Thursday, April 5, 2012

The Masters

In many ways the Masters Golf Tournament is a rite of spring. The course is a gardener's paradise. The azaleas are in bloom. The fairways at Augusta National Golf Club are manicured to perfection and the greens pristine and grass cut to the tightness of an undulating pool table.

I love watching the Masters and I always try to arrange my schedule to make sure I am free for the four days of play.

Golf to me is the quintessential game. Each player is his own team. (I would have said his or her own team, but the Masters as yet does not allow women to be members or to be invited to the this masculine rite of spring.)

Each player is basically his own referee, his own judge and if a foul is committed either accidentally or otherwise, the player calls it on himself. If a golfer makes millions it is because of his individual talent. 

What a game.

The rules to a non-golfer may seem strict and silly and in some ways they are, but every professional plays by the rules.

It is the only sport where the spectators are required to be silent for the players to concentrate and score. I suppose chess comes close, but chess is a competition between two people, not a field of 99 other professionals.

Thursday will winnow some players and Friday many others. Saturday and Sunday both the lucky and the cream will compete for the coveted green jacket.

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