“How my dick ta’te?” –Tiger Woods (GQ, 1997)
There is an old Lil’ Rascals joke. Darla, Spanky, and Buckwheat are learning new words. The assignment asks them to use each word in a sentence. Darla and Spanky, two of the white characters get the words love and respect. Buckwheat, the sole black character gets the word dictate and in his sentence he asks, “How my dick ta’te?” In 1997, while interviewing with GQ magazine, a then 21 year old Tiger Woods told this joke to a group of women. This month, GQ re-released the interview in response to the current allegations of infidelity against Tiger Woods. They. Saw. This. Coming.
While the impact of his infidelity remains unclear, one thing is obvious–Tiger Woods just got a whole lot blacker. After years of off-color commentary by golf opponents, race drafts and “Caublinasian” claims, Woods finally got caught just being black. I don’t dispute Tiger Woods’ claim to mixed-race heritage, but I am curious about when he decides to be only black. As evidenced in his text messages and in other parts of his GQ interview, Tiger uses his blackness to play up his sexuality. He also simultaneously questions stereotypes about black men as if he were an outsider. “What I can’t figure out, is why so many good-looking women hang around baseball and basketball. Is it because, you know, people always say that, like, black guys have big dicks?” (GQ, 1997)
Up until now, Tiger Woods has cashed in on the fact that he’s an “All American Boy”, an image that has relied heavily on his golf skills, his safe race politics, his Blonde wife, and his Buick. Beyond Tiger Woods getting caught with his pants down, he also got caught reppin’ “big black guys” while screwing a slew of white women. The once “All American” has now turned hyper-sexed black man. While the consequences remain to be seen, I wonder just how much of the fallout will be from Tiger’s sexual infidelity and how much of it will be a result of his claim to black identity?