Look who's been pumping iron on the yard...
It's Tiger, Tiger Woods y'all!
Seriously though, I was hipped to this photo through one of my favorite sports blogs on the web Sports On My Mind, and man I still can't get over it. Tiger is full-on "prison yard" mode in this joint, and while some of my female friends have found his posing "sexy", to me it just screams lame dude faking at being hard. Tiger Woods on the yard? Man that's like being a bon-bon at a Jenny Craig convention.
The thing is, these pictures were taken four years ago. That's right, four years ago and they are just now seeing the light of day. And, not surprisingly, the woman who took the photos is the same photog who graced us with those pics of Lebron James and the model chick a while back. I believe I wrote about that if you want to check the archives.
So, I'm left with two questions here: Why would Tiger Woods pose like this, and why would Vanity Fair run these photos now?
Well, the answer to the second question is pretty obvious even for someone as dense as me. Money talks and everything else walks. Vanity Fair is running these photos, which they've sat on for four years now because these photos fit the image of Tiger much of America has right now. Tiger is one of "dem."
In case some of y'all have forgotten, "dem" are the bad Negroes. The ones that cause all the problems. See, prior to the recent revelations that Tiger loves to play pin the tail on a white chick, Tiger was a Good Negro. As a Good Negro, he was loved by many white folks, and they would have been comfortable inviting him into their homes and maybe playing nine holes after dinner. Now, Tiger is one of those sex-crazed black heathens who loves large quantities of white women. He's borderline dangerous.
Vanity Fair understands that sentiment, and thus has decided to capitalize on it by running pictures they've held in reserve for years. I'm sure they'll try to pretend these pics tell us something about the beast lurking within Tiger all these years, but that's a farce. Tiger has a problem with infidelity, thus the only beast lurking within him is the same beast lurking within the vast majority of men. It's called lust, and it ain't new. Vanity Fair is only pretending otherwise because that moves magazines, and well that's the business they are in. Not news dissemination, magazine-selling. Hope y'all hadn't forgotten that fact.
However, the question of why Tiger Woods would pose for what could pass as a yearbook picture from "Oz" is kind of interesting. Clearly, like many cats he likes the idea of being a "thug" without all the baggage of being a thug. I mean, getting stopped by the police is wack, but posing for broads whose panties get wet behind "thuglife" is the business. Tiger's text messages betrayed him as a bit of lame who liked to talk rough and tough for the ladies to boost his cred.
With that in mind, it's no surprise he posed for these pics, it's what a lame dude would do. From what I can tell, Tiger has always chafed at his nerdy image, even though he used that image to sell us Buicks and razors. Like many cats, he saw that bad boys had all the fun, and wanted in. These pics scream "I'm so Hard, I'm so Real," when most of us believe Tiger is anything but hard and real.
Maybe Tiger thought he was just showing off the guns for the ladies, but then why the skully, the grainy quality of the pic and barely concealed menace in his glare. Tiger is posing like a high school cat in a dance photo, only he's 30-years old and a millionaire. That's something only a lame dude would do.
This is just another example of the insidious nature of stereotypes. Tiger and the photographer equated toughness and a certain desirability with prison. This picture and its presentation is more proof that despite his attempts to distance himself from his blackness, Tiger was always a black man in many people's eyes. And when his Good Negro facade crumbled, well he got the standard treatment all black men get.
I wonder how tough he really is...