What might have happened in Tiger-Elin 're-nup'
EDITOR'S NOTE: This column has been retrieved from our archives. It was originally published December 15, 2009.
The Florida Highway Patrol has issued a $164 citation to Tiger Woods for careless driving, meaning the incident will cost Tiger roughly $80,000,164.
Suddenly Vanessa Bryant's $4 million diamond ring seems kinda chintzy.
Apparently Tiger's "transgressions" have brought about a hasty renegotiation of his prenuptial agreement with wife Elin Nordegren that will quadruple the originally agreed upon $20 million as long as she sticks it out for another couple of years. So how did the sides arrive at this new figure, roughly halfway between Kobe's bejeweled "my bad" and Michael Jordan's reported $150 million settlement with ex-wife Juanita?
Channeling the opening mediation scene from Wedding Crashers, we now try to piece together how that negotiation might have gone down. .
Tiger and his attorney sit on one side of the table in the family dining room, Elin and hers on the other. A mediator sits at the head of the table. You can cut the tension with a 1-iron.
Mediator: Okay, gang, let's get started. I am here to mediate. Like Rocco. (Nothing.) Rocco Mediate? Anyone? No? All right, uh, I believe Mr. Woods' attorney has an opening statement.
Tiger's attorney: What my client does for a living, what he does better than anyone else in the world, is by its very nature a monotonous occupation. Literally working for hours upon hours to replicate the exact same swing over and over. In his field, variety is not good. Metronomic consistency is what makes him the best. We do not feel it is reasonable to then ask him to enter into that same level of monotony in his personal life.
Mediator: Really? That's your opening move?
Ms. Nordegren's attorney: So, for the record, Mr. Woods views life with the mother of his children as "monotonous." Tedious, if you will. In light of this, we would ask that the original prenuptial agreement be augmented by $5 million.
Mediator: Yeah, that sounds about right. (Aside to Tiger and his attorney.) Word to the wise, monotonous and monogamous may share a Greek root, but you use them interchangeably at your own peril.
Ms. Nordegren's attorney: Furthermore, it has come to my client's attention that her husband's extra-marital dalliances began while she was pregnant, a violation of their marital vows so egregious we believe it merits an additional $10 million to the original agreement.
(Tiger whispers to his attorney.)
Tiger's attorney: If anything we see Ms. Nordegren's condition at the time of the indiscretion in question as exculpatory. Given that Ms. Nordegren was not, in fact, performing her connubial duties, we would ask that this request be denied.
(The mediator looks on in stunned disbelief.)
Mediator: So your contention is that while Ms. Nordegren was preoccupied with the gestation of the human being growing inside her she was neglectful in her other wifely obligations?
(Tiger and his attorney nod.)
Mediator: Yeah, I'm gonna go ahead and rule again for the mother on that one.
(The mediator is keeping a tally.)
Ms. Nordegren's attorney: In addition, we would ask for a second $10 million augmentation for the pain and humiliation caused by these salacious text messages and e-mails.
Tiger's attorney: (interjecting) Well, I think we can all agree that any pain and humiliation that resulted because of the publication of these private messages has been suffered by my client, not the plaintiff.
Ms. Nordegren's attorney: Would you like me to read them for the record?
(Tiger shakes his head.)
Tiger's attorney: Withdrawn.
Ms. Nordegren's attorney: Stepping back from the more prurient aspects of this negotiation for a moment, it has also become public knowledge — reported by the neighbor who discovered Mr. Woods lying beside the vehicle — that my client lives with a snorer. Anyone who has dealt with that particular misery would understand the sleepless hell Ms. Nordegren has endured for the last six years. We would set remuneration for this hardship at $5 million.
Tiger's attorney: My client has a medical condition.
Mediator: (to Tiger) Did you try that mouthpiece they advertise on TV?
(Tiger shakes his head. The mediator adds another $5 million to his tally.)
Ms. Nordegren's attorney: It has also come to our attention that Mr. Woods' paramours are being compensated for their silence. We think it only right that Ms. Nordegren receive five times what they are receiving. If you would be so good as to divulge that figure.
(Tiger whispers to his attorney. The attorney jots a figure on the mediator's legal pad. The mediator raises his eyebrows at the number.)
Ms. Nordegren's attorney: Now to the issue of contrition. My client maintains that when Mr. Woods spilled out of his vehicle his first words to her were, "You're still over-pronating your wrists on your follow-through." In light of this cavalier attitude and in an effort to arrive at a new figure that may truly make this philanderer sorry for his actions, we seek an additional $15 million to serve as a sincere apology.
(Tiger is preoccupied with his Blackberry, looks up, nods.)
Ms. Nordegren's attorney: And finally, my client is going to need $10 million in cash to shop herself out of this funk.
Tiger's attorney: But there are so many great sales this year.
Ms. Nordegren's attorney: Okay, $5 million to get her shop on.
(All parties nod in agreement. The mediator tallies.)
Mediator: Okay, so we've got 5, 10, 10, 5, 10, 15 and 5, plus the original 20, for a new total of $80 million.
(The parties rise, shake hands formally. For the first time, Elin speaks.)
Elin: But if I truly don't want to be with him and only agree to stay with him for the money, doesn't that make me a prostitute?
Mediator: Let's not get into semantics.