Monday, April 12, 2010


Enjoy the wife you married as a young man!
lovely as a an angel, beautiful as a rose—
don’t ever stop taking delight in her body.
Never take her love for granted!
Why would you trade enduring intimacies for cheap thrills with a whore?
for dalliance with a promiscuous stranger?
Proverbs 5:17-20 (The Message)

I am not a golfer, or even a golf fan. But I was glad that Phil Mickelson won the Master’s yesterday. If it was a not a triumph of good over evil, it was at least a triumph of normal over bizarre. Phil’s support of his wife in her battle with breast cancer has been in sharp contrast with Tiger’s dalliances.

Phil took time off to be with his wife and family. Tiger took time off to go to a rehab clinic for sex addicts. Tiger announced his progress in rehab and his intentions to come back at carefully orchestrated news conferences and controlled interviews. Phil just came back.

A few weeks ago I commented on Tiger’s news conference. I said then, and I still believe, that he has gone farther than many other wayward celebrities in taking responsibility for his behavior. I believe he was sincere, but that does not mean I am certain that the sincerity of that moment will stay with him over the months and years ahead. Only time will tell how he chooses to live his life.

We want our sports heroes to be virtuous as well as successful. We want them to succeed because of their character. And we are disappointed when they do not live up to the ideals we have projected for them.

If Phil Mickelson is not the good guy in this, he is at least the ordinary guy, the normal guy, the guy who did what guys are supposed to do.

That’s something to celebrate.

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