Archive for the ‘The Masters’ Category

The Masters - Final RoundSpending all day – every day – immersed in sports is a bit like working at Pizza Hut and eating nothing but pizza. If one is unburdened by such matters as personal health and waistline size, pizza is a wonderful thing. Unfortunately, too much of a wonderful thing is likely to leave one no longer believing the wonderful thing to be all that wonderful.

Sports are really, really great. However, the more time you spend reading and writing about a topic, the greater the chance that its ugliness will be realized. This is why our focus often becomes embittered by all of the negative aspects present in sports. We forget why sports are so great to begin with. And so, that’s where The Week In Sports Happiness comes into play.

Every week, I’ll present the ten things that are making me happy from the world of sports. It might be a particular article, it could be a winning streak, it may even be an animated GIF. No matter what, it’s from sports, it made me feel good inside, and I hope it does the same for you.

Without further ado, sports the good:

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woodsdroppenaltyIn 1966, CBS commentator Jack Whitaker referred to a patron gallery at Augusta National Golf Club as a “mob.” He was banned from ever covering the Masters again. In 1994, Gary McCord, another CBS broadcaster, remarked that the 17th green was running so fast as to have possibly been “bikini-waxed” prior to the day’s round. He followed this nana-appalling comment by suggesting that “body bags” were located behind the green for players who missed approach shots. At the request of the club, he has not returned to broadcast a single Masters since.

This is the legacy of irreverence at the Masters. The three terms: mob, bikini-waxed and body bags. Bold expressions, each and every one of them.

We were reminded of this on Friday when NBC’s Bob Costas, sports commentary’s Audrey Hepburn, visited Dan Patrick’s radio show and expressed a no uncertain amount of disapproval with CBS’s coverage of the Masters. Specifically, his disdain was aimed at the network completely ignoring Augusta’s long and sad history of discrimination.

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GOLF-US-MASTERS-SCOTTAustralia’s Adam Scott won the 77th Masters last night in a playoff over Argentina’s Angel Cabrera. The victory gave Scott his first major championship win, but there was so much more to this win than an ugly green jacket and the right to serve up kangaroo meat at next year’s Champion’s Dinner. For Scott, this win helps him vanquish not only his own personal major championship demons, but also in the process, helps alleviate the pain felt by the tortured golf fans of his native Australia.

On a gloomy, rainy day on golf’s grandest stage, Scott stepped up to his ball in the middle of the 18th fairway at Augusta National, tied with Cabrera. While watching it, I couldn’t help but think of Greg Norman, Scott’s idol growing up and the poster boy for major championship defeat.

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amen_cornerA little over four years ago I took a puck to the jaw and found myself confined to the couch with metal threads running between my teeth, my mouth clamped shut and mind foggy with painkillers. I had been wired together, and I wasn’t going to be doing much for a while. I started writing.

When you first start your own blog, the freedom is overwhelming. Nobody is reading, nobody is editing, and your scope is vast. I chose to write about stand-up comedy, documentaries, and golf, an array of topics bound to attract roughly no one when mashed together potpourri-style. I sprinkled the blog with hockey for flavor (and the interest of some buddies), but I enjoyed nothing like I enjoyed writing about golf.

And lo, Why I Love The Masters was born.

I wrote it on February 23rd, 2009, to nobody, a stream-of-conscious pile of honesty that took me about ten minutes to hack out, and I’ve since linked to it approximately 11,000 times to explain a few of the things that make me love the Masters so much.

The Masters, Augusta National and all its layers aren’t perfect. But neither is the NCAA and March Madness. Neither is the NFL, neither is the NHL, and neither is Major League Baseball. Few things in life are. But for these four days in April, The Masters feels like it.

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The Masters - Preview Day 2On Thursday, April 11th, the first major championship of the 2013 golf season will begin, as the Masters will be played from the world famous Augusta National Golf Club in Georgia.

Many of golf’s memorable moments have taken place inside the hallowed grounds of Augusta National, and those who are fortunate enough to win the Masters have their place permanently etched into the fabric of the game. No matter what they do or don’t do from that moment on, they will always be known as a Masters champion.

There are so many factors that make up what’s special about the Masters, and I’ve put some of them together in the Fanatico A-Z Guide To The Masters.

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