Tiger Woods wishes he were junjun

Up early this morning and there’s frost on the ground and that metallic taste to the breeze and the deep space feeling of a winter night. The living earth has peeled back to sticks and rocks, to the raw edge of existence. And there’s more than meets the eye, a whole world in hibernation, an entire life beyond the horizon. But for now it’s a slog. And off we go.

There’s a severe weather watch on the computer, faux water bureau employees on the scam for unsuspecting senior citizens. Someone named BeatrizO sends an advisory about high-quality shoes, purses and other leather products, which quality are good (direct quote), and all available at astonishing savings. No thanks, but I fall in love with his/her opening line: “I am junjun.” No capitals, but lots of mystery. Is there no capitalization where junjun comes from? I imagine a childhood spent in some remote savannah, a grass hut, cadaverous sheep and cows in the yard, a frayed poster of Madonna in a bustier. Young junjun peers up at the image and imagines the world beyond the jungle. Mascara, lingerie, and famous name brands. An entire existence waiting to be had. “I am junjun,” she whispers, and a secret vow is made.

I don’t care about golf or Tiger Woods, but I know what he’s done and what it represents, and I can sense how heavily it all must weigh on him. Raised to be perfect, he grew up to let no one down. Everyone else goes home at the end of the day, but when the lights go out he’s still Tiger, or whatever his real name is (not junjun). And what is there for him when he’s all alone? Far too much, nothing close to enough, some combination of these things. So he has that glossy blonde wife and some massive execu-manse in a gated community. Otherworldly ideas, terrible fears, the realization that life on Olympus isn’t quite as fulfilling as everyone else imagines.

Today we learn, or are told, that he entertained dreams involving his alleged girlfriend and an impressive cast of other wildly giftedl young men. Derek Jeter. A TV star from Fox’s “Bones.” Which is fascinating, albeit for all the wrong reasons, and also horrifying. Not the dreams themselves, no matter how polymorphously perverse they are, but that whoever he shared them with – his girlfriend? – is now retailing them to the world. And the world is ravenous.

Severe weather, indeed. I have no idea whether Tiger deserves sympathy or even more condemnation than TMZ is hurling at him just now. But I know enough to feel sorry that anyone cares this much. That the public consciousness is this cold and empty, that the sad grass hut where junjun’s aged parents greeted this morning by milking the cows and gathering the eggs feels so much more like the home we all dream of having. 

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