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Thread: The Masters

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Hot'Lanta... home of the Falcons!

    The Masters

    A friend called me on Saturday with a question:

    "Hey, you want 2 passes to the Master's tomorrow?"

    I was so dumbfounded it took me a full second to say, "YES!"

    It was awesome. We put our chairs down in the 6th row at 18, perfectly lined up with the pin, then we walked the course for a bit soaking in Amen corner and all the views. The Azaleas were not in bloom as much as I would like but it was still beautiful.

    We then began watching some of the play. I got to see Singh and Singh tee off at 1 and watched Tiger practice his putting for about ten minutes. Then it was off to the #2 green to watch for birdies and eagles at this early par 5. One really cool thing is that you don't really know what is going on until scores get posted on the many scoreboards around the course. Everyone was eager to see if Phil could make a run. We knew he had been 6-over to start the round. There was an incredible groan from the crowd when the scorboard posted him at +9 after one. One guy yelled, "you've got the 6 upside down!!" to the scoreboard operator. We watched the final 12-15 pairs come through #2 finishingh with Tiger. When he birdied to go to 3-over, he had the lead (with about 6 other guys at +4) and everyone was convinced it was all over. He would run away with it. We ran off to #7 to catch the leaders come to that hole.

    The green on #7 looks impossibly small when you stand right next to it. It is really elevated too, making shots into it all that much more tough. It also has so many little hills and undulations that I do not know how anyone makes a putt. The pin was placed so that if you missed the pin by even a foot or two to the left, your ball was rolling off the green. After seeing a ton of birdies and even a few eagles at 2, it was a very different story here. Everyone was pretty much playing for a par. After Tiger and Applebee were done, we ran off to the stands in between #11 and #12.

    I was eager to see #12, which may be my favorite hole at Augusta, but I was bummed to find out that you really cannot get very close to the green there. We saw some nice shots and watched Applebee pretty much end his tournament by hitting it in the water, then we ran off to #18.

    I was stunned that our chairs were still there just waiting for us to sit in them. We had to navigate our way through a massive crowd to reach the area where our chairs had been left. But once we got there, our view was amazing. Watching the scoreboard became a full-time occupation. The scoreboards are manual, not automated, and you can see when the operators are about to update someone's total. When they posted the "3" after Tiger eagled #13, the crowd went insane. People were jumping up and high fiving each other. It felt like we had witnessed it, even though we were doing nothing more than watching a big white sign with number on it. Sorta funny.

    The ending was, as you all know, not all that dramatic. Once Zach Johnson made that really nice chip/putt to save his par, we knew it was all over. folks kept on saying that Tiger could hole-out his approach, but that would have been one-in-a-thousand. I was bummed, not because Tiger lost but because I was hoping for some pressure packed putts at 18 with me just 20 of so feet away. The prospect of a 3 or 4 way playoff at 18 was very real much of the day and I was salivating at that!!

    Anyway, it was simply incredible. If you ever, ever, ever get the chance to visit Augusta National-- DO IT!!

    --Jason "I bought a vest for $70 and a $25 hat, but the food was all 1970s prices and really cheap" Evans

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Hot'Lanta... home of the Falcons!
    Oh, I totally forgot to say it, but the guy who got me the passes is the author of this blog on the economics of sports. Worth checking out as he has some interesting perspectives on sports and money.

    http://moneyplayers.typepad.com/

    -Jason

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Watching carolina Go To HELL!
    Quote Originally Posted by JasonEvans View Post
    A friend called me on Saturday with a question:

    "Hey, you want 2 passes to the Master's tomorrow?"

    I was so dumbfounded it took me a full second to say, "YES!"

    It was awesome. We put our chairs down in the 6th row at 18, perfectly lined up with the pin, then we walked the course for a bit soaking in Amen corner and all the views. The Azaleas were not in bloom as much as I would like but it was still beautiful.

    We then began watching some of the play. I got to see Singh and Singh tee off at 1 and watched Tiger practice his putting for about ten minutes. Then it was off to the #2 green to watch for birdies and eagles at this early par 5. One really cool thing is that you don't really know what is going on until scores get posted on the many scoreboards around the course. Everyone was eager to see if Phil could make a run. We knew he had been 6-over to start the round. There was an incredible groan from the crowd when the scorboard posted him at +9 after one. One guy yelled, "you've got the 6 upside down!!" to the scoreboard operator. We watched the final 12-15 pairs come through #2 finishingh with Tiger. When he birdied to go to 3-over, he had the lead (with about 6 other guys at +4) and everyone was convinced it was all over. He would run away with it. We ran off to #7 to catch the leaders come to that hole.

    The green on #7 looks impossibly small when you stand right next to it. It is really elevated too, making shots into it all that much more tough. It also has so many little hills and undulations that I do not know how anyone makes a putt. The pin was placed so that if you missed the pin by even a foot or two to the left, your ball was rolling off the green. After seeing a ton of birdies and even a few eagles at 2, it was a very different story here. Everyone was pretty much playing for a par. After Tiger and Applebee were done, we ran off to the stands in between #11 and #12.

    I was eager to see #12, which may be my favorite hole at Augusta, but I was bummed to find out that you really cannot get very close to the green there. We saw some nice shots and watched Applebee pretty much end his tournament by hitting it in the water, then we ran off to #18.

    I was stunned that our chairs were still there just waiting for us to sit in them. We had to navigate our way through a massive crowd to reach the area where our chairs had been left. But once we got there, our view was amazing. Watching the scoreboard became a full-time occupation. The scoreboards are manual, not automated, and you can see when the operators are about to update someone's total. When they posted the "3" after Tiger eagled #13, the crowd went insane. People were jumping up and high fiving each other. It felt like we had witnessed it, even though we were doing nothing more than watching a big white sign with number on it. Sorta funny.

    The ending was, as you all know, not all that dramatic. Once Zach Johnson made that really nice chip/putt to save his par, we knew it was all over. folks kept on saying that Tiger could hole-out his approach, but that would have been one-in-a-thousand. I was bummed, not because Tiger lost but because I was hoping for some pressure packed putts at 18 with me just 20 of so feet away. The prospect of a 3 or 4 way playoff at 18 was very real much of the day and I was salivating at that!!

    Anyway, it was simply incredible. If you ever, ever, ever get the chance to visit Augusta National-- DO IT!!

    --Jason "I bought a vest for $70 and a $25 hat, but the food was all 1970s prices and really cheap" Evans

    Jason, was this your first trip to Augusta? Every golf fan has got to go at least once. Unless you have been there, you don't know what color green is, or how green it can be.

    I've seen 4 rounds there - the Saturday and Sunday rounds in 1993 and 1994 (I traded Duke tickets to a couple of games for them.) I saw Bernhard Langer and Jose' Maria Ilostmyball win

    I was driving back from Boone yesterday afternoon and listened to the play by play on 850thebuzz. They had their mikes open at 18 when they posted Tiger's eagle - truly amazing.

    It would be a dream to get near the green on 11 or 12. The bleachers are behind the 12th tee, giving you a view of the 11th green at a 45 degree angle (and approach shots at a 90 degree angle), and look down the fairway of 12 towards the green. Yesterday's tee shots at 12 were 159 yards to the pin. Front fow of the bleachers are about 200 yards from the green.

    Your comment on how hilly the 7th green is can be said of the entire course. You don't get a sense of elevation on TV, and the whole course is very undulating, which really surprised me when I saw it. #10 must drop more than 50 - 75 feet from tee to bottom, and then back up to the green.

    Congrat to Zack for winning. His life is now changed forever.
    Ozzie, your paradigm of optimism!

    Go To Hell carolina, Go To Hell!
    9F 9F 9F
    http://www.EGLEW.com


  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    New Orleans
    I'm green with major envy. That's a pretty good friend who lays a couple of the toughest tickets in sports on you.

  5. #5
    Jason,
    Was that you who kept yelling "GET IN THE HOLE!" everytime Tiger hit the ball?

    Two things amazed me (as I was watching on tv). The first was Tiger breaking his club hitting the ball from behind the loblolly pine. Jeez, if I ever did that!! Just move the ball over a little bit to smack the ball. That wouldn't count against you...Ha ha!!

    And second, the clip that CBS kept showing on tv when Tiger began with his driver really hard and then a bird flew over and he STOPPED just beforre striking the ball! Jeez, how did he do that without breaking something?

    Tiger was clearly over thinking yesterday. Screaming at his caddy for not factoring in the wind correctly. Trying to go for it on 15 when a layup and bird would've been best. The eagle was fantastic on 13 though.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Brooklet, GA
    Congrats, Jason! You are hooked now. You'll be begging for tickets next year like a crack head trying to get a hit. haha

    My favorite spot on the course is the area between the number 2 green and 8th tee box. You can watch approaches and green play on 2, tee shots on 3, green play on 7, and tee shots on 8 by just walking around in a small area. I know Amen Corner gets a lot of pub, but for seeing lots of players without moving much, it's hard to beat that spot.

    I really hope you had a cheap pimento cheese sandwich while you were there. That's a requirement.

  7. #7
    Is the Pimento cheese sandwich a Georgia/Southern thing? My dad's from south Georgia and eats those things all the time, which I find just about the grossest thing ever!!! Never seen anyone else eat the stuff.

    Jason, was this your first live golf tournament, or have you been to other events before?

    I've never been to the masters, but hit up LPGA events every year, including the Michelob Open at Kingsmill, where my in-law's live. It's a blast watching Annika, Natalie Gulbis, Karrie, and all the Duke girls (I still think of Pressel as a Blue Devil even though she never set foot on campus). That said, it doesn't compare to a live team sport game, whether basketball, football, or soccer.

    I think golf is one of those sports I much prefer to play than watch.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Brooklet, GA
    It's definitely a Southern thing. And like a lot of Southern food, it was invented because it has a lot of nutritional punch for a low price and can be made with readily available, cheap ingredients. Who actually invented it is unknown, but I would bet that it was invented because someone didn't have any meat to put on a sandwich and had to make do with cheese, mayo, and bread. That packaged stuff in the grocery store is okay in a pinch, I guess, but you have to try the real stuff sometime. You might be surprised.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Arlington, VA
    Jason, your description was right out of my parents' mouth. They were there on Sunday and called me from the car on the way home about the pimento cheese sandwiches, the fairly cheap food, hills, and the chairs on the 18th green. As a big time golf fan and avid player, the Masters is on my list of things to do before I die. Thanks for the details!

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Hot'Lanta... home of the Falcons!
    Quote Originally Posted by jacone21 View Post
    It's definitely a Southern thing. And like a lot of Southern food, it was invented because it has a lot of nutritional punch for a low price and can be made with readily available, cheap ingredients. Who actually invented it is unknown, but I would bet that it was invented because someone didn't have any meat to put on a sandwich and had to make do with cheese, mayo, and bread. That packaged stuff in the grocery store is okay in a pinch, I guess, but you have to try the real stuff sometime. You might be surprised.
    I don't eat cheese so, needlesstosay, I did not eat one of those foul-looking sandwiches. I went for the BBQ sandwich.

    I have been to other golf tournaments and this one just felt more exciting for obvious reasons. Still, watching a golf tournament at the site is so different from watching it on TV. Being on location means you miss 90% of what matters and what determines the winner. But, it means you get to soak up an ambiance and tension/excitement that TV can never hope to capture.

    But, moreso than any other sporting event, being there and watching it on TV are completely foreign experiences. It is totally different from, say, being at a tennis match or a basketball game.

    -Jason "I don't really play golf, but I enjoy watching it live and on TV" Evans

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