Just some photos to check out. I am amazed at how many porta-johns there are here. But I guess that makes sense. You need to be able to find them, even when you're completely hammered. For me, I think either Friday or Saturday I'll be making the 16th hole my home for a good 5-6 hours and see what happens.
What a long week. I know I said I’d be sleeping in my car, but come on now: 5 nights? That being said, I think the best word for some of the experiences I had this week would be “serendipity.” Just a great experience, and I had forgotten how much I love match play. The course is ridiculously long at 7,800+ yards from the tips, and the greens are quite literally Jack being at his most sadistic. Congrats to Ian Poulter for winning the event, and congrats to me for being crowned King of Dove Mountain.
Some of the highlights:
1. Running into Kelly Tighlman, Peter Oosterhuis, and Nick Faldo at the bar
2. Seeing Tim Clark’s wife again and meeting Carlos, Sergio Garcia’s manager at IMG
3. Getting a free night at the Ritz, simply because Ernie Els lost
4. Running over 1,000 yards only to annoy Retief Goosen
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Thanks so much for your support, and remember, if you find yourself headed to a PGA Tour event, drop me a line and let me know.
What can I say about Pebble Beach and Spyglass Hill that hasn’t already been said? Both absolutely beautiful golf courses, the wind beats the crap out of you, and the views are breathtaking. They added the Shore Course at Monterey Peninsula Golf Club instead of Poppy Hills this year, and 80% of the course is completely exposed to the open ocean and elements. So yeah, players got frustrated.
Well, let’s get right to it. The highlights:
1. The Bill Murray experience
2. Talking with Tim Clark’s caddie and meeting Candace, Tim’s wife
3. Revealing the true Fran Quinn
4. Shaking Sean O’Hair out of his funk and being there for Paul Goydos on number 14 on Sunday
Not to put any pressure on myself, but I feel like this is my best e-book yet. You can purchase the e-book here, and I hope you enjoy it.
Your support is greatly appreciated.
The first two are from my drive on 101-N from Los Angeles to Salinas. The rest you can probably figure out. Stories to follow, of course, but the sunny photos below are from my newfound love: Spyglass Hill Golf Course. Oh...my...God.
I feel like I’m in limbo right now. I suppose this is bound to happen at the beginning of each week, traveling from one tour stop to the next. Figuring out where to go, catching up on writing, trying to plan for the following week, and whatever else I can think of to try and stay ahead of the game.
My main reason for posting is to try and get some help with brainstorming. I’m doing great with getting media credentials thus far, but the mother of all credentials—for the Masters—is just not in the cards. I got an e-mail back from one of the media people at Augusta today, saying they don’t support Universal Golf, as it is an online publication. I suppose that makes sense, what with their $2.50 pimento sandwiches and traditional approach to golf—meaning Hootie and the rest probably don’t think too highly of this Internet thingy. Then again, if they knew my real intentions for being on tour right now they’d probably have a sniper perched in the Crows Nest—potentially recruiting one of the amateur contenders for the task—with tranquilizer darts so when I try to sneak through the gate they can drop me quietly and wrap me up in green tissue paper, dispensing of me with some style.
But that doesn’t change the fact that I really want to go. I mean who wouldn’t? If everyone with a blog or any sort of online voice were to post something like this, asking for help or ideas as to how one might score tickets to the Masters, I guarantee there would probably be tons of comments from people saying: “Oh yeah? Why would I want to help you go when I can’t even go myself?”
So don’t take this post the wrong way. If nobody has any ideas for me—because let’s face it, who has $4,000+ to spend for a weekly pass—I have a plan B. It’s not the greatest plan, but, something tells me it would be freaking hilarious as a worst-case scenario.
Here’s the plan: if I can’t get into the Masters, I’m going to find a place to stay nearby—perhaps even in my tent—and buy a cheap bottle of bourbon. My only connection to Augusta, aside from being nearby, is that I will have a player list with me. I will then drink till my heart’s content, and imagine what will unfold each day at Augusta National, writing about my visions and ultimately determining who won the tournament—at least in my own head. I was fortunate enough to get a ticket to Sunday’s round last year, and so aside from having like 8 orgasms while walking around that place, I at least have an idea of the layout and who might excel in 2010. So although the piece would be…ahem...”out there”…the descriptions of the holes would at least be realistic. And wouldn’t that be funny if I ended up picking the winner through some brief moment of clarity?
But again, this is a worst-case scenario. I’d much rather be drinking caffeine and bouncing around the emerald green fairways of “The National.” Anyway, I hope everyone is doing well. I’ll check back soon.
I can’t believe I thought the traffic and roads in San Diego were the worst it could get. Los Angeles is a whole other animal, and you can’t help but wonder if the traffic ever stops or if anyone has a family at home that cares about them.
That being said, Hogan’s Alley was worth the struggle with parking every morning. Beautiful bunkers, great undulations on the greens, and everyone and their mother this past week said they’ve never seen the course in better condition. So, of course it had to rain. But this pre-1930s design held up extraordinarily well, and even though it rained all day on Friday, they never even thought about cancelling play. The drainage on the course is just too spectacular.
But congratulations to Steve Stricker—the funniest part of that being that when I saw him playing in the pro-am, I didn’t think he had a chance in hell of even making the cut.
Here are some of the highlights:
1. Parking war-stories with Geoff Shackleford and Jaime Diaz
2. Corey Pavin’s Assistant Captain announcement and red-velvet cupcakes
3. The Soap Opera that ensued with the catering people
4. Joining Tim Clark’s posse on the last day
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As always, your feedback is invaluable, so feel free to contact me.
While I was following Steve Stricker in the pro-am today, an absolutely ridiculous idea hit me: could I caddie in the pro-am each week?
I’ve caddied in a couple of pro-ams before, and I have to say, they are just about the easiest loop you can get. The amateur’s are just happy to be playing, and normally they’re asking the professional in the group for most of the yardages, most of the reads on the greens, and gravitate toward the professional for many of the conversations. So basically, you’re just walking and carrying the bag, and provided with only a few rare moments to showcase any of your caddying talent. Personally, when I was in my “hey-day” and caddying full time, I thought caddying in a pro-am was kind of a joke.
Plus, after training caddies and spending a day each week just driving out onto golf courses to critique the loopers and give the Caddie Manager’s reports about what was going on, I guess I’ve developed a super-critical eye. So many of the things I saw the caddies doing today annoyed the living crap out of me.
Estimated yardages. Walking slowly and lagging behind, so the players had to wait. Standing in sightlines on the greens. Noisy clubs.
These are the things that readily come to mind. But I really can’t take it too hard on these young lads. It’s not like they were trained, and they’re probably just as happy as the players to be walking the golf course.
But then it hit me: could I caddie in the pro-am each week? It would certainly help to put a few extra bucks in my pocket to keep me going. It would give me a detailed look at the golf course. I could write an old-school Jam Boy post about the experience, and that would help me get the writing juices flowing prior to the e-book composition during the tournament days. I mean sure, I’d pretty much be working double-duty, but it might just be crazy enough to work.
I asked one of the caddies today how he got into it, and he just said that a friend of his is great friends with the Starter here at Riviera. Well, perhaps I need to make a few phone calls / send a few e-mails and track down the decision-maker at each course. Maybe with a little homework, I can get out there too.
I still have to think about this, because so much of my schedule is up in the air right now, and there are times—as with my experience in the tent—where I might not be able to work a loop into my day, for reasons other writers probably don’t have to put up with. But I think it’s a good idea, and one that is certainly worth pursuing.
But I hope everyone is doing well. I’ll check back soon.
Torrey Pines is a place I feel every golfer should see for two reasons: to burn some of these extraordinary views into your memory, and to see how ridiculous the Torrey Pines South Course really is. It’s not just the 7,600+ yardage—it’s the poa annua greens, the rough, the uneven lies, and the unrelenting wind that I feel will encourage some golfers to quit the game forever.
Highlights from the event:
1. Running into Blake Moore, Steve Marino, Robert Allenby’s caddie and the “Greek Gods” of golf writing
2. Saying hello to Ian Baker-Finch and Peter Oosterhuis
3. Watching Michael Sim’s 62
4. Negotiating the crowds following Mickelson and Fowler on Sunday
As always, your support is greatly appreciated. And if you like what you read here, tell your friends. I’m finding that getting the word out about what I’m doing is more difficult than I originally anticipated. But I’m having a great time so far, and I hope you are too.
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