Friday, April 6, 2007

10 Things I Love About the Masters

No Augusta for me this year, and here are few of the things I'm missing...

10. The Tree—The huge oak behind the clubhouse where everyone who is anyone gathers is a neverending spectacle.

9. The marshalls—These fairway guardians are tuned out in white jumpsuits and yellow hard hats that have the number of hole they guard painted on the side in Master green. Hilarious.

8. Washington Rd.—Honky Tonk strip of roadway right outside Augusta National is the perfect antidote the club's notorious stuffiness.

7. The Media Center—Amphitheater with a live leaderboard and a wall of TVs with video feeds of every hole on the back nine.

6. The Chow—Peach Cobbler in the clubhouse, pulled-pork sammys, Krispy Kremes (gratis in the Media Center), sublime.

5. Driving Range—No matter how many times you've seen it, still amazing to watch a pro effortlessly pound balls to the horizon.

4. 16th Hole—During practice rounds rowdy fans convince players to try to skip the ball across the pond; rollicking.

3. The smell—Fresh cut grass, pine needles, an undercurrent of suntan lotion.

2. The roar—When something big happens that explosion of applause ricochets through the trees, instant adrenaline follows.

1. The Azeleas and Dogwoods—No words necessary.