Opinion Columns & Blogs

Carl Hiaasen: What was Tiger thinking?

(Rejected first draft of a statement by Tiger Woods prepared for his Web site.)

Recently on this page, I apologized for my personal transgressions and pleaded for the media to give me and my family some privacy. Who was I kidding?

Now I've got helicopters buzzing my house, paparazzi staking out the gym, and even that dog David Letterman is making fun of me. Each day some new babe is holding a press conference or selling her story to a tabloid.

Clearly I need a new public-relations strategy. Maybe the time has come to be totally honest and set the record straight.

To all the women who claim to have had wild sex with me: Enough already! I give up. There are so many that my lawyers can't sort out the real girlfriends from the phony girlfriends. I suppose it's possible that I slept with all of them, but I honestly don't remember.

That Ambien — it seriously kicks butt.

But, hey, I'm not blaming drugs. Whatever happened in all those hot tubs and elevators was my fault, and mine alone. I'm basically just a hound, OK? Another sex-crazed jock who can't say no when the opportunity presents itself.

Anybody who grows up hitting a thousand golf balls a day never dreams of becoming a sex magnet for hotties. Let's face it, the PGA ain't exactly the NBA.

But now I've hurt my family and messed up my life, and somehow I've got to make things right. Instead of hiding out like a billionaire coward, I'm going to man up. Concerned fans have been flooding my Web site with e-mails, and I'd like to candidly answer a few of the most frequently asked questions.

John F., in Akron, writes: "Dear Tiger, what exactly is a VIP club hostess?"

Well, John, VIP club hostesses are gorgeous single women who work at fancy nightclubs where ordinary mokes like you can't get past the front door. But that's a good thing, because these slinky vixens would only seduce you and promise not to tell a soul and then call your BlackBerry in the middle of the damn night and wake up your wife and. . . .

Anyway, stay away from those hostesses!

Rick K., in Phoenix, writes: "Dear T.W., what really happened the night you crashed your Escalade?"

Dude, I don't remember anything except the sound of breaking glass, and then somebody hollering at me in Swedish.

Louise W., in Orlando, follows up: "But why wouldn't you agree to be interviewed by the Highway Patrol?"

Good question, Louise. For days after the accident, I wasn't even able to speak. When my SUV struck that tree, a 3-iron must have fallen out of the branches and crashed through the windshield and smashed me right in the mouth.

It's possible, right?

Mary M., in Atlanta, writes: "Dear Tiger, is it true that you're losing sponsors because of the scandal?"

That's absolutely false! All my corporate sponsors are loyally supporting me, including that big sports equipment company, the razor company and the high-energy beverage company.

I'd mention them all by name, but they've asked me not to do that (or be photographed using their products) for at least the next six months. Their lawyers have been very nice about it, though.

Jerry L., in New York, writes: "Dear Mr. Woods, I was shocked by the explicit text messages that you exchanged with some of your girlfriends. What do you have to say to all your disappointed fans?"

Look, Jer, I'm not perfect, and I'm obviously not as smart as everyone thought. None of my cool buds like Jeter or Jordan ever explained to me that text messages just sort of float around cyberspace forever. Is that the scariest thing you ever heard? No wonder I've got insomnia.

Tanya L., in Las Vegas, writes: "Hey, Tiggy, remember me from that time in the penthouse at Caesar's when — "

Nice try, Tanya. Or whatever your real name is.

Mike G., in Miami Beach, writes: "Dear Wood Man, you are my hero! I mean, like, porn stars? Seriously?"

Whoa, Mike. They didn't tell me they were porn stars. They said they worked for Cirque du Soleil. I guess all those dragon tattoos should have tipped me off.

Tony R., in Pebble Beach, writes: "Dear Tiger, I can't hit a downhill bunker shot to save my life. Should I switch to a 60-degree wedge?"

Stick with your 56-degree, Tony, but play the ball in the center of your stance with the club face slightly open.

And, by the way, God bless you for asking.

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