12/31/09

Stuff I've learned/observed/experienced

I've been back in Korea for a little more than a week. Here's some random stuff.

* * *

If there's a line forming, then stand it. You won't regret it even if you don't want to be in the line. You never know when an entire elementary school of kids may show up. A colleague of mine who didn't take my advice dallied about for a few minutes. Suddenly, a million Korean kids showed up. He got back in line, but far enough that I needed binoculars to see him. Thankfully, the lines in Korea go quickly, so he ate about 15 minutes after I did.

* * *

My favorite sandwich shop opens at 10 a.m. I learned that a few days ago at 8:30 a.m., after walking 15 minutes out of the way to eat there.

* * *

I saw one of the directors at my job wearing a mask over his nose and mouth. Does he know something I don't know?

* * *

As a foreigner in Korea, I often must trust the Koreans around me. My colleagues helped me set up my bank account. I was standing there, with my documents out in the open for anyone, along with my allegedly secret password that seemed to be available for public information.

People show up at my apartment saying they need to take me somewhere. I do ask them questions about who they are just to confirm that I'm not being shipped off to China.

I should blog more often just so someone will notice if I have gone missing.

* * *

It snowed a lot a few days ago. It snowed the day after I arrived. Before I left D.C. I was slip sliding around in 16 inches of snow.

I hate snow. But I already knew that.

* * *

There is occasionally miscommunication between Koreans and non-Koreans. The more I understand Korean, the more I see that there is plenty of miscommunication between Koreans, too.

That would be fine if it didn't involve me. But I had another example...a manager rushed to me, saying I had to be at the main office at 4:40 p.m. today. At about 5:10, after I asked many times in Korean and English why I needed to be there, the manager apologized that I didn't need to be there.

I knew that, too.

* * *

Drivers can run red lights here at small intersections, as long as there are not pedestrians present, and as long as there aren't other cars speeding through the green light. Unfortunately, jaywalking is also rampant, meaning bad things happen at some intersections at which both drivers and pedestrians don't pay attention to signs and lights.

* * *

The ATM machine I went to earlier today was bilingual (Korean and English). There may have been other languages, I forgot to check.

I was just happy to be able to do stuff with my money in English. I hate guessing, wondering if the button I'm pushing means that I'm transferring my money to someone else's account.

* * *

A bad thing about banks here...a Korean friend of mine told me earlier today that they charge customers a fee for withdrawing money from an ATM. That's even when the bank is closed and you don't have an option to go directly to a live teller.

If there's a user fee, it should be for seeing a live person, not an ATM machine that is available 24/7.

* * *

Not every Korean is generous. The guy who picked me up at the airport not only did not offer me and the other pickup anything to eat, but he also proceeded to eat a Korean snack as he drove. He was munching away.

He did arrange for food later before we stopped for the night at a remote location. He dropped us off at a 7-11.

* * *

GPS machines in Korea warn drivers when they have gone several kilometers over the speed limit in an area with speed cameras. The damn sound can get so loud that you slow down just to shut it up. In comparison, radar detectors in America are almost always illegal. I guess the point here is really to get people to stop speeding, not to collect money for the city.

* * *

I also love the gas stations over here. Stopped at one with a colleague a few days ago. Apparently every gas station in South Korea is full-service. I've never seen customers pump their own gas.

The receipt shows customers that 10% of the money collected was a tax.

They serve canned coffee at some gas stations. Of course, the coffee snobs won't like that.

* * *

Drivers in Seoul are bad. I hate them.

The only thing I hate more than the drivers in Seoul are the drivers outside of Seoul.

CJL

linked by Booker Rising,

Update: Thomas Sowell was interviewed by Walter E. Williams on the show. I'll listen to it and mention their main points.

Man of the Year (again)!

I noticed that Booker Rising's readers have named Thomas Sowell the site's Bookerista of the Year. Well-deserved, to be sure.

I just held snap elections. I have been named Person of the Year of my blog. That has happened every year I've had this thing. Even when I forgot to hold elections I retroactively held elections and won.

Reasons my award means more:

1) Sowell would never show up at a Booker Rising conference to accept the award.
2) Because I've blogged regularly from both Korea and America, that means I've been Person of the Year on two different continents.

* * *

Thomas Sowell's longtime partner in crime, Walter E. Williams, will be hosting the Rush Limbaugh Show December 31.

CJL

12/26/09

Who can spit in the face of a country that is smiling?

Christmas eve, after arriving in South Korea the night before, I joined a group of Americans, Canadians, Brits and Koreans at a party in Seoul. During one of the stops, I disappeared for a few minutes to check my email at a PC room (PC방). They are very popular places customers can use a computer for about 70 cents an hour.

The problem is that I barely got to do much on the computer the other night. One of the guys working at the place treated me like I was about to write him a one-million dollar check (that would not bounce). Most PC rooms provide customers with a drink, such as iced coffee. Not only did he bring me the customary iced coffee, but also a package of cookies. Then, as I tried to check my email, he peppered me with questions about where I'm from, how long I would be in Korea, etc. It was a mixture of Korean and English, as the customers nearby watched, clearly amused.

Then, because it was Christmas Eve, I seemed to give him an early present. I asked him if I could take a photo with him.

I'm surprised he didn't ask me to wait so he could go get a haircut.

* * *

According to a former student of mine, there's an old Korean saying: Who can spit in the eye of a man who is smiling? It seems funny considering that Koreans are not known for smiling. Back when I was in Korea in the 1990s, I was told by Koreans not to be upset by unsmiling Koreans. Many people used to be taught that a big smile was a sign of stupidity.

As I noted a few months ago, a university in South Korea was even setting a Smile Clinic.

* * *

On the way home at the end of the night, waiting for the metro, there were some Americans cursing and complaining about Korea. I guess they were American. Definitely black in their skin color, and black in the Shakespearean sense of the word. They weren't listing specific grievances. Just cursing and complaining about what a lousy country Korea is. I asked a Korean guy in my small group if Koreans would be willing to start up a Deportation Fund to help such people get back home. He was ready to reach into his own pocket to get the fund going.

People have gripes about wherever they are, I know. There just seems to be something uncouth about complaining on the subway while using language that would make a sailor blush.

It is much better to do that type of thing on a blog.

* * *

A few minutes later, on the subway, three white guys got on, complaining and cursing in English like they were rap stars on the way to an audition. Mostly, they were complaining in graphic language about not being able to meet more Korean women, about Korean women being prudes. I did my best to ignore them. My colleague, a very proper Brit, noticed that the seats across from them were vacant.

I said there was a good reason no one was sitting across from them.

* * *

Even some of my new acquaintances acted like knuckleheads during the night. At one point, when we were walking down the street, they grabbed some of the New Year's Eve poppers that were on a table in front of a bakery and started setting them off. The store owners probably hadn't imagined that someone would just GRAB the items and set them off.

Of course, it startled some of the people we walked past. I grabbed a few of the unpopped ones to return the bakery. I did my best to apologize in Korean to the Koreans who had their stuff stolen, explaining that those guys were drunk.

Some people might think I've gone native and overly apologetic. Some have previously suggested that, as a black person in Korea, I should try to be a credit to my race.

Not yet. At heart, I'm a guy who has always believed it is wrong to take other people's stuff without their permission.

I'm a credit to myself. If I happen to be a credit to my race when it is in my interest then I suppose that is a bonus for the world...

* * *

We did make many Koreans smile. Early in the night, on our way to the Christmas Eve party, my British colleague mentioned that he could not read in Korean. So I proceeded to teach him the basics of learning to read in Korean. I suppose that it was a funny scene: A native English speaker teaching another native English speaker how to read in Korean. I can be quite demonstrative when I'm teaching. At one point, I even stood up, pointing at a couple of the words on the subway train to show him that he would be able to read almost anything.

He was really pleased that I had successfully taught him a couple of words. A young Korean man was so enraptured with our impromptu class that he almost fell over into my colleague's lap. He got off a few stops earlier, smiling as he left.

When I stumbled with a bit of the pronunciation, I then asked the Korean man who then sat down in the other guy's place to help out. He was delighted to do so. When he got off the train, he wished us well in our time in Korea, smiling like he had also received a good million dollar check.

* * *

The impromptu Korean class continued through the night, including after my colleague got the munchies. So we stopped at a Korean restaurant. Again, I demonstrated to him that he'd be able to read anything by pointing to words on the menu on the wall. Just about all of the Koreans in the restaurant were watching me as I was teaching him. A Korean friend with us was absolutely loving it, and not just because he was still a bit drunk.

He said he was amazed, he wondered if I had ever taught Korean before and if I could actually speak better than I had been saying.

CJL

12/25/09

Breen's column that outraged Samsung


“What People Got for Christmas”
Michael Breen
The Korea Times
December 25, 2009

At this time of year when Seoul’s bare winter trees are wrapped in beckoning lights ― blue and white are the in colors ― and Merry Xmas signs at hotels and department stores are really saying come-hither-gentle-reveler-and-empty-your-purse, and when expensive restaurants belch noisy year-end office party groups onto every street and the karaoke rooms are full, it is tempting to declare that Christmas has lost its soul.

But that would be a mistake. Christmas is a time for giving, and, before they can be given, gifts have to be bought. Commerce is good. Here, as proof, is a round up of some of the gifts given and received today by people in the news.

Samsung, the world’s largest conglomerate and the rock upon which the Korean economy rests, sent traditional year-end cards offering best wishes for 2010 to the country’s politicians, prosecutors and journalists, along with 50 million won in gift certificates.

Employees received two framed photographs of Lee Jae-yong, the new Chief Operating Officer at Samsung Electronics Co., with instructions to place one in their children’s bedroom and the other in their living rooms beside but slightly below the one of his father, Lee Kun-hee.

At Hyundai Motor, where the mood is buoyant thanks to booming sales in America, management gave each labor union leader a bobble head doll of Chairman Chung Mong-koo to put in the rear window of their cars. Union officials are scanning the toys for explosives.

Huh Kyung-young, the zany presidential candidate who claimed an IQ of 430 and was jailed last year for spreading false rumors that he had an intimate relationship with the politician Park Geun-hye, hasn’t given up. He sent her an inflatable doll of himself. Park, who is single and has a sense of humor, sent him a coupon for a consultation at the Joy-Full Hospital, the Gangnam facility that specializes in coloproctology.

Among the thousands of gifts and cards from international fans, the singer Rain received a wedding proposal from the British sensation Susan Boyle, which said, “Hey, Pee. If yooz cum tae ma wee hoos in Scotland, ah’ll show yooz a guid time.” (I only know this because Rain asked me to translate.) In a nice note, the Barbadian singer Rihanna said she thought of him every time she sang “Under My Umbrella.” “Come see me when Chris is not here, ‘ere ‘ere eh eh,” she wrote, in reference to her off-on boyfriend Chris Brown.

The ever-popular skater Kim Yuna said her Christmas present to fans this year was a promise to focus on skating and not appear in any ads in 2010.
President Lee Myung-bak sent world leaders a package of Korean food prepared by the First Lady, Kim Yoon-ok, with handwritten instructions on how to eat each item. The card to U.S. President Barack Obama read: “Hi, Obama and Mitchel. Korean food will soon be number one in the world. Put the safe beef, called hanwoo, in the lettuce holding by hand and place some small rice in there with the chopstick and wrap and eat. Take care the kimchi because you’re foreigners! It’s so hot it might blow you off! Do not beat the secret service!”

The president gave each Blue House staff member a pair of Wellington boots, to prepare them for next year’s focus on the Four Rivers Restoration Project. Staff members were not amused. “If he really cared, he would have peeled the made-in-China label off,” one female aide said.

There was also gloom in South Chungcheong Province where residents, whose dream for the proposed new capital at Sejong City was dashed by the Prime Minister in 2009, couldn’t muster the enthusiasm to send presents.

But Christmas gifts were business as usual at the National Tax Service, where junior officials hoping for promotion looked for the best ways to get the attention of their bosses. Among gifts received by the senior taxmen this year were the Mona Lisa by the Italian painter L. da Vinci, and the Statue of David, a sculpture by another Italian artist, Michelangelo di Lodovico Buonarroti Simoni.

From overseas, the new Japanese Prime Minister, Yukio Hatoyama, sent President Lee a surprise invitation to visit Japan along with two complimentary ferry tickets to the Dokdo Islets. “Takeshima is halfway between our two countries,” he wrote in the card. “I think it can be a symbol of the new relationship that we can forge for our people.”

The prime minister’s wife, Miyuki, enclosed tickets for Korea’s first couple to join her next visit to Venus.

Chinese President Hu Jintao sent Lee a framed 100-yuan note with a reminder not to give a visitor visa to the Dalai Lama this year.

The leaders of the two Koreas also exchanged gifts in a tradition that began with the first summit in 2000. Lee sent Kim Jong-il a ship full of fertilizer and the dark blue Hyundai windsheeter he wore when he was the CEO of Hyundai Construction & Engineering in the 1970s. Sources say Lee also paid for a prayer pledge from his church, the Somang Presbyterian Church. Elders will undertake a 40-day chain prayer asking Jesus to speak to Kim on both the nuclear and gulag issues.

Kim, meanwhile, thanked the Lees for this year’s food aid and sent them a crate of 1943 Domaine de La Romanee Conti La Tache, a rare vintage wine, and a large packet of Kupi Luwak coffee beans. This rare bean ― fewer than 450 lbs. are harvested each year ― is extracted from the feces of the palm civet, a cat-like mammal that lives in Indonesia.

So, you see, there’s a lot of love out there. That’s what the city lights mean.

LA Times, May 10, 2010


12/20/09

"One-man crime wave" crashes

A friend of mine called me a few days ago. He was sad when he heard about the death of Chris Henry, the football player who died a few days ago in a domestic dispute with the mother of his three children. People don't like to speak ill of the dead so I can understand his concern, as well as those of bloggers. Some people who are saying nice things about Henry never heard of him until they had heard he had died.

The main point of the nice comments has been that Henry had been trying to turn his life around.

Here's the part of the story that adds some context. It is from a 911 call by a woman who was following the truck Henry was on shortly before he expired:
"It's got a black man on it with no shirt on, and he's got his arm in a cast and black pants on," she told a dispatcher. "He's beating on the back of this truck window. ... I don't know if he's trying to break in or something. It just looks crazy. It's a girl driving it."
If Henry had not been arrested five times or been suspended by the NFL for half a season (which is known for being lenient with players) then I might be more sympathetic. Henry, who was called a "one-man crime wave" by a judge, crashed to reality a few days ago.

Kids often look up to athletes as role models. With that in mind, I'd like to suggest a few lessons to be learned from Henry's case:

1) You should not try to resolve your domestic problems with violence. After all, your fiancee may keep driving. You may fall off the back of the truck and hit your head on the ground. A better strategy when your fiancee is driving off in the truck? Wave at the truck, and say a cute rhyme, such as, "goodbye truck, goodbye fiancee, I'll live another day."

2) Stories about turning your life around should not include a report that you are beating on the back of a truck being driven by your fiancee. It undercuts your credibility.

3) A lot of women are bad drivers so you should not beat on the back of a truck as a woman is driving. If she doesn't want you in the truck then get a ride with a different woman.

4) On the bright side, if you at least say you were turning your life around there will always be people to defend you.

CJL

Baby, It's Climate Change outside

Back in the day when I was a student, I wondered why homeless people stayed in cold climates. If you're going to be homeless, why not be homeless somewhere warm?

I guess it should have been self-evident...if you have made decisions that have landed you on the street then you probably won't make decisions putting yourself anywhere except on a better street corner nearby.

I remember arguing to some people who called themselves homeless advocates that instead of sleeping overnight with homeless people to show they cared, that they'd help the homeless more by helping them move to the deep south for the winter.

After trudging through the snow yesterday in D.C. and Virginia,, I'm sorry I didn't set up such a program so I could apply to be moved to Florida or Texas.

I mean, if even a bird with a tiny brain knows to move deep south for the winter, then why am I still living in a cold weather climate?

* * *

I'm not following political issues that much these days, but...

I have noticed that global warming has become climate change. It is a sleight-of-hand move that I won't go along with. During the 1970s there were warnings that there was a chance we'd have global cooling. That morphed into global warming. Then it became a little tough to explain how the same problem could lead to either warming or cooling.

So...Viola! Abracadabra! Cover your eyes! Cover your brain! Forget what we were saying! Global warming+global cooling=climate change.

The tremendous snow should be a rude reminder that humans have very little control over the climate or weather. Even if we wanted to make it snow 27 inches over a large area in just a day, could we get it done? Could we stop it? I assume we can't stop it because if we could then I would not have been slip sliding around yesterday.

* * *

Yes, I ignored the repeated warnings to stay home yesterday. At least I did (make that, could) not drive.

There were no taxis on the street. I walked for five minutes to the metro--I saw one car moving, slowly. There were very few people on the street. The mall I went to last night was a ghost town.

How bad were things?

Even the Chinese restaurant at the mall ran out of food!

Even the McDonald's near my home was closed!

I bet even the hookers were home on a Friday night!

McDonald's closed? Chinese restaurants running out of food?

The only other time I've seen things like this, with so few people out, with so many restaurants closed? I went to New Orleans a few months after Katrina devastated the city. But that was not a natural disaster, at least according to the conspiracy theorists who thought it was part of former president Bush's plan to destroy the city and eliminate black people.

* * *

linked by pengram, Booker Rising,

* * *


Ray Charles & Betty Carter - Baby It's Cold Outside

12/4/09

Is Our Education Reporters Learning?

Yesterday I went to the Brookings Institution for a policy forum, No Reader Left Behind: Improving Media Coverage of Education, celebrating the release of the report, "Invisible: 1.4 Percent Coverage for Education is Not Enough."

The main point of the paper: The media doesn't write about education enough and when they do they tend to write about non-education topics.

* * *

A few random thoughts and comments:

* The authors say that 1.4% is not enough. But what is a better or more palatable percentage? If they had announced that 3.3 or 5.2% of stories were about education then those numbers might also seem small.

Whenever someone introduces a shocking or dire statistic without comparing it to another number, I'm reminded of the economist who was asked, "How's your wife," and he answered, "Compared to what?" So 1.4% is not enough...compared to what?

* If 1.4% is too not enough, then could someone please explain why I have had to set up a folder filter for all of the friendly people sending me links to education articles and blogs? Anyone who wants to read about education all day long can do so. I used to do that back when I was at Cato and Fight For Children. I'm not paid to do so anymore so I am free to ignore the stories just as my fellow citizens do. But really, if education is your interest then you can spend your day going through education stories and if you have more free time then you can read the original studies rather than just the reports.

* I'm not convinced that there is a demand for more education coverage. I really do wish that someone with access to website hits of newspapers would have been on the panel to tell us if 1.4% of the hits on their sites were to education articles. People may say they want to read more education articles, but they also say they want to lose weight and do many other things they never plan on doing.

* The authors did raise a good point that too many education stories are about non-education issues. On page 8 of the report they demonstrate that the most common stories were on school finance/budget cutbacks, politics in education, H1N1 or heath, the economic stimulus package.

Good point.

My question: Do they believe that more coverage would be on education related issues? As the old saying goes, if it bleeds, it leads. There would probably be more in-depth stories about budgets and political issues.

* One reason there isn't much of a demand for national education stories: People tend to personalize education. Quick anecdote here: Back when I was a guest host then later a host on XM Radio, I did a few education-focused shows. Most of the people who called in did so to discuss their own kids, not national stories. Those stories just don't seem to resonate in education. No Child Left Behind or a cut in the soccer program at your school? Most people want to discuss the soccer program.

Thankfully, I didn't try to have an education focused show, I might not have lasted the first month.

* E.J. Dionne of the Washington Post (he's stage left) highlighted recommendation #5 from the report: "Reporters should draw on education research in the way that health care reporters use medical research." Sounds good but it won't happen.

a) If there is a new medical innovation, cure, or some form of cosmetic surgery then you can go to a doctor to get it done, sometimes immediately. But if there's something new in education then can you go to your local school and ask them to put that in the curriculum? Much education research ends up being esoteric battles over ideological differences about what a proper education should be (and most people can't even define what they mean by "education") whereas with medical research there are clear outcomes.

b) I'm not a doctor but it does seem that there is some settled science. Disputes, of course, but has a doctor tried to put leeches on you recently? With education is there an issue the late Gerald Bracey and Chester Finn would have agreed about--and for the same reasons? School uniforms, sex ed, school prayer, home schooling, teacher training, vouchers, diversity, testing, charters, etc., etc., etc. To paraphrase George Bernard Shaw--you could line up all of the education researchers in a line and they still wouldn't come to a conclusion.

* The speakers mentioned that the education beat needs to become more valuable or respected. Right now, it is a stepping stone for many reporters. The case of Jay Mathews of the Washington Post was cited.

But journalists skip around different beats. That's expected! They are supposed to know something about everything and apparently have experience covering just about every beat as they rise in the world of journalism. Jay Mathews was a reporter for 17 years and the author of 3 books on China before he wrote his first book on education. He has written 10 books, just 3 or 4 of which are about education. Certainly there are some who stay on one beat but there are many more who bounce around.

* The speakers discussed the lack of access to classrooms. I was tempted to get up and yell, "You lie." It is the eternal Groucho Marx contradiction of journalism. Marx (or W.C. Fields, or Oscar Wilde, or Woody Allen) said he would never be a member of a club that would have him as a member. On the one hand, journalists often complain about everybody and their momma begging them to write about them and their organization. On the other hand, journalists complain that they don't have access to particular organizations or people.

Journalists don't like to go places they have been invited. They want to go places where they must go undercover. I mentioned to a couple of the speakers and journalists who discussed the lack of access to classrooms as a barrier to education coverage that there are at least 40 charter schools in D.C. that I could lead them on tours on as soon as they were ready to go. Based on my visits to charter schools, they are desperate to tell their stories, to show people what they are doing. I say that as someone who is not an enthusiastic supporter of charter schools. I also mentioned that there is a for-profit education center I recently visited. The school leaders claim in their brochure literature that they have on average raised SAT scores 362 points. I invited the journalists at the event to visit there, too. There certainly should be some interest in people producing such good results.

They weren't interested.

It has been said, What someone wants you to publish is advertising; everything else is news. Journalists aren't interested in visiting places they get invited.

The mistake I made was in taking those journalists seriously. If I had mentioned a problem with the budgets of those schools or education centers then they might have been interested. That, after all, is what the panelists were complaining gets too much coverage...

CJL

"Is our children learning?"
--George W. Bush

Update: Got a comment from a health policy expert who notes that medical research is as bad as education research. I have the feeling this will quickly become a "your field is worse than my field" discussion...

Update #2: Linked by This Week in Education.
Update #3: Linked by Inner Education for Inward Educators.
JProffit concludes: "I think a series profiling the school climates of an inner city school, a middle-class school, and affluent school, and an inner city charter could provide great discussion."

That's a fine idea, but a "series" sounds too serious. In addition to points I've already made about readers not really being interested in such topics and reporters not showing up where they've been invited:

1) Been there, covered that: I'm sure every newspaper can cite such a series that has previously been done. It could have been 10 or 20 years ago, but if they've done such a series and anyone at the paper with institutional memory argues that no one read it then, either, then they won't see the need to do another. Plus, haven't there already been books done by researchers and reporters visiting schools? Overall, such books praise those schools while adding some caveats.

2) Who's gonna pay for it? In an age of declining revenues and subscribers, newspapers don't seem to be that interested in a long series that take reporters off the daily beat.

3) Reverse the relationship: Educators need to understand reporters. How do newspapers make decisions about what to cover? That seems to be a mystery to educators (and, I'll add, probably a lot of reporters, too). A lot of educators and researchers, including those at the Brookings discussion that got this conversation started, seem to think that reporters and newspapers write stories based on the public interest and what it is that people want or need to read. Seems to make sense to outsiders, but what do the people working for newspapers think about that as they are putting out a daily paper?

12/3/09

Case Closed on Tiger

A friend of mine read my comment about the prospect of me being chased out of the house at 2 a.m. by a woman armed with a baseball bat. His comment: "So, instead of Casey at the Bat, it would be Casey Fleeing the Bat?"

* * *

Tiger Woods has paid his fine for being a bad driver. He should stop releasing statements admitting to anything, even if videos or pix get released. Better to have reporters shouting questions at him rather than feeding the media frenzy.

* * *

Yesterday I heard Charles Barkley recommending that Woods "be a man" and address the media. That's the same Charles Barkley who told police he was speeding because he was in a hurry to get a blowjob. As he explained to police, the reason he had run a stop sign: "You want the truth? I was gonna drive around the corner and get a blow job."

Barkley will say anything. It isn't surprising he would advise others to do the same.

A media person on TV this morning suggested Woods should quickly admit to everything, perhaps even hold a press conference. Of course a media person would want such a thing.

Woods should take a lesson from Mark Sanford, the governor of South Carolina who is barely holding onto his political career. So admitting transgressions will stop the media frenzy, right? Then who were those reporters flying south of the border to smoke the woman out?

* * *

A friend of mine keeps telling me that what Tiger Woods does in his marriage is not anyone's business. I agree with him. I have noticed, however, that my friend knows even more details about this case than I do. I am getting most of my Tiger Woods updates from him.

* * *

A female friend of mine says that Tiger Woods' wife should not have "gone ghetto" on him. Any woman who marries someone rich and famous like Tiger Woods should expect such a man to stray.

That sounds like a good position but I would just recommend that the couple agree on that in advance. I know that I would have married Tiger Woods and agreed in advance that he could cheat...

* * *

I'm in a three-way conversation about Tiger Woods.

Person A: The media should investigate Tiger Woods and report about his alleged affairs. This is yet another example of a cheating professional athlete/celebrity.

Person B: Not even the police should have asked Tiger Woods questions. It was his home, no one was complaining.

CJL: The police should at least knock on the door to ask questions when there is a chance of abuse or violence. But once it is determined that everyone is okay and no one wants to press charges, then the cops should move on (which, according to police, is what they usually want to do).

CJL