ON Nov. 27, 2009, Tiger Woods crashed his Cadillac Escalade into a fire hydrant after hitting a tree in their plush neighborhood in Ponte Vedra, Florida .
Except for a minor gash in his face, Woods, who was alone in the SUV, was not badly hurt.
It happened on Thanksgiving Day, the most celebrated day in America .
Police cited Woods for reckless driving. Woods was fined $64.
You think that was there is to it?
Uh-oh. Almost, but not quite.
The crash was triggered by Woods’ apparent dash for safety to elude the fury of his wife, Elin.
Neighbors said they saw Elin, the blonde former nanny from Sweden, chasing Woods out of the house with a club that appeared to them “like a 7-iron.”
The uproar was soon linked to an earlier tabloid report (National Enquirer) that said Woods was with a New York lady when Tiger won the Australian Masters two weeks earlier in Melbourne.
Virtually all the tabloids from the US to Europe feasted on the National Enquirer expose. Before screaming headlines on Woods’ alleged salacious “sexcapades” could subside, nearly two dozen women, some of them porn stars, were linked in alleged trysts with the no. 1 golfer of the world.
Next, we hear Elin leaving the Woods nest for Stockholm with the Woods kids, daughter Sam Alexis 3, and son Charlie Axel 18 months.
On Feb. 19, Woods appeared in public for the first time to apologize for “my affairs.”
“I was unfaithful,” he said. “I had affairs. I cheated. What I did is not acceptable, and I’m the only person to blame.”
Nine months later, on Aug. 24, Woods and Elin would appear in court to hear the judge say their marriage on Oct. 5, 2004 at the Sandy Lne golf Resort in Barbados had been dissolved.
The divorce said Tiger, 34, and Elin, 30, would share parenting of their children, and Elin will receive $100 million, according to TMZ.com.
Will the divorce finally free Woods from a stymie that saw him winless in 10 tournaments in 10 starts since that last victory in Australia in November?
That will be known this week, when Woods plays in The Barclays.
Sure, a win would be big for Woods as that’d ensure his berth in the Ryder Cup.
But a loss wouldn’t hurt, though.
People would just say it’d be simply too soon for him to win again. Long shot.
But with Woods, strangers things have happened so that, if he wins by Sunday (Monday in Manila ), I’ll be the least surprised.
For Woods, it’s a new life.
Everybody deserves a second chance.
Al Mendoza, Manila Standard Today