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Newz Forum: Golf: The MASTERS of Dramatization

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posted on Apr, 10 2005 @ 11:01 PM
About six hours ago I sat down to watch THE MASTERS. I knew I was going to write about the final round, I knew I was going to take notes along the way to do so. Here are my notes (bear in mind I watched the whole round, from the Nicklaus tribute through Tiger's green-jacketed fade-out grin):

1) Tiger blows snot.
2) Money ruins competition.

I've been sitting here trying to figure out why it is that six hours of television produced nothing more extensive than this, especially considering my topic was THE MASTERS, which is A TRADITION UNLIKE ANY OTHER.

Well, for starters, that slogan is ridiculous. Aren't all traditions a little different from each other? You probably dread your relatives' yearly visits a little differently than I do, etc. That slogan of theirs is one of those Clintonian twists of the English language that seems so meaningful when you don't think about it.

I mean, I could call my biography "Jack McDonald: A Life Unlike Any Other," and technically, I'm right. None of you went to my high school, then to my college, worked my job, and dislocated your right shoulder on August 1st, 1995 - but I did, so I'm UNLIKE ANY OTHER. Just like THE MASTERS.

It dawned on me once I'd thought about that slogan that there's nothing much different about the tournament except the media's handling of it. Look at the final scores - two guys in double digits, another dozen within 10 strokes or so…how is that UNLIKE ANY OTHER tournament? It's considered a major tournament, sure, and the flowers are much nicer than at, say, Desert Dubai. But in the end it's such a typical weekend - Singh, Mickelson, Woods? Stop the presses! - that it became clear to me today that the only real difference is in the presentation.

By the way, let me explain my two actual notes more in-depth, very quickly:

1) About the first thing the camera caught Woods doing was blowing snot on the ground on the practice green.
2) Early on, Vijay Singh blew up on the 4th hole or so with a double or triple bogey, and the announcers commented on how he was now out of contention, and thus likely phoning it in for the remainder. Like this was just fine. And you know what? Singh is a multi-millionaire, so for him, yeah, it is fine - it makes no difference to him if he finishes 10th, since he still gets to go back to the chateau later on and romp with his model-wife on a big pile of Ben Franklins. It shows, though, how out of step with normalcy the PGA is that Singh can finish 10th in a major, phone it in, and no one minds.

One of the reasons no one minds is that they're all much too busy patting each other on the back to pay attention. If Jim Nantz' ego increases any further between now and next year's MASTERS, he might burst into tears, right on the air, at his own beauty. The man should just go ahead and copyright the phrase "What a moment", because he's used it every other hole for the past 15 years. I've heard parrots with a wider vocabulary, but of course that's not the point.

Nantz is to journalism what Tiger is to being African-American; he's there for the same reason as the green jackets, the stilted post-tournament chairman speeches, and the maudlin annual video tributes to Nicklaus, Palmer, and Jones - to appeal to the upper-crust, self-important, mainly white audience that still takes interest in professional golf.

Which I am one of, at least on two of those three counts, and that ain't bad. If I had the money, I'd be upper-crust too, or at least I might pretend well enough. I used to watch "The Love Boat," after all, and the uniforms on Captain Stubing aren't markedly different from those chlorophyll-laden monstrosities Augusta pushes on its sweaty golfers every April. A review of "The Love Boat" on states that the show "proves the existence of Satan," which might be overstating things a bit, but not when it comes to THE MASTERS. Any organization who rewards its champions by having sexist rednecks hand them oddly-colored sport coats is clearly so far out to lunch that it can only be the work of Beelzebub.

And what does it say about me that I give up 75-degree Chicago Sundays every year to sit inside and watch it happen?

That's a question best left for another time, I think. To answer that question would require a level of introspection that you don't find in the telecasts of THE MASTERS. Did you notice, for example, that we didn't learn that Tiger's Dad is extremely ill until about 45 seconds before the end of the broadcast? That might've been a good thing to mention at the start of the day, since it would've alerted people that he's got bigger things to worry about than golf, and made his subsequent victory that much more impressive.

Instead we learned things like the names of Chris DiMarco's children, that David Duval once got heckled at the British Open, and that Mickelson and Singh got into a tea-time tiff over the length of the former's golf spikes. We were fortunate, though, to see the footage of them shaking hands, about as warmly as a divorced couple, at the beginning of their round. When asked about it afterward, Mickelson smilingly ripped the reporter for trying to inflame a minor rules debate into World War III.

Now THAT's where I wanted to hear Jim Nantz say, "WHAT A MOMENT."


posted on Apr, 11 2005 @ 12:56 PM
I saw parts of the masters with my roommates, and we were impressed to see how well tiger was playing, we missed the final holes becasue we got disracted and went onto other activites, there is no way i owuld be able to sit through a hole 18 holes of golf on tv.

Tiger earned it, its good to see him back at the top of his game after a couple of years off the radar, well not off the radar, but under it, not winning major championships, i should say.

Reporters on tv, won't say information until the very last minute, and also you will notice a lot of the times they give usless facts that mean nothing to what is going on, its just facts to make you go oooohh.


posted on Apr, 12 2005 @ 11:59 AM
I agree the commentators do seem to come out with the most useless bits of information. But its not just golf, i've heard them do it in most sports.

For example i was watching the horse racing recently and the commentator was doing the race and then he started waffling about how nice a windmill looked in the distance and what a lovely cottage was in a glen ect ect...

I was like WTF, i have money on this race, what damm position is my horse in... I still can't believe i was sitting there shaking my head and calling him a jackass.. as if he cared what i was thinking, sitting in his studio/box with his feet up, getting paid to talk about crap instead of what he was meant to be doing...

But sometimes and only sometimes they do come out with an interesting bit of information or fact....

As for the masters, at one stage i thought that Tiger had thrown it away with some wayward shots. You have to give credit to DiMarco, he stayed with him all the way. If his chip shot had gone in instead of hitting the rim and bouncing out there would have been a different champ. But Tiger got that bit of luck when he needed it the most and he did deserve to win it in the end...

posted on Apr, 12 2005 @ 12:04 PM
i saw sum of the masters it wurnt dat good this year

i hope its beta nxt time

posted on Apr, 14 2005 @ 03:44 AM
This is true, all sports get on like this. It is so the Sports commentators can cover their bases and pretend like they were picking the winner to win the whole time. I hate that crap. I have watched football or hockey games when they'll get on with all the sob stories of the team that was winning the series only for there to be a shift in who was winning and then they'd do the same damn thing for the other team. Pathetic.


posted on Apr, 14 2005 @ 11:59 AM
Pundits/Commentators are all mostly like this. Alot of them are ex-players of the chosen sport. Some of them was not even that great a player either and suddenly they become great experts. If they had shown some of what they talk, on the field, then maybe it wouldn't be so bad.

But even the great players who do it suddenly start to waffle rubbish. Maybe its old age creeping up on them and they are turning into blathering idiots.


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