Does Success = Winning?


Did Charlie Sheen teach us nothing?

“Winning” is back in the news again, but not thanks to everybody’s favorite TV hedonist. No, this time it’s in the form of a (supposedly) frequent refrain uttered by one Eldrick Tont Woods: “Winning takes care of everything.”

Does it sound familiar? It should if you’re a fan of golf or the man-god that re-invented it. Apparently Tiger Woods has used that particular phrase about winning regularly since (at least) 2009, though I assume it’s usually with regards to reporter questions about the….umm….shall we say “distractions” of his personal life. And it makes sense I guess, if it’s being used as a deflect of sorts for what Tiger sees as overly intrusive questioning.

Winning At All Costs?

But Nike just decided to use that quote in a Facebook/Twitter ad to cheer their recent champion on his latest win. They sent out a shot of Tiger sizing up a putt with the words “Winning takes care of everything” emblazoned across the front of it, and a Nike swoosh next to the word victory. Seriously, what in the hell is Nike thinking? Is this really the way they want to draw my attention back to Tiger and their brand?

An AP article quotes a Nike spokeswoman named Beth Gast as saying that that the ad references Wood’s mentality that he competes to win. “When asked about his goals such as getting back to number one, he has said consistently winning is the way to get there.  The statement references that sentiment and is a salute to his athletic performance.”

Enough Winnings Makes Cheating Ok

Right. “cause winning really does “take care of everything.” I’ll have to tell Chris and Megan and Matt that I now want my workout regime to include twice annual liposuction appointments. And steroids. LOTS of steroids. And purging. I will immediately begin carrying around a long feather so I can eat like an absolutely ravenous hog and then return the offending calories to the appropriate establishment in the privacy of their lovely washrooms. If it’s all about winning let’s go! Do these idiots really not get what their ad is actually saying? Nike just dumped Lance Armstrong and Oscar Pistorius for behavior unrelated to “winning.” Weren’t they winning enough?

As proof that the entire world is not completely insane the internet brought forth a near-immediate series of spoof ads featuring Lance Armstrong, Michael Vick, Oscar Pistorius and OJ Simpson, all tagged with the “winning takes care of everything” tagline. Sure does take care of everything, don’t it fellas?

From my earliest moments forward, my parents drummed into me that the end does not justify the means. That winning isn’t everything. That’s why I try even when I don’t want to, even when it’s hard. Because cheating isn’t right. Even still, as we get older, the temptation to temper such ideas gets larger and larger. “Of course winning isn’t everything but it is pretty friggen important so chill about all your sissy ethics issues and just win already, okay?” So why should I sweat it out at OPP when I could just get some fab surgery and lose the extra poundage? Maybe install some wicked ab or bicep inserts (not calves though – I have awesome calves). Now that’s some winning baby.

When I can’t even count on Nike to produce ads that better motivate my workout you know the world is upside down. Who woulda thought “Just Do It” actually meant arranging a harem of pornstars for oneself?  They should flog the all the Nike ad execs with their leftover Livestrong jump ropes.

Maybe the real problem here is that we did learn from Charlie Sheen’s example. Ol’ tiger blood himself seems to be doing pretty good these days. For one, he’s not dead. He’s still making millions and is well back to his hard partying ways, clearly none the wiser. So maybe winning does take care of everything. I wonder….do you think Nike might mind if I swiped a few sets of clothes and sneakers so that my son could look really cool on the tennis court? Maybe get me some swish workout gear to look great in on the rower? As long as we’re both winning it should be fine.

Jarrod [fb-like]



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