Which of these lines from his column from last week about how to spend a day at the Masters most loudly and embarrassingly screams "I WANT YOU TO KNOW HOW IMPORTANT I AM!!!"? Your call. I want to apologize in advance for alienating any of our seven readers who love the Masters. I actually enjoy golf quite a bit (despite the shit I give morons like Reilly for loving it) and I'll always watch Sunday at the Masters. As usual, some of this is just hating for hating's sake. I'm sure any of you who are huge golf fans would agree that Reilly is out of fucking control here.
Luck just French-kissed you. You've been handed a one-day ticket to Thursday at this year's Masters. But now you're freaking. You'll never get this chance again. What should you do? Where should you go?
Well, this will be my 25th Masters.
6:05 a.m. -- Wait! Leave your cell phone! Get caught with one on the course and you're banished for life. I know. I was standing on No. 1 once, watching Tiger Woods putt, when my phone rang in my pocket. Ring tone: "Fly Me to the Moon." Utter horror. Two Pinkerton guards took me roughly by the arms and escorted me toward the front gate. I was staring at a lifetime of standing outside the gate next to Gary McCord when I happened to see Augusta National chairman Billy Payne, whom I knew from his running of the 1996 Atlanta Olympics. "Billy! Save me!" And he did. But he's not going to save you.
Do you not know Billy Payne? Oh, pity. I certainly do. Like I was saying, Rick Reilly is a fucking asshole.
6:15 a.m. -- Park for free, like everybody else, in one of the 8,500 no-charge spaces that are really close.
What a breath of fresh air! Free parking! In a midsized city on the Georgia-South Carolina border, no less!
Once [your chair] is down, leave. Nobody will take it and nobody will sit in it. The whole deal runs on the honor system, and the Masters is nothing if not honorable.
Totally. Once you get past the rampant racism and sexism, the place is oozing honor and class. It was especially honorable when, in 1984, the tournament decided to start letting pros actually bring their own caddies, rather than forcing them to use the club's caddies who were, you guessed it, all black. And when I said 1984, I mean the 1984 that was 29 years ago.
9 a.m. -- Observe, for a moment, the most well-run sporting event in the world.
Holy hell. It's a fucking golf tournament. Let's see the geniuses that manage to somehow coordinate a slow-moving event with like 80 participants and a few thousand fans successfully put on an Olympics. And geez, much as I despise the NFL, those fuckers have "well-run" down to a science. Any sold out regular season game is a fuck of a lot harder to coordinate than a golf tournament.
And observe all of the stuff you don't see. No ads.
Yeah, I agree, sports are just SO much better to watch when you have to wait twenty fucking minutes for the scoreboard to change.
Just golf played on giant fairways and M.C. Escher greens in front of a lot of Southern women in big hats. Fabulous.
This is the guy who thinks baseball is slow and boring.
10:20 a.m. -- Now, as Jim Nantz would say,
Makes sense that one smarmy buttwipe would enjoy referencing another.
over to 16,
That would have been a non-horrible reference a mere five or six years ago.
For one thing, they're separated from the fans by 150 yards, so they can swear all they want. Certain players (cough, Tiger, cough) really like that.
Golf fans who perceive Tiger to be some kind of "bad boy" are just a bunch of tards. They really are.
d) the Eisenhower cabin, built in the 1950s to the exact standards of the Secret Service. I slept there once. It's not much.
No big deal.
A sitting room and six bedrooms with twin beds. There was a rather pedestrian painting on the wall above my bed. I had a hunch. I checked the signature in the corner. Yep. Painted by Eisenhower.
NO BIG DEAL.
The room on the corner is where the club's patron saint, Clifford Roberts, always stayed during the "toonamint."
I slept there once, too.
In the desk drawer, there was a little white pamphlet that listed the entire membership. My eyes bulged, but my host asked me not to publish it, so I didn't. The Masters is nothing if not honorable.
Augusta National is nothing if not interested in not pissing off its members, who enable it to do things like offer free parking.
The first time I met Jack Nicklaus was outside this door on Wednesday in 1986 and I had to ask him if he was broke.
Oh, have you not met Jack Nicklaus? I have. I even asked him a "hard-hitting" question that was actually quite a softball. Then I slept in the Eisenhower cabin for.... I believe it was... yes, it was the seventh time I slept there.
12:50 p.m. -- If you're really daring, try to sneak a peek at: a) one of America's finest wine cellars (I've seen it;
NOT THAT I'M BRAGGING
1:05 p.m. -- The waiter writes out the bill on a simple little check pad you could buy at Walgreen's for $1.99.
Isn't that uninteresting factoid proof of the greatness of the Masters?
Leap to get it, but the waiter is going to give you the stink eye if you give him anything but cash. Imagine: Augusta National hosts captains of finance and industry and yet if you're not staying on the property, they're not taking any chances with your Visa card.
Imagine: a place that wants to pretend like it's still 1935! It'll shock you to find out that it's located in the South.
2:40 p.m. -- See if you can find Bubba Watson on the course. You want to see what his caddie is wearing on the front of his white overalls: The number 1. It goes to the winner's caddie each year. Who says golf doesn't have jersey numbers?
3:45 p.m. -- Tired yet? Then go sit in your chair on 18. Savor the quaint tradition of a Masters member announcing the names of the players who are about to approach the green, without a microphone. Shake your head at a tournament with no hospitality tents and yet with hospitality coming out of its ears.