Each day this week I hope to post a few of the random things I was able to hear or see with my very own eyes at the 2008 Masters. Which might then lead me on tangents that leave me confused, frustrated and wondering where I was. Basically the blog will read the same way I play most long par fours.
Craziest thing I saw at the Masters today: When I grabbed some napkins out of a napkin dispenser, the end of the next napkin left in the dispenser was sticking out, as I think they're designed to do. A concessions worker waited till I was done, then neatly tucked the end of the napkin back in.
Best Moment: On #9 of today's par-3 contest, Palmer knocks it inside 10 feet, which netted me a quarter from my friend Rob. Gary Player then knocks it inside him, which netted me fifty cents. Jack Nicklaus moves them both aside and sticks his shot to within a foot. I won a dollar but even better was able to witness the Nicklaus magic one more time.
Worst Moment: Immediately after knocking it close, Nicklaus turns to Player and they exchange a fist bump. What was most disturbing is that they looked completely natural doing it, as if they've been doing it for years. And for all I know, they have. I feel like I saw Jack doing it at last year's Presidents Cup, which didn't bother me as much since at least one of the fist bumpers was under 60. Either way, it's a sign that golf needs to start looking for a new celebratory hand motion. We've done the high-five, the low-five, even the occasional forearm bash. I'm going to start pushing what I'll call the "Stevie." It's what happened when Steve Williams tried to high-five Tiger after the unforgettable chip-in on 16 for birdie back in '05. It was awkward and uncoordinated, which is why I can only credit Stevie for things going so wrong.
Here's how to pull it off:
1) Make the other person think you're going for the standard high-five.
2) Right before impact, move your arm an extra two to three inches closer to the person's head.
3) Proceed to make contact with no more than one finger (preferably none) using the lead thumb of your open palm, then wrap the remainder of your hand around the back of their hand and grab onto wrist briefly before abandoning the effort altogether.
Confusion: Can someone who was watching the ESPN coverage of the par-3 contest explain to me why Ian Baker-Finch and Paul Azinger were allowed to play in it? I mean, they're both Major champs, but not Masters champs. My best guess is that they're broadcasters, but still...
Official Prediction: Tiger over Sergio.
Funniest Masters-related Link: http://augusta.craigslist.org/tix/629971771.html
Most Pathetic Masters-related Link: http://augusta.craigslist.org/tix/631006447.html
More thoughts coming Thursday... and yes, I really am sitting in a Denny's parking lot.