I know a lot of people have opinions about Tiger. No one can really say anything intelligent and salient about him that he doesn’t say about himself, mainly because he is extremely knowledgeable on everything golf.
But I have some knowledge that Tiger doesn’t. He has been clean-shaven for most of his career, and hasn’t tested the waters of what is and is not ok in the facial hair department. The Mustafa, or chin beard thing, just doesn’t work.
Before I jump into it, I have to mention that I have credentials in this area, because, quite honestly, I am a hairy man. My dad taught me how to shave in 5th grade, because my peach fuzz was getting out of control. Since that time, I’ve tried out some of the best and worst facial hair stylings, with varying results. Let me tell you, there are some “do nots” when it comes to beards.
It is my expert opinion that Tiger’s Mustafa chin beard is gross, and his wearing of that beard renders him immature in this faculty. Come on man. Tiger is one of the most visible athletes in the world. Millions of people watch golf to watch him golf. Teenagers that are big Tiger fans, and are just getting enough hair to grow a Mustafa chin beard, will grow a Mustafa chin beard because Tiger has one. Tiger makes this chin beard socially acceptable, which is not acceptable.
Look at what Johnny Depp did to my friend Julian and his older brother Pascal. If we continue letting Tiger wear the chin beard, it will stay socially acceptable. But we can’t ask Tiger to stop. It’s his face, and he can do what he wants with it.
I know this isn’t a pop culture blog. I’m getting to it. Tiger does everything in his life for a reason. He structures his life in order to give him the best opportunities to golf, most recently building a $60 million “bachelor pad” in Jupiter, Fl. When asked about the home, Tiger responded: “I’m excited about that and I’m even more excited about my new practice facility. It’s phenomenal.” But after some bad messages got out, we now can infer that Tiger does everything to benefit him directly, with no regard to the implications of his actions. So what benefit does the dumb chin beard bring him?
There are a few possible explanations for this, the first being: we have learned that Tiger is less mature than he seems (or maybe he was just making up for being overly mature as a youth). So maybe he just likes the way it looks. That’s possible.
He could be using it to push women away, because having a wife and children clearly didn’t work for him. And from the looks of it, it may be working. Why would he be pushing away women, now that he is single you ask? Could it be that he actually wants to distract the media, so that he can focus on his game?
Mike Ditka used this strategy throughout his coaching days to deflect questions about his team and their season. He used a variety of strategies to put himself in the limelight and force reporters to use some of their questions on him, including wearing underwear to an interview. He also called the Metrodome the “Rollerdome,” and said that he and his players might as well wear roller skates. He wore roller skates to that interview and said, “I have my reasons for everything. When I say something, there’s a reason for it.”
So maybe Tiger does too. But there is a personal and social effect of this chin beard, due to the fact that Tiger is a household name. He is not accounting for this negative social effect, and maybe that is a good thing too. But coming from a guy who used to think this looked good, trust me Tiger, that doesn’t.