife for someone he can genuinely enjoy? Hell, no. It's still about the competition, and in the eyes of the world, he's still winning. But if he does encounter someone with whom he shares real chemistry, someone who is hot to him if not to the tabloids, he may be swept under by the tidal pull of an attraction he'd forgotten or never knew existed. In an ideal world, men would forget about competition and marry the woman who's "right" for them, whatever they look like to the rest of the world. But genetics (and Darwin) say it ain't gonna happen anytime soon.

Elizabeth said...

LizaJane, wow! I'ma send you a golf club, girl! :)

Rev:

But if I WAS nekkid, it's because I couldn't help it. :-)

Rev, this just goes without sayin'. ;)

Not sure if that qualifies as a properly orgasmic conclusion, per Steve's expectations, but even if it's not a conclusion to this thread, you need to be congratulated, Steve, on creating a new SHAMblogian phrase that will, no doubt, go down the history (of SHAMblog at least).

I'm talking, of course, about

Because he can't help it.

Ho ho ho! :)

And since I'm still quoting Roger here, I've gotta agree with his assessment of Tiger, though not so much as an athlete (I know nothing about sports), but as a man, even apart from his "transgressions."

C'mon, the guy isn't all that hot. That "crybaby" (thanks, Roger) face is definitely an acquired taste (IMHO). I realize this is not about his face, but still. He looks like he needs a nanny more than a lover/woman. And he acts like it, too.

The revered athlete and role model turns out to be a spoiled brat and a cowardly weasel. That's one "Tiger" who belongs in a sandbox and not in a woman's bed.

Then again, when caught with their pants down, the celebrity cheaters behave surprisingly alike, in a very unmanly manner. With a notable exception of Mark Sanford, of "The Appalachian Trail" fame, who, though he screwed up, had enough guts to admit that the other woman really mattered in his life, something we do not see often, if at all.

Well, tawdry as it is, this stuff is entertaining, in a guilty pleasure kind of way. So pass the popcorn, please, and let's savor the customary non-apology. Sheesh...

Steve Salerno said...

I must say again that comments like that from Anon 10:08--though I suspect I know who it is--leave me wishing once again that everyone posted by name (or at the very least a consistent screen name). That way we could give credit (and, when warranted, debit) where it's due, and establish greater narrative continuity amid the give-and-take.

But getting back to Anon 10:08, apart from being so savvy, the comment is so nicely rendered. That's how it struck me, anyway.

Steve Salerno said...

And though it's a tawdry, down-market thought, I guess in the interest of truth-telling we should concede another factor that suggests itself in footnote to the ideas voiced so elegantly by Anon 10:08: There are not a few men who seek out other women in order to obtain specific sexual favors that their wives either don't/won't do, or do grudgingly/poorly. Oral and especially anal sex come to mind.

RevRon's Rants said...

Alas, Steve, it isn't always a matter of a partner refusing to perform "that." In many cases, one (or both) partners engage in a type of sexual republicanism, wherein the partner (or both partners) becomes a one-person "party of no." Whether denial of *any* sexual attention is due to lack of interest or is being used as an emotional weapon, the result is the same, and the frequently offered excuses ring hollow.

Unfortunately, the two most typical options are to either remain in a hurtful relationship and stray, or to divorce, when the most desirable outcome would be to resolve the issues that led to the "party." I guess that's just too cumbersome if a willing partner is waiting in the wings, unencumbered by any objections to be fed scraps.

Elizabeth said...

Steve, the fact that so many men are lousy lovers -- though they typically think of themselves as the second coming of Casanova -- is also one of the reasons why women seek extramarital relationships. The dissatisfaction cuts both ways. Yet many women and men choose -- yes, choose -- to remain faithful to their partners and work on improving their relationship rather than destroy it in the name of satisfying an itch.

But let's get back to the case at hand, shall we? This is not exactly Charlie and Camilla's romance story. Our Tiger had at least three on-going "relationships" on the side, all with fame- and publicity-hungry women, who, as it appears, really did not matter all that much to him other than being sources of a sexual thrill. A wife at home, twice pregnant already and raising kids, apparently cannot compete with those thrills.

So it seems Tiger, in the typical narcissist fashion, thought he should have his cake and eat it too: a nice family at home to come to, with the hot and adoring(?) wife, even though perhaps boring at times (tends to happen after a woman has a baby), and cheap(?) extras on the side, always ready to accommodate him (and why not? they even preserved their text messages, etc., to capitalize on the "fame" that would result from this relationship).

I hope it was worth it for Tiger -- and for the other women.

I wonder what are the chances now that he will leave Elin and go to any of these women to continue his relationships with them? (My guess is zero. He won't even mention them by name.)

Methinks Elin needs a good lawyer and/or an extra set of golf clubs. A 24/7 "cousin" Vinny with a shotgun wouldn't hurt either. As Steve suggested yesterday -- in a different context, however -- nothing cools the mood for impromptu erotic adventures faster than a gun pointed at one's head. Or elsewhere.

Elizabeth said...

sexual republicanism

LMAO, Rev!

Elizabeth said...

their wives either don't/won't do, or do grudgingly/poorly.

Steve, it's because they can't help it.

;)?

Steve Salerno said...

Hmm. So what would "sexual Marxism" be? Lots of sex for everyone...but it never works?

a/good/lysstener said...

I'd like to throw a word in here. While everybody's busy piling on the men, and most of them do deserve it, we shouldn't forget that a man can't cheat without a cheating partner. Woman may have their reasons for doing it, so I'm not saying a liaison with a married man is always a terrible thing from the woman's side if it fits where she is in life at the time. Sometimes you go with the flow. What I am definitely saying is that a man can't have an affair unless a woman is willing to join him in bed. The men who lie about it don't get away with it for long, and that doesn't apply anyway in the case of celebrities. Every woman on earth knows Tiger's circumstances going in. If adultery is immoral and there are millions of men cheating, they can't all be cheating with the same woman! There must also be millions of immoral women or at least women who have as flexible an approach to marriage as the men do.

I don't like the whole scene any better than anyone else does. Maybe it's what we're stuck with now with hooking up and that whole deal. A girl can get cynical and lose her way. Just let's not be hypocrites about it.

Anonymous said...

"Sometimes you go with the flow"

a-good, are you serious?

a/good/lysstener said...

I don't understand your question Anon. People get involved in all kinds of situations. If we judged everyone for everything they did who would be above judgment? I'm just saying again that it's unfair to judge men for something women are equal participants in. Also we don't know that these women didn't actually come on to Tiger. He didn't have to take them up on it but they didn't have to offer in the first place, if that's what happened.

Btw my verification word is getrubd!

Elizabeth said...

In two parts.

Part 1.

Hmm. So what would "sexual Marxism" be? Lots of sex for everyone...but it never works?

Actually, yes. Those two incurable romantics, Marx and Engels, had a rosy and admirable view of a truly desirable partnership between man and woman as sex-love, based only on the mutual attraction and faithfulness as long as their love lasted. No love -- g'bye. They considered it just and freeing to women -- freeing them of an obligation to enter into and stay in a marriage (which, by its nature, was oppressive to both sides, but especially to women) for reasons other than love and free will.

You may enjoy reading Engels' The Origin of the Family from the 1880's. It's a fantastic paper -- both in the brilliance of the author's analysis of the institution of marriage, and his proposals to remedy the problems associated with marriage.

Contd.

Elizabeth said...

Part 2.

Here is a fragment from Engels' paper, Chapter II (long, but worth it, IMO):

Full freedom of marriage can therefore only be generally established when the abolition of capitalist production and of the property relations created by it has removed all the accompanying economic considerations which still exert such a powerful influence on the choice of a marriage partner. For then there is no other motive left except mutual inclination.

And as sexual love is by its nature exclusive – although at present this exclusiveness is fully realized only in the woman – the marriage based on sexual love is by its nature individual marriage. We have seen how right Bachofen was in regarding the advance from group marriage to individual marriage as primarily due to the women. Only the step from pairing marriage to monogamy can be put down to the credit of the men, and historically the essence of this was to make the position of the women worse and the infidelities of the men easier. If now the economic considerations also disappear which made women put up with the habitual infidelity of their husbands – concern for their own means of existence and still more for their children’s future – then, according to all previous experience, the equality of woman thereby achieved will tend infinitely more to make men really monogamous than to make women polyandrous.

But what will quite certainly disappear from monogamy are all the features stamped upon it through its origin in property relations; these are, in the first place, supremacy of the man, and, secondly, indissolubility. The supremacy of the man in marriage is the simple consequence of his economic supremacy, and with the abolition of the latter will disappear of itself. The indissolubility of marriage is partly a consequence of the economic situation in which monogamy arose, partly tradition from the period when the connection between this economic situation and monogamy was not yet fully understood and was carried to extremes under a religious form. Today it is already broken through at a thousand points. If only the marriage based on love is moral, then also only the marriage in which love continues. But the intense emotion of individual sex-love varies very much in duration from one individual to another, especially among men, and if affection definitely comes to an end or is supplanted by a new passionate love, separation is a benefit for both partners as well as for society – only people will then be spared having to wade through the useless mire of a divorce case.

What we can now conjecture about the way in which sexual relations will be ordered after the impending overthrow of capitalist production is mainly of a negative character, limited for the most part to what will disappear. But what will there be new? That will be answered when a new generation has grown up: a generation of men who never in their lives have known what it is to buy a woman’s surrender with money or any other social instrument of power; a generation of women who have never known what it is to give themselves to a man from any other considerations than real love, or to refuse to give themselves to their lover from fear of the economic consequences. When these people are in the world, they will care precious little what anybody today thinks they ought to do; they will make their own practice and their corresponding public opinion about the practice of each individual – and that will be the end of it.


Alas. Sigh.

Elizabeth said...

As fate -- i.e. the continuing sordid saga of the Woodses -- would have it, Marx and Engels were right about the ickiness factor embedded in a bourgeois marriage.

Steve Salerno said...

Eliz: Was it Nietzsche who said, "What doesn't kill us makes us hornier"?

Elizabeth said...

Was it Nietzsche who said, "What doesn't kill us makes us hornier"?

LOL!

I wouldn't put it past him. Poor Fred was sexually frustrated enough. That's him, in the pic on the right, pulling the cart like a horse, along with R.M. Rilke, both being whipped by Lou Salome, with whom both had a smoking hot relationship.

Eh. These days, they just don't make sexually frustrated philosphers like they used to. :)

BTW, are you saying that this applies to marriage? Hmmm... Probably true. My inner Catholic (still alive after all these years) would certainly agree.

Elizabeth said...

Oops! It's not Rilke in the pic along with Fred, but another sexually frustrated philosopher (is there any other kind?), Paul Ree.

Ree, you guessed it, also had a smoking hot relationship with the brilliant and bewitching Russian, along with Fred and Rilke. (And who didn't, I wonder, ever so jealously sometimes? Sigh. ;)

Jenny said...

Steve, you wrote: "I've never been a mother, but the only comparison I can make is that I think the emotions that drive many men to stray are at the same level of potency as the emotions that drive most women to nurture and protect their newborns."

I wonder whether the compulsion to drink alcohol to excess is on the same level here. Think about the so-called "disease of alcoholism" and the arguments given for rationalizing abuse of alcohol, which destroys marriages as surely as sexual infidelity.

The desire to compulsively drink alcohol in a way that threatens a marriage relationship could, I think, be just as intense as the desire to get a little "strange" on the side. It seems to me like just another drug of choice.

Steve Salerno said...

Jenny: I could buy that--sort of. I do think a tendency towards depression is encoded in certain people (my wife insists that all Irish people are, genetically, prone to depression and/or addiction, though I think you're really, really getting into dangerous territory when you start codifying these traits by ethnicity). But the reason for my stance on infidelity as "a case apart" is that it's a perversion (or maybe not; maybe it's just the ultimate expression?) of a desire that is regarded by all as a basic biologic fact: the compulsion to procreate. Maslow notwithstanding, the only true basic needs of human beings are food and sex. (I do not even see "shelter" as a core need in the same sense. I don't think the urge to find a nice house is present in infants, even in the latent sense.) Almost all living things, left to their own devices, try to eat and reproduce, even if they have to do it, at some levels, via parthenogenesis. So a guy like Tiger is simply doing what all living things do, right on down to paramecia; he just does more of it than some of us.

And of course, some biologists/zoologists would tell you that Nature "intended" for the male of the species to spread his seed and far and often as possible.

Anonymous said...

Steve,

I think you're right on target with this blog. I think we forget that the hollywood romatic version of marriage is a very new concept. In previous times Tiger, would have married all 4 of these ladies, each would have had her own tent with her children and he would have visited them on rota making sure he fulfilled his "strangeness" requirement - and if that wasn't sufficient, he would have had a couple of concubines.....

Somebody sold us women a fairytale ......

Londoner

Bob Collier said...

Can we please stop blaming infidelity on a man's inability to resist their 'natural urges'?

http://community.feministing.com/2009/12/can-we-please-stop-blaming-inf.html

Just spotted that looking for something else. My own opinion in a nutshell probably.

Sure, I can't help it if I get an erection, that's biological, but I can certainly make a conscious and 'socially ecological' decision about where I'm going to put it. So can Tiger Woods. In his circumstances, that would certainly require self-discipline, but he has that in abundance, does he not?

For me, all Tiger Woods would be saying if he claimed not to have a choice in the matter of physical relations with ladies who are not his wife is that he chose to devise, establish and maintain behavioural strategies for winning golf tournaments yet in the matter of all those pretty women buzzing around him he would rather allow himself to behave at the whim of his biological urges, even when it meant putting himself in jeopardy. Presumably because he believes choosing to do nothing doesn't actually count as having a choice.

Elizabeth said...

Unbelievable.

Steve Salerno said...

Bob: Let's look at this in two parts:

1. Sure, I can't help it if I get an erection, that's biological, but I can certainly make a conscious and 'socially ecological' decision about where I'm going to put it.
OK. I'll accept that that's true for you. So far. Maybe you just haven't yet been in a situation where the limits of your discipline are tested. But then how do you get to:

2. So can Tiger Woods?
And you know this...how?

I am continually amazed at people who believe that their standards of behavior and order and self-discipline, if you will, apply to all of mankind. So, do you think pedophiles can really control their desire to molest kids? (If they could...don't you think they would?) Can a person with a truly violent temper control that temper? (In fact, don't we say of such people that their temper is "uncontrollable"?) Can a compulsive neat freak (notice the word we use in describing that person) "decide" to just relax and have a messy house?

If we could all control these behaviors...why do we need jails?

Every day, in thousands of ways great and small, all of us human beings express the nuances of personality and behavior that distinguish us from others. To posit that each and every one of those manifestations is under conscious control is, in my view, absurd. I'm not intending to offend you, Bob, in saying that; I'm referring to the notion as a concept.

Bob Collier said...

"2. So can Tiger Woods?
And you know this...how?"

I know Tiger Woods has that option available to him because every man has that option available to him.

"If we could all control these behaviors...why do we need jails?"

Well, you seem to be talking about conscious control. No, these behaviours are not amenable to conscious control.

Habitual behaviours are unconsciously driven. Conscious awareness of them will not in itself stop or change them in the moment. When a neural pattern fires, it fires. Thinking I wish I hadn't done that is a separate experience. It's observational. What's needed to change the behaviour is to change the neural pattern between the sensory area of the brain (input) and the motor area (output). Create new habits, in other words. That can be done using the same process of training you and I went through to learn to drive a car. Not something that can be achieved in five minutes or in a couple of half hearted attempts.

It takes commitment and it has to be done to be done.

But when somebody is convinced there's nothing they can do they do exactly that - nothing. "I can't help being an alcoholic. It's a disease." "I can't help getting angry. Everybody keeps irritating me." " "I can't help being a paedophile" and so on. "I can't help chasing after anything in a skirt. It's what men do."

When Tiger Woods realised that his life as a superstar included beautiful women who could tempt him away from his wife, did he make a commitment to be faithful to his wife? Here's a guy who committed to thousands of hours of work over many years in order to master a precoccupation that many people (myself included) regard as a waste of a good sheep paddock but apparently he couldn't commit to his wife and children?

He could have chosen to make a commitment to marital fidelity at any time. He chose not to. I don't see how his subsequent behaviour resulted from having no choice. He *made* a choice.

But being unaware that he'd made a choice is a handy excuse that might well be acceptable to the majority of people. It seems to me a lot of people use it. Some of them do indeed end up in jail.

Steve Salerno said...

Bob: I hear what you're saying and I don't disagree with much of it...until we get to the inferences you draw.

Questions:

How do you know that "every man has that option"? As I've said before on this blog, in a sociopath, the lack of a conscience is as real as the lack of an arm in a vet returning from Iraq. So how do we justify blaming the sociopath for doing the kinds of things people without consciences do?

But do we agree that until a person changes those neuron patterns, he's at the mercy of his current neural patterns? So maybe now that Tiger has had his wrist slapped (or his head bashed in with a 9-iron), he can commence that process. But before that? While those neurons were still firing, leading him to other women? Do we agree that he was (manifestly) powerless against that compulsion back then?

You say that "when somebody is convinced" that there's nothing he can do, that's a self-fulfilling recipe for failure. Let's say for the sake of argument that I agree with you. Does that mean that the converse is also predictably true: that once you convince yourself that something can change, that change necessarily happens and is successful? I defy you to prove that. Many people struggle valiantly for years against addictions and then finally give in or die from it. Many people do everything the right way in life--and fail anyway.

I see very little reliable evidence that there's much of a link between what we want and what becomes of us.

And incidentally, let's even say that in his heart, Tiger wants to be a Casanova. Can you really help wanting something? Can I help it that I prefer chocolate to vanilla? Is that my fault?

RevRon's Rants said...

"As I've said before on this blog, in a sociopath, the lack of a conscience is as real as the lack of an arm in a vet returning from Iraq."

Big difference here, Steve. The sociopath knows that his/her dissociation from remorse is inconsistent with most people's makeup, but also knows how to function "as if" that conscience were present in order to fit in and achieve whatever it is they hope to achieve. The amputee cannot act "as if" the missing arm is present, no matter how great the attempt. A sociopath can pretend to feel compassion, yet the amputee cannot catch a baseball with an arm that is not there.

"I see very little reliable evidence that there's much of a link between what we want and what becomes of us."

To revert to your frequent use of sports metaphors, do you honestly believe that an athlete can realistically achieve mastery of a sport if he or she doesn't want it badly enough to put in the time training, practicing, and working out? Can you name any world-class athletes who just showed up and dominated their respective sports? And if they didn't want it, why would they show up in the first place?

Sure, it takes more than merely "wanting" something to acquire it, and barring an incredible streak of luck, there's no way to achieve without the requisite effort.

Tiger put forth the effort to become a champion, and I'd bet my last dollar that there were many times when all he wanted to do was set aside practice and be lazy. But more often than not, he CHOSE to act in a manner that would help him achieve his goals. That took discipline. In his personal life, he obviously CHOSE to act in a manner that didn't require discipline, probably because he thought he could/was entitled.

IMO, your take on this situation is a caricature of your insistence upon determinism as an essential element in human life. Following that example would eventually preclude any degree of personal responsibility, much less the influence of civilization. Even if determinism were fact, we would be much better off pretending it wasn't. And making a person responsible for their actions would be essential, even under such a pretense.

VW = EXUSN... hmmm!

Elizabeth said...

And incidentally, let's even say that in his heart, Tiger wants to be a Casanova. Can you really help wanting something?

As I see it, that's not quite the issue here, Steve. Let Tiger be the womanizer he aspires to be (eight mistresses so far, used at whim, with unprotected sex -- well, he surely is on his way to... something) -- nobody minds that as long as he is square about it with himself, his family and the public (yes), whom he's taken for a ride as the role model of a principled husband and father.

It's the hypocrisy that's so bothersome, and not necessarily his sexual predilections.

Nobody is shocked by, say, George Clooney's dalliances, but Clooney has never pretended to be something he is not and built a popular brand on that false image.

It's akin to the religious leaders or Bible-thumping politicos who preach up to high heaven about family values, etc., while satisfying every little appetite of theirs when they think no one is looking.

Icky. And wrong.

Anonymous said...

'Can I help it that I prefer chocolate to vanilla? Is that my fault?'

No, and it is not a matter of fault. However, lying about your preferences is within your control, and lying to your wife about your fidelity or lack thereof is a complete betrayal.

Any woman who has had the misfortune to marry such a lying scumbag has heard all these excuses before and knows them for exactly that, excuses to get the scumbag off the hook so that he can carry on with his betrayal and lying. His contempt for his wife soon turns into mutual contempt and any sane women leaves the scumbag, no matter how much money and fame is in the deal.

RevRon's Rants said...

Anon 3:59 - It should be noted that the "scumbag ethic" is not gender-specific. Suffice it to say that there are likely as many females rationalizing their dalliances as there are men doing so. And neither has a monopoly on smarminess.

Elizabeth said...

Ron said:

It should be noted that the "scumbag ethic" is not gender-specific.

To wit, from Why Women Have Sex?:

Buss: Some women reported having sex to give someone else an S.T.D. or to extract revenge on someone who had wronged them, for example by sleeping with the offender’s partner. Although infrequent, these sexual motivations can have dramatic and sometimes tragic consequences that are disproportionate to their frequency.

Meston: It was also interesting to see how young women today strongly defy the gender stereotypes of even a decade ago: they had sex just for the pleasure of it and if the partner wanted commitment it was often viewed as negative; they were embarrassed of, and wanted to get rid of, their virginity; they wanted to be sexually experienced and add “another notch on their belt”; they had sex because they were competitive with other women—they wanted to win; and they were curious—they had sex just to see what it was like with men of different ages, ethnicities, careers, and penis sizes.

Bob Collier said...

"How do you know that "every man has that option"?"

I'm obviously not finding the right words to convey what I mean with that one. I wouldn't be confined to one specific response and neither would anyone else?

"But do we agree that until a person changes those neuron patterns, he's at the mercy of his current neural patterns?"

Yes. Notwithstanding conscious strategies such as tying his hands and feet together. I would think of it more as driven by rather than at the mercy of. That idea presupposes he can't do anything at all. Isn't that where we came in?

"Does that mean that the converse is also predictably true: that once you convince yourself that something can change, that change necessarily happens and is successful?"

I think it's rare that change happens spontaneously, even when we're convinced that it's possible. For change to happen, something has to BE changed.

In my experience (30 years of interest in "personal development"), change takes focus and dedication (aka hard work), it takes expertise and it isn't always successful.

Here's a self-help platitude I like though: "Life doesn't guarantee a harvest. What it guarantees is, no seeds no harvest."

For me, change is like that. Set the goal and go for it ... until, as Jim Rohn would say. Well, until might be until change is secured or it may indeed be until everybody decides to give up.

The other thing is, for a person to be changed requires compliance in that person's neurology, whether the technology of change is self-administered or applied by others. If a person doesn't really want to be changed right now, they won't be.

Also, very few people are fortunate enough to be trained for success from birth and for some of us who weren't perhaps we have to be willing to accept that there just aren't enough hours in the day to do what needs to be done.

"I see very little reliable evidence that there's much of a link between what we want and what becomes of us."

We get what we're trained to get. If it happens to be what we want, that's a nice little bonus.

That's why retraining is so important. As I say, relatively few people are trained from birth to be successful. My parents' motto was, you get what you're given and if it's not what you want, you'll just have to put up with it. I dare say most people's beliefs are consistent with that one. No wonder they don't get what they want.

Sometimes, though, we can be feeling so disappointed that we're not getting what we want we don't notice we're getting what we want. That's a whole other can of worms.

"Can I help it that I prefer chocolate to vanilla? Is that my fault?"

It's not your fault, Steve. But it IS your responsibility. :-)

Bob Collier said...

RevRon wrote: "Even if determinism were fact, we would be much better off pretending it wasn't. And making a person responsible for their actions would be essential, even under such a pretense."

If it wasn't required of people that they should take responsibility for their actions, that would be rewarding unawareness and penalising awareness. Not a good idea for society as a whole IMO.

Those of us who are aware that our behavioural decisions are made at an unconscious level moments before we become consciously aware of them, and that our present moment awareness is an observer not a motivator, might also be aware that, when our behaviour appears to be spontaneous, really it's not. It comes from memory and repertoire.

And that we have the ability to review our memories and repertoire any time we choose to. And to decide to make changes if they seem to be necessary. And that we can take that decision out of our neurology where it may wander off and give it an external physical reality in the form of a note in our diary, for example.

Knowing that, I wouldn't ever claim now that I didn't know what I was doing, because I know that I should have known what I could do or probably would do.

Anonymous said...

'Anon 3:59 - It should be noted that the "scumbag ethic" is not gender-specific.'

Scumbaggery is indeed an equal opportunity option, but the contention here was that men exclusively, driven by their masculine biology, are unable to resist the compulsion to poke any passable female. Few women proffer that as an excuse. They proffer different excuses but rarely that particular one.

wv: estrolog

Steve Salerno said...

Bob C: Have I ever formally welcomed you aboard? If not, my apologies.

Understand, I'm not saying it should make your day to be welcomed to my blog, but I do try to do that with all those who post by name.

Bob Collier said...

Thank you very much, Steve. It does make my day, as it happens. :-)

I read so many references to your book when I was involved in a few online bust ups with the Rhonda Byrne Fan Club a couple of years ago, but I'm kind of embarrassed to admit that I haven't actually read it. I will put that right as quickly as possible.

RevRon's Rants said...

Anon 3:00 - I understood the original contention; I was merely attempting to acknowledge - gently - that the previous anon comment sounded like the spleen-venting of someone's personal issues. There's nothing wrong with venting, but it often leads to a downward spiral in the tenor of dialog.

We've seen too many times how vitriolic generalizations can grow rapidly tiresome.