Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Magic 8 Ball or Real Insight???

Thanks to my pick of Angel Cabrera to win the US Open in 2007, I have acquired a reputation as some kind of prognosticator. How easily one correct pick just wipes out all of those wrong ones - hahaha. Anyway, I thought I would follow up the Cabrera thing with this little bit of trivia:

I bought a Buick LaCrosse this year. People have been commenting, not so positively, about Buick, Buick's connection to the PGA Tour, and, my personal pet peeve, how Buicks are for grandmas. Well, I found this little article that says Buick is going to concentrate their efforts on the mid-size market (that's the LaCrosse, not the Lucerne) for 2010.

So, apparently I predicted the future of Buick when I picked the LaCrosse.

I did read some news article about the Bailout that claimed the Lucerne was on the chopping block, but this article only says the Lucerne is approaching "the end of its life cycle".

New Year's Traditions Around the World

Have you ever wondered what kind of New Year's traditions people follow in Spain, Scotland, Brazil, or other countries? Well, here's a link to a website that features some New Year's Traditions from around the world. Odd, Italy isn't on the list and I know from reading romance novels that in Italy they wear red undies to bring in the New Year.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

ADT Skills Challenge, Day 2

This was exciting right down to the last shot. The very last one by Rocco almost went in, which would have stolen the last skill from the Normans and let Rocco and his caddie win the whole event. But, Rocco's shot hit the cup and just went by the hole a few feet.

The guys who played the best seemed to be Gregory Norman and Matt Achatz, the caddies (Norman's and Rocco's).

I really loved the interviews with the players and caddies. They were very cool and gave us a look into the relationship between player and caddie. We don't get to hear those stories or see them interact like this during the regular season.

A lot of people complain about these "silly season" events and how they just aren't interesting or fun to watch, or there's no money in them. Well, this was a very, very exciting event and if anyone had a problem with this one, then they just don't like golf and should switch to curling or something.

I would much rather watch this event 15 times a year than any tournament Tiger's playing in.

Global Warming At Work

Yesterday it was in the 70s here in West Virginia. It was sunny and beautiful for the 27th day of DECEMBER.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

ADT Skills Challenge, Day 1

The Skills challenge is on NBC this weekend. This time, the players are teaming up with their caddies. It was very, very nice watching Fred Couples in High Definition (courtesy of my new tv I bought in September). The highlight was the hole out that Rocco Mediate's caddie made to win one of the challenges. The only criticism I have is that we couldn't hear the players and caddies very well. NBC needed to turn up the volume on their mics.

Friday, December 26, 2008

The Royal Trophy

The full list of participants has been compiled for the Royal Trophy competition set to take place in a couple of weeks. This event pits the European Team against Asia.

Here's the list:

For Europe: Captain Jose Maria Olazabal (Subbing for Seve Ballesteros), Niclas Fasth, Nick Dougherty, Paul Lawrie, Oliver Wilson, Pablo Larrazabal, Soren Hansen, Johan Edfors, and Paul McGinley.

For Asia: Captain Joe Ozaki, Prayad Marksaeng, Charlie Wi, Hideto Tanihara, S. K. Ho, Thongchai Jaidee, Ryo Ishikawa, Liang Wenchong, and Toru Taniguchi.



I'm sure the Golf Channel would be airing this competition if not for the demand of its millions of viewers for more reruns of Caddyshack and Tiger Woods highlights.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Since I Have Some Free Time.....

Lady Golfer has been posting some comments on the blog lately so I thought I would feature her website since I have some time off from work. If you are in the market for women's golf apparel, equipment and accessories, check out EastCoastGolfSales.Com.

The Secret

A couple weeks ago, I read in Womans World Magazine their Diet of the Week - this one based on The Secret, a book featured on Oprah's show which basically says that the Physics Law of Attraction is in effect in all areas of a person's life. The idea behind the diet is that if you think of yourself as thin and healthy then you will attract those characteristics to you and you will become thin and healthy. One of the 'rules' of this whole theory is that if you say something like "I don't want to be fat" then the Law of Attraction will send you more of being fat because you're not thinking about being thin, you're thinking about being fat. The Universe doesn't recognize the negatives.

Why am I writing about this here? Because Nick Faldo and Johnny Miller have been saying this very thing when they commentate on golf coverage. What do they always say? "When a golfer doesn't want to hit the ball to the left because there's trouble there, the golfer will think 'don't hit it left' and the ball will invariably go left." Faldo is apparently a big believer in visualization and positive thinking. And this book, The Secret, is all about positive thinking and visualization.

There's a certain amount of truth to this that I can see and I haven't even begun trying any of the techniques. There's a guy at work who is Mr. Gloom and you know what? Gloom follows him everywhere. He's not happy and it's because he doesn't try to be. He expects bad things to happen and they do. There's a girl at work who fights with co-workers and then she wonders why her life is so stressful. She's feeding the fire, so to speak. She sends out these negative thoughts and that's what she gets back in return - others being negative with her.

Apparently, this book and a movie about it have been some kind of world wide phenomenon. I missed that since I don't watch Oprah. But the book is worth reading. It's hard to read because it's broken up with quotes from various experts intermixed with the author's own words. You kind of forget what the theme of each chapter is. It's the kind of book that you need to read a few times.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Christmas Around the World

Since golf is a world-wide sport, I thought I would find a website that describes how different countries celebrate Christmas. So, here's one at TheHolidayspot.com. Do you want to know how Angel Cabrera's homeland celebrates? Or Sergio's? How about Bernhard Langer's Germany or Lorena Ochoa's Mexico? Check out the website to find out more.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

New "Spotlight On" Player

I have finally decided on a player to spotlight in the upcoming year. Rory McIlroy. He's been playing steady for the last couple of years, and has just qualified for the Masters with his T3 at the South African Open. You can check out his website by clicking on his name over in the sidebar. Here's hoping he finally comes through with a win this year. He's been close too many times and needs to take that next step into the winner's circle.

Enough is Enough

As someone who can watch Robin Hood: Men in Tights over and over again, even I have to say enough already with the Caddyshack reruns on the Golf Channel. The Golf Channel has an opportunity to actually report on golf and air golf stuff - there is golf being played around the world and they could do all kinds of highlights shows for the 2008 seasons on the PGA, LPGA, Champions, Nationwide, European PGA Tours etc, but instead they keep showing this really old, and probably not quite as funny as it used to be movie. Lazy. Just plain lazy.

I guess they think the average viewer is dumb enough to think that the whole of golf is either a Tiger Woods highlight show or Caddyshack (and with Tiger being out most of the year, they are left with Caddyshack). And if they want to say that the economic crisis is hindering their operations - well, if they produce a good product, people will spend the money. Back to that laziness thing.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

QVC

Why is the subject of this post "QVC"? Because once NBC started lavishing oh so much praise on Anthony Kim and talking repeatedly about the possibility of interviewing Tiger and reliving the 'incredible' US Open, I turned the tv over to QVC. So much for trying to watch some golf this weekend. Oh well, there's still the South African Open going on. Lee Westwood is in the lead, I think, going in to the final round.

The Huggy Awards 2008

John Huggan, some guy who apparently writes for something called Scotland on Sunday has published his list of the best and worst of the golfing year. Some things I don't agree with, and some I do. Some, I find very funny. His Alive and Kicking Award for Self Importance is pretty funny (and quite possibly accurate). You all should check out the list by clicking HERE.

This Should Have Been On the Golf Channel

Over in Spain, at Sergio's home course, there was a golf competition that included members of the four main tours over there - the European PGA Tour, the European Seniors Tour, the Challenge Tour and Peugot-Loewe National Tour. Some of the participants were: Sergio, Jose Maria Olazabal, Alvaro Quiros, Jose Manuel Lara, Pablo Larrazabal, Alejandro Canizares, Gonzalo Fernandez-Castano, Ignacio Garrido, Sergio's father, Jose Maria Canizares, Jose Rivero, Antonio Garrido, Carlos Rodiles, Santiago Luna among other great players.

You can click HERE to read a review of the event.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

From O'Hern's lips to Tournament Organizers Ears

Nick O'Hern spoke out after the Australian tournaments and stated that one of the biggest problems with gallery behavior is alcohol. I wholeheartedly agree. When I go to the Bridgestone Invitational and see all of those people drinking, it just makes me wonder at how much they usually drink if what they consume at the tournament doesn't make them falling down drunk. I'm glad someone is speaking out on this issue and I hope he doesn't suffer from any kind of backlash because of it. You can read an article about O'Hern's comments by clicking HERE.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Hats?

If anyone knows the story behind Brad Faxon's and Scott McCarron's chef hats at the Shootout today, please post it with a comment. I did a google search on it a few hours ago and didn't find anything.

It was good of Chris DiMarco to finish playing today even though his partner, Fred Funk, had to withdraw due to knee problems. Ian Baker-Finch stepped in for Funk. I'm sure DiMarco was trying to work on his game, but it was good for the fans to see him finish up and good for the charities involved. FYI - I made my prediction about Fred Funk before finding out that he has a bad knee. Even with a good knee, I don't think he'd be a factor on the Champions Tour in 2009. Shall I offer up a replacement for my prediction? How about Loren Roberts?

A scolding to the networks for airing both the Wendy's Three Tour Challenge and the Shootout at the same time. I'm looking forward to the ADT Skills Challenge coming up in a couple of weeks. I think the Golf Channel already announced the winners a while back - a scolding to them too. But it will be another chance for me to see Fred Couples so the spoiled ending won't matter much.

Friday, December 12, 2008

An Upcoming Anniversary

This weekend will mark an anniversary for me. It will be the 7th anniversary of my 29th year. In other words, I have a birthday coming up. I certainly don't feel as old as I'm going to be. In my mind I still think of myself as a 20-something. More than anything, it's time for the annual "Share Your Birthday with Jesus" dual purpose party and gift. I try to make sure I get a separate little celebration for the birthday and a separate gift. I really feel for all of the people born in December.

The Royal Trophy

The Royal Trophy - a team event pitting the European Tour against the best of Asia will be taking place in January. Joe Ozaki captains the Asian team and Jose Maria Olazabal will be subbing for Seve Ballesteros as the European Team captain. The latest news is that Olazabal has picked Oliver Wilson for his team. Wilson joins Paul McGinley who was selected the other day.

The official website can be found HERE. I checked and the team listings weren't posted yet. Hopefully they will be soon.

And Now for Something A Little Bit Different....

Lately, my blog has been mostly a Seve-Jose Maria update fest. So, I thought I would just do a google news search on 'golf' and see what pops up.

I found this article about a golf medal from a country club in Texas that surfaced in the UK. It is being auctioned off for charity. Why did I find it interesting? According to the article, there's a goat or gazelle stamped on one side of the medal. I'm thinking it's a goat. There aren't too many gazelles running around in Texas.

The Merrill Lynch Shootout is going on this weekend and after round 1, I think Jeff Sluman and Nick Price are in the lead. The folks I'm interested in watching are Brad Faxon and Scott McCarron, Ian Poulter and Graham McDowell, Zach Johnson and Scott Verplank, and Fred Couples. I can't get excited about Stewart Cink (Couples' partner). For those of you who care, Boo Weekley and JB Holmes are paired together and Greg Norman and Camilo Villegas are paired together.

Annika Sorenstam is leading after two rounds at the Dubai Ladies Masters.

At the Alfred Dunhill Championship in South Africa, Len Mattiace, Robert Rock and Oskar Henningsson are tied for the lead after two rounds.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

2009 Predictions

The Armchair Golfer asked me in one of the previous posts if I had any predictions for the upcoming year. I haven't really taken the time to contemplate the next golfing year. But I did jot down a few things I can post here. If I end up right at least 50% of the time, I might have to start buying lottery tickets again.

1. Sergio will fade in 2009 and not do nearly as well as he did in 2008. That seems to be a pattern for him. He'll do well for a while and then it's like he starts thinking about it and putting a lot of emphasis on it and he starts playing poorly.

2. Michelle Wie won't win. I still think that she needs to make more of an effort to take golf seriously. I've said recently that she should give up school and focus on golf. I think she will only win if she does this. She can't play one tournament or two and then go back to school. At least Tiger separated his golf from his education.

3. Greg Norman misses the cut at the Masters. I think he's going to take it too seriously and his usual final round troubles will show up on Friday. Plus the course has changed quite a bit over the years.

4. The Race for the Charles Schwab Cup will be more exciting to watch than the newly-revamped Fed Ex Cup (Again).

5. Fred Funk will still be in a funk and not be a factor on the Champions Tour in 2009.

6. Padraig Harrington will disappoint in his performance at the Majors. 2008 was magical, but after the US PGA, he didn't do anything. I think this burnout will continue through 2009.

7. Americans won't play a major part in the Race to Dubai. Despite all of the talk a few weeks ago about who from the US PGA tour will be joining the European Tour in order to be eligible for the Race to Dubai, I don't think the American players will be a factor. That's too much travel and too much culture shock for them.

8. Adam Scott's biggest competition will be with David Feherty for the Most Accident Prone Award.

9. Camilo Villegas will break the hearts of millions of women when he brings his girlfriend out into the public. Probably the sister of some friend of his from back home in Colombia.

10. Lorena Ochoa won't win as often as she did in 2008. I think she's starting to get a little tired of the hard work it takes to get to #1 and stay there. She's been going at this pace for a couple of years now. It's time for her to slack a little.

Most of these are negative predictions. I think it's easier to say what won't happen as opposed to what will. And besides, if I'm wrong, then it's good for golf. Mostly. #9 comes from my hope that Camilo won't start dating some actress, model or other celebrated beauty. And I will reiterate my own personal philosophy on relationships: Don't get married until you're 30. People don't know who they are or what they want out of life when they are young.

Pavin Officially Announced as Ryder Cup Captain

Corey Pavin was officially named US Ryder Cup captain for 2010 today. Pavin is a good choice and I'm glad the PGA didn't just take the easy way out and pick Azinger again. I like to see everyone get a turn (as you might imagine since I always complain about how biased the golf coverage is on tv). I don't think Pavin will be telling crowds to boo the Europeans like Azinger reportedly/allegedly did at Valhalla. According to This Link, Pavin *joked* that he'd asked for 12 picks for the 2010 team but that his request had been rejected. While I like the idea of a points system picking most of the team, I have to say that if the US captain could get rid of the ones who are always the top 2 or 3, the US might manage to field a very attractive team, competition-wise.

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Seve Ballesteros Released

Seve was released from the hospital today after an extensive stay while getting treatment for a brain tumor. Click Here for a new article. You can also go to Seve's website for some comments from him.

Monday, December 08, 2008

A New Task for Olazabal

Jose Maria Olazabal will be captaining the European team for next month's Royal Trophy competition. Jose Maria will be stepping in for Seve while he recovers from his multiple medical procedures pertaining to his brain tumor. You can read the article from the European Tour website by clicking HERE.

Sunday, December 07, 2008

Wie Gets A Tour Card

Michelle Wie earned a 2009 LPGA Tour Card after completing Q School today. If she can treat it seriously and keep her mind on her game, maybe she can be sucessful out there. I still say she needs to drop out of school if she wants to play golf. It's been clear in her efforts this year that dividing her time isn't working for her. She could probably due with limiting the Team Wie crap. They seem to me to be a big distraction. At least the media focuses on them a lot.

Friday, December 05, 2008

Jose Maria's 2009

I read on Rotoworld.com that Jose Maria Olazabal has apparently been granted a major medical extension on the PGA Tour for 2009. Of course this news is listed under a heading of "Fantasy Golf Breaking News" so I don't know if this is fantasy news for the fantasy golf world or if it's a real news item. I haven't been watching the Golf Channel so I can't tell you if they've been reporting on it.

Whatever the news happens to be, I just hope I will get to see him play more in 2009, either on tv or in person.

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Another Surgery for Seve

Seve Ballesteros had to have more fluid drained from his brain, claim internet reports today. This is the fourth procedure performed since he entered the hospital back in October. He is in stable condition and hopefully, will improve.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

KJ Choi Wins the Skins Game

I watched the second half of the Skins Game today. I missed it yesterday because I had no idea what channel it was on or when it was on. Anyway, Choi won it on the last hole. I was happy because of my "anyone but Ames" opinion. I thought it was very funny how interested Phil Mickelson was in the prize packages that LG offered for Eagles and Closest to the Pin contests. Some people have been commenting on how the money hasn't increased in the Skins game even though purses on the PGA Tour have skyrocketed. Well, the Skins game isn't about a bunch of money. It's about enough money to make things interesting and having a good time. I don't want to see the money increase a lot for the Skins game. It would change the very nature of the event from 'a good time was had by all' to 'cut-throat'.

Out of Nowhere

Sweden came from out of nowhere to win the World Cup. They fired a 63 in the final round to pass Spain, who shot 70, and Australia, who shot 76.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

World Cup, Round Three

I believe Spain is tied at the top with Australia going into the final round.

One of the announcers calling the action on round three referred to one of the teams as 'a couple'. Yes, technically, there are two of them, but no one wants to refer to any two golfers paired together as a couple.

Friday, November 28, 2008

LG Skins Game

The Skins Game is on this weekend. I don't know how exciting it's going to be. To me, if Fred Couples isn't there, then it would be hard for me to watch it. And unfortunately, he isn't there this time. This time, the competitors are Phil Mickelson, Stephen Ames, KJ Choi, and Rocco Mediate. I'm sure there will be a lot of bantering between everyone except Choi so if you're into listening in to their conversations, it will be a hoot. Personally, I hope anyone but Stephen Ames wins. As I think about it more, I'd like to see Rocco win so the media can talk about something other than his loss at the US Open. He'd probably like for the media to talk about something other than that too.

Australian Masters

I haven't reported on the Australian Masters yet. Tim Clark's in the lead and it's a really sunny and pretty place down there. That's about all I can report because I haven't been watching it. Maybe I can see some more of it this weekend. Yesterday was Thanksgiving and I was cooking and today was a shopping day.

World Cup Round 2

Spain is in the lead after two rounds of the World Cup in China. Yippee!!!!! Miguel Angel Jimenez and Pablo Larrazabal are a combined 17 under par and have a four shot lead over Germany and Australia. Hopefully they can continue this good play and win the event. Sure, this would probably be counted in 2009 but it's still 2008 for the rest of us and a win here would be another remarkable achievement for Spain this year - along with Spain winning the Davis Cup in Tennis, Carlos Sastre winning the Tour de France, and of course Sergio's Players Championship win. I don't follow soccer, but I'm sure some Spanish team did something great in that sport this year.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

World Cup Round 1

The World Cup is going on in China again, at the Mission Hills course designed by Jose Maria Olazabal. There are a couple of curious results after round 1. England, represented by Ian Poulter and Ross Fisher, is way down on the list at a tie for 20th place. South Africa (Rory Sabbatini and Richard Sterne) and Italy (The Molinari brothers) are tied for 26th out of 28 entrants. I would have thought that as often as the Molinaris play together that they would have done better.

Some results after Day 1:

Germany -10 (Kaymer and Cejka)
USA T3 (Curtis and Snedeker)
Spain T3 (Jimenez and Larrazabal)
Denmark T6 (Soren and Anders Hansen)
Ireland T6 (McDowell and McGinley)
Sweden T6 (Karlsson and Stenson)
India T12 (Randhawa and Jeev Milkha Singh)
France T16 (Bourdy and Havret)
England T20 (Fisher and Poulter)
Italy T26 (Molinaris)
South Africa T26 (Sabbatini and Sterne)

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Notes on the Hong Kong Open

I didn't watch this since I was watching Spain win the Davis Cup, but here are some results that I was interested in:

Lin Wen-Tang of Taiwan won the event.
Rory McIlroy finished T2
Pablo Larrazabal T4
Oliver Wilson T6
Bernhard Langer T6
Miguel Angel Jimenez T24
Jose Manuel Lara T29
Jose Maria Olazabal T70 - Even par.

I haven't found anything on the web yet that might let us know how well Jose Maria's feeling as he comes back from illness/injury. Earlier in the week, I read he said he had some back pain and shoulder pain, I think. I hope he continues to improve.

Olazabal's Perspective

I found this little article about Jose Maria's perspective on Seve's recovery. Reportedly, Jose Maria has been in touch with the family and believes Seve is doing very well. Check out the article for yourself.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Not Watching Golf This Weekend

Unfortunately for Oliver Wilson, who is doing very well in Hong Kong this week, I am not able to watch him play. The Tennis channel has decided to air the Davis Cup final between Spain and Argentina at the same time. I have to watch Feliciano Lopez and David Ferrer. Nadal is home with tendonitis.

If the PGA Tour would like to make some extra money, they could put together a calendar of their star players like the ATP Tennis Tour does. Granted, the ATP's pictures are sometimes of the players without their shirts on, but I would be more than happy to buy a golf calendar of the players fully clothed. Sergio is his Sunday all -black outfit is really nice looking. Camilo in anything he wears is also something nice to look at.

Having the Cake and Eating it Too

It seems this is the Media's main goal as it pertains the the ADT Championship and Annika's last tournament. On the one hand, the media was all up in arms because Annika's name came up for random drug testing again, two weeks after her last test. Presumably because they thought that the second round was Annika's last round and she was done - the test would be pointless because they wouldn't be suspending her if by some miniscule chance the test came back positive. On the other hand, Brian Hammonds and Dottie Pepper were on air after Annika finished the second round claiming that she might not be done - that the cutline could go high enough to include Annika in a playoff. So, the media both wanted the meaty story of Annika being asked to take a drug test after finishing her last round ever on the LPGA tour AND the story of Annika making it into a playoff (in which case the drug test might not be so pointless).

It was ridiculous.

The drug testing story wouldn't have been a story if Annika and her 'camp', 'team', or whatever they want to be called didn't stir up a lot of controversy over nothing. This last hurrah for Annika could have been a moment to treasure, one last, touching memory for all of the fans of golf to carry with them for years to come. But instead, we are going to remember Annika's fiance's outrage over the test. That's the real shame of the ADT's round two.

As for the randomness of life - I've gotten picked for jury duty twice in my life and there are many people in my county who've never been selected for jury duty.

As someone famous once said, "Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar."

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

A Good Summary of the Year

I found this article that points out a few things about the PGA Tour year end awards. This article points out a few things that the average viewer (like me) may not have picked up on by watching the tour this year. For instance, did you know Andres Romero (Rookie of the Year nominee) finished in the top 10 in two majors and made the cut in all four? According to the article, Romero was the only rookie to make the cut in all four. The article also talks about Comeback Player of the Year, which I would give to Dudley Hart after reading this. There's some Sergio talk in the article as well and a mention of Kevin Sutherland's good year.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Seve News!

Seve Ballesteros has been moved out of intensive care. This is great news. Doctors caution that he still has a lot of work to do and will still be undergoing therapy and residing in the hospital for a while yet.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Ian Poulter Had a Point

When Poulter pulled out of the Singapore Open citing the belief that if he played poorly, it would affect his world ranking, I thought it was a sad commentary on how the world rankings system works. Well, it turns out Poulter may have had a point. Last week, the distance between Sergio (8.68) and Phil (8.15) was just .53 of a point. This week, after Phil had a top ten finish at the Singapore Open, the distance is .64 between he (7.95) and Sergio (8.59). I don't know what it would have been if Phil hadn't played, but it must be disappointing to think that a top 10 wasn't good enough to gain any ground on the guy in front of him.

Of course for about 522 weeks, the guy in front of him has been Tiger. So, maybe Phil's used to this.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Hong Kong Open

The Hong Kong Open is the next event on the European PGA Tour. Many stars will be participating, like Nick Faldo, Bernhard Langer, Graeme McDowell, Miguel Angel Jimenez, Rory Sabbatini, and of course, Jose Maria Olazabal, who is making his return to full time golf after an extended illness. The Hong Kong Open is this week. Tune in to the Golf Channel to find out the times they will be showing the coverage.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Seve Update

Reports claim Seve could be moved out of intensive care next week as he continues to improve after his third surgery to address his brain tumor. Hopefully, we will continue to receive these really great news updates on Seve.

I Guess It's My Turn

The weather forecast for my area next week calls for snow. Yuck. Some other bloggers have already experienced this plague and now it's going to be my turn. One of these days, I'm going to have to move to Hawaii or some other warm sunny spot.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

A Nearly Non-Sergio Post

As was pointed out on the Hooked on Golf Blog, there have been many Sergio's #2 in the World posts on golf blogs and news sites lately. So, in an effort to demonstrate a bit of variety, I'll post about something else. The new issue of Golf Magazine arrived at my house earlier in the week. In this issue is David Feherty's Golden Ferret awards. As usual, David gives Tiger just about every award he can. But some other awards went to other players. For instance: Best Haute Couture Ferret goes to Camilo Villegas. Stupidest Comment Ferret went to Bobby Clampett for saying "The wind is blowing from 10 past three." The Abe Lincoln Ferret went to Woody Austin and amateur Michael Thompson who won it for calling a penalty on himself during the Masters. Even Feherty's dog, Ziggy the beagle, won a Ferret award for being the slowest player. The top Ferret Award, Le Ferret D'or, went to Camilo Villegas.

Other things to check out in this issue: an Interview with Robert Allenby and an interview with Hunter Mahan, and a cool picture of the underside of Camilo Villegas when he's down on the green in his spiderman green-reading pose.

I'm thinking I might have to do some kind of year end awards thing. Unfortunately, that would require some effort and I don't know if I want to put that kind of effort into that when I haven't even watched those first two rounds of the Madrid Masters that Jose Maria played in yet.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Sergio Wins the Vardon Trophy

Sergio had the lowest adjusted scoring average on the US Tour this year. I don't know how or why they adjust it, but that's what the article says. You can read it HERE. It also talks about Padraig Harrington winning the Player of the Year award. Sergio is the first from Spain to win this award and the first from Europe since 1937. Go Sergio!

Monday, November 10, 2008

Other Golf News

After making a separate entry to celebrate Sergio's victory, I decided to do this post for the rest of the golf news. Davis Love captured his 20th career tour win at the Disney event. He gets a lifetime exemption on the PGA Tour. Tommy "Two Gloves" Gainey almost won the event himself. He was ranked, I believe, 228 on the money list and moved up to 147 with his second place finish there. So, he will have conditional status on the PGA tour next year. I try to think of Tommy Gainey in a neutral way even though he was on the Big Break and the Golf Channel likes to take credit for everything he's ever done. I'm not a fan of the Big Break and I'm trying my best to not hold that against Gainey.

Nationwide Tour: They finished up this weekend. There were some stories there to keep your interest. I just wanted to find out who won the Caddie/Player contest that the Golf Channel was holding. It ended up being Colt Knost and his caddie. Knost, by the way, did secure his tour card.

Still, the biggest story for me these last few weeks was the Jeff Overton story - playing right after having his appendix out. He finished in the top 125 so he's fine for next year.

A media criticism: The Golf Channel was reporting on Erik Compton and how he was using a golf cart for this event. They said "the tour 'allowed' Compton to use the cart." As if the tour officials were doing this out of the kindness of their hearts. Not even close. They pretty much have to allow disabled people to use carts thanks to the Casey Martin case. I still don't understand how anyone could be against the use of carts for some of these people. It was reported that Casey Martin's condition could eventually lead to amputation of his leg. And no one wants to see Compton blow out his brand new heart. (Sarcasm warning) Yeah, I can see how giving these guys a cart can make them soar up the leaderboard and win every event they play. Isn't that how it went for Martin? Oh wait, no it isn't. Gee there must be something else to this game of golf other than walking. The very fact that people have to practically beg and plead and nearly die before they get a cart is so ridiculous. The cart isn't going to give these people an unfair advantage. It's the same thing for them that the wrapped up arm was for Vijay Singh during the Fed Ex cup playoffs. There are allowances made for golfers every time you turn around. Left handed players get equipment made just for them. Players who can't hit the ball a long way get longer shafts for their clubs. People who hit the ball a long way get hybrid clubs to help them power the ball out of the rough they always find themselves in. Golfers with bad backs and knees get braces and wraps to wear. And let's not leave out repeated laser eye surgeries.

Sergio to Number 2 in the World!!!!!

Sergio Garcia won the HSBC Champions tournament in China to move to #2 in the world. Yay!!!! That's three wins in a calendar year for Sergio and, more importantly, a win as a result of a playoff. Why is that important? Think back to all of the playoffs he lost this year. He was able to come out on top in a playoff finally and that should be important for his confidence.

I don't know how long he will be #2 in the World. Phil's playing this week in Singapore but I don't think Sergio is.

Thursday, November 06, 2008

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

A Little Maintenance

I've done some maintenance on the blog. I removed my list of US Ryder Cup choices that I made in 2006. I thought about doing one for the European Team since they didn't win this time, but the team the Europeans had was a very strong team, with the exception of Martin Kaymer being left out. So, I didn't think I could add to that. I also removed a few links to blogs that hadn't been updated for a while. And I added the link to the European PGA Tour website and a link to Seve's website.

It's hard to believe that in a week or two I'm going to have to change the Order of Merit link due to the new year starting this week in China.

Monday, November 03, 2008

Great News on Seve!

According to the latest update from the hospital, Seve is awake and speaking to his family. He is breathing on his own and will begin some form of rehabilitation soon. Yippee!!!

Sunday, November 02, 2008

Weekend News

Seve Trophy News: According to this news article, the European Tour is looking at having the 2009 edition of the Seve Trophy in Spain in honor of Seve and his current battle with poor health. Sergio Garcia has reportedly pledged to support the Seve Trophy as a tribute to the 5 time Major Champion. Also, there are discussions concerning some type of year end award in honor of Seve to be awarded each year.

Race to Dubai: According to the same news article as above, it looks as though Phil Mickelson may not join the European Tour afterall. This really shouldn't be a surprise to anyone since Mickelson is very methodical at planning out an 'economical' (meaning the fewest # of events possible as well as predominantly U.S events) schedule. This makes me happy as I think the US players have snubbed the European Tour for so long that I don't think they deserve the chance to play for the big prize at the end of the year. That trash-talk in 2006 about the Nationwide Tour being the second best tour next to the US Tour - well the US PGA tour players can make their extra money by playing the Nationwide Tour with my blessing.

Annika Sorenstam wins: She played an LET event in China and won in a playoff. I guess if she wanted to win and couldn't get it done on the LPGA tour, she decided she'd go to China and try there. I read that she was hoping her appearance there would open doors and increase opportunities for women and children in China.

Round Up

Robert Karlsson won the Order of Merit today. Sergio finished the Volvo Masters tied for 4th. Soren Kjeldsen won the Volvo Masters. The 2009 European Tour season begins this week with the HSBC Champions tournament. Final Thought: Martin Kaymer should have been on the Ryder Cup team. He made one heck of a move up the Order of Merit and the World Rankings this year and it's a shame his hard work wasn't recognized with a spot on the team.

Ryan Palmer moved from outside the 125 to inside and a two year exemption with a win at the Ginn Sur Mer on the PGA Tour. Jeff Overton is sitting on #125 with one event to go. Hopefully he can retain his card after his bad break - the appendix. David Duval finished the event somewhere in the 30s - the subject of the TV jinx of the week thanks to all of the Golf Channel promos.

Jay Haas won the Charles Schwab Cup again for the second time in three years. I'm sure he'll give the prize money to charity, as is the customary thing to do with the check. I'd like to point out that Jay and these other guys who give away their earnings are already spreading the wealth without having to be taxed extra. But I'm not getting into politics on the blog right now. Fred Funk was only 12 points behind Haas and couldn't convert. He's probably really disappointed today. Again, I'll say that the Charles Schwab Cup is more exciting than the Fed Ex Cup.

Saturday, November 01, 2008

The Golf Channel Jinx

They jinxed David Duval by doing one of their "he's poised to win for the first time in such and such. Can he do it? We'll see in round three today on the golf channel" ads. Why doesn't that jinx work on Tiger Woods?

Going into the final rounds of the tournaments, here's my cheer: Go Sergio, go David, Go Jeff Overton.

Friday, October 31, 2008

Quick Notes

I've been out shopping all day and didn't see any golf or read any news until about 5pm. So, here's what I've got:

1. Justin Rose withdrew from the Volvo Masters due to the death of his grandfather. He was last in the tournament anyway so he's not missing anything by leaving.

2. The tournament officials at the Volvo Masters couldn't check yahoo weather like I did to see that it was going to rain and started the second round only to have to stop with only I think 4 people finishing the round. And they didn't play lift clean and place to start with so that means everyone else has to play a soggy course tomorrow playing the ball down. At least for the finish of the second round. I think I read on the European PGA Tour website that Miguel Angel Jimenez dropped 7 shots in the first four holes. He had an outside chance of winning the order of merit which is probably all but gone now.

3. David Duval is having the tournament of his year so far at the Ginn Sur Mer. I think they said he was only 2 off the lead.

4. No news on Jeff Overton despite him being the big news yesterday for playing so soon after his apendectomy. They did show his placement after the second round and I think he's tied for 36th or thereabouts. Projections put him at 126 if he finishes there. But I'm not a big fan of the projections thing. They show that during the first round - when it's absolutely meaningless.

5. Seve is still in ICU but doctors apparently report that he's doing well.

6. Looks like Jay Haas may be the winner of the Charles Schwab Cup again this year. Fred Funk was the closest man chasing him and he's not having a good tournament. Haas is currently in the top ten. Funk is well back. And I think they said you had to finish in the top ten to earn points. You know, every year, the Charles Schwab Cup is exciting. The Fed Ex Cup - not even close. What will the Race to Dubai bring? Hopefully a bunch of European players and no Americans challenging for the top spot there. I don't want to see the Americans go over and take over the whole thing after snubbing the European Tour for all of these years.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

News From Spain

Doctors report that Seve is doing better, but remains in ICU.

Volvo Masters: Apparently there's an uproar over the tournament organizers sending out Justin Rose first and by himself on Thursday. Some people think this is insulting to Justin as he is the defending Champion and it doesn't show him the respect a defending champion deserves. But, according to an interview I read, Justin appears to be okay with the order of play. He says there may be an advantage to going out first with regards to the condition of the course, particularly the greens. And he explained that the tournament organizers always send out the players in reverse order of their Order of Merit rankings, with the lowest ranked players going first. And Justin hasn't done well on the European Tour this year.

And according to Yahoo weather, it is not cold enough to snow at Valderrama. So, maybe my retirement plans haven't been ruined after all. Bad news for the golfers though, it looks like there's three days of rain in their future.

I haven't decided whether or not I'll be taping the Volvo Masters. So, I guess that means I won't be. I haven't yet watched the first two rounds of the Castello Masters from last week. I have Friday off but I'm going shopping again and won't be home to watch it. I have 5 days in a row off starting Friday. I took Friday and Monday off, but I get Election Day off and the weekend, of course. It will be nice to have all of that time off. I know the dogs will be happy to have me home. They miss my lap and the treats my hands give them.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

There Goes My Retirement Plan

I just read on BBC News that it's SNOWING, yes, I typed SNOWING, in Spain. My retirement plan centered on marrying a Spaniard and moving to SUNNY Spain! This weather development is just unacceptable. It hasn't even snowed in West Virginia yet.

I wonder what's going on at Valderrama. The Volvo Masters is this week. Maybe they should play with Paula Creamer's pink golf ball so they don't lose them in the SNOW.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Sergio Wins!!!

Sergio won the Castello Masters today and now has his name on the most unique trophy I've ever seen. You all should google it. It was designed by a famous Spanish sculptor. Jose Maria finished tied for 15th which is really great. I can't wait until the 2009 season begins in a week or two to see how he fares. The internet news claims Sergio has climbed to #3 in the world, but when I checked out the official world golf rankings website, it hadn't been updated yet. So, we'll see where he ends up. He started the year at 12th with a points average of 4.785. Whether he finishes 3rd or 4th or even 5th, which is where he started the week), it's been a really good year for him.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Moving Day

It was moving day on the European PGA Tour over in Spain. Sergio now has a 4 shot lead going into the final round. He did try to be a good host on a couple of holes with a few wayward shots and a couple of bogeys. Interestingly, that coincided with when I started watching the coverage. Jose Maria Olazabal also had a good round of -4. From what I've read, he isn't thrilled with parts of his game. I would think the rest of the world would be happy to be 8 under par after three rounds in a Professional event. Shows you how much of a competitor Jose Maria really is if he's wanting to improve an already great game. I read he starts his 2009 season I want to say the week of Nov. 20th. I'm not sure on that date but it's a couple of weeks into the new season at a tournament he won a few years ago.

Friday, October 24, 2008

After Round 2

After the second round of the Castello Masters, Sergio is in a tie for the lead at -11 and Jose Maria is at -4. He was one over par for his second round.

Seve Update: Reports claim he came through today's surgery well. The doctors report that their objectives had been reached - they reduced the additional swelling and removed more of the tumor. He will be carefully monitored for the next 48 hours.

On the US Tour it's the Frys.Com tournament. Everytime they say 'Frys.com" I think of french fries.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

After Round 1

After round 1 of the CASTELLÓ MASTERS Costa Azahar, Club de Campo del Mediterráneo,
Sergio Garcia and Jose Maria Olazabal are just two off the lead. Yay!!! I'm very happy to see Jose Maria playing well. Actually, I haven't seen him play yet. I recorded it. But I read about it and hopefully he's feeling good and will make a really good showing this week. I would love for him to win even though it is Sergio's home course. And yes, I copied the name of the tournament from the European PGA Tour website. There's no way I could remember that whole thing on my own.

Now for some bad news: Reports indicate that Seve Ballesteros will undergo a third operation tomorrow to relieve more pressure on the brain and to remove more of the tumor which was determined to be cancerous. One report claims the tumor is in an area of the brain that will make treatment very difficult. Things aren't looking good for the 5 time Major winner. I read a comment by Padraig Harrington which said that the European Tour should have made Ballesteros an Ambassador for the game last year when he announced his retirement and that he hoped Seve recovered and would be able to continue to be the inspirational force for golf that he's been for all of these years. I have to agree with Harrington that it's a shame that any organization waits until something bad happens before recognizing the greatness of whatever individual is involved. The running joke at the country music awards shows is that when someone gets a lifetime achievement award they say "most of the time, you have to be dead to get this award." There's a lot of truth to that.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Sergio's Big Week

This week on the European PGA Tour, Sergio Garcia and his father host the tournament whose name I don't remember at this moment. It's on the Golf Channel starting tomorrow morning at 9am eastern. I plan to record the whole thing since not only is Sergio playing, but Jose Maria Olazabal as well.

On a related note, I read that Seve Ballesteros is holding his own after two operations related to the removal of his brain tumor. Reportedly, he was awakened briefly by his doctors and then sedated again. Isn't that just like a hospital-waking you up just to tell you to go back to sleep?

Sunday, October 19, 2008

I Object!!!

Rich Lerner just said that Justin Timberlake was 'bringing sexy back to golf'. I 100% object to that statement!!! With guys like Adam Scott, Camilo Villegas, and Sergio Garcia, sexy never left golf!!!

Good Day for Spain

Alvaro Quiros of Spain won the Portugal Masters today. He defeated Ross Fisher and Robert Karlsson among others. I was kind of hoping Ross Fisher would win since he has a habit of not finishing well in tournaments. Hopefully, he will work on that.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Golf Channel Hyperbole

Inga Hammond said today that Justin Timberlake has done as much for golf as Tiger Woods.




I don't think so.

A Revision

You know how I always say I pay $70 a month for the Golf Channel with Dish Network? Well, I have to revise that to say that I pay $70 a month for the Tennis Channel. I checked the packages offered by Dish Network and they are now offering the Golf Channel in their 200 channel package - that's about $10.00 less than the package I have. But the Tennis Channel is still in the 250 channel package so I'm not downgrading my service. The Tennis Channel is going to be covering all four grand slams next year so I have to have that channel.

And as for the HD programming - I'm not paying extra for them. The picture quality just isn't enough to make me pay extra for channels that I already pay for in standard definition. If I want to see Sergio in HD, I'll go see him in person or watch him on my local stations with my house antenna.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Sad News (off topic)

I found out today that Archway Cookies is going out of business. This is really sad. When I was growing up, these cookies were one of those expensive treats that we might get once in a great while. And as an adult, that kind of spending habit continued - I might have bought a couple of packages of these cookies in the last 5 years. Archway began as a mom and pop operation back in the 1930s and produced their soft-baked cookies mostly after orders were received so that the product would remain fresh and soft for the consumers.

I think it's objectionable that the Presidential candidates who have been making promises about job creation, energy policy, and economic stimulus have allowed this American company to go under. The candidates could have been doing something about the rising food and energy prices all along as both do hold seats in Congress, but chose to wait and promise to do something IF they become president. Gives a new meaning to the "do nothing congress", doesn't it?

Thursday, October 16, 2008

World Cup

The teams that will be participating in the Omega Mission Hills World Cup have been announced. You can find the list by clicking here. Natually, I'm interested in this because Jose Maria designed the course. And there are some good teams to watch this year. England, Spain, Sweden, and Italy has the two Molinari brothers. It would be neat to see the brothers win.

Second Surgery for Seve

Internet reports claim doctors in Spain had to perform a second procedure on Seve Ballesteros after he suffered some swelling in the brain following the removal of the tumor discovered last week. Said reports state Seve is in stable condition following the operation to address the swelling. This complication is not uncommon in these situations. In fact, Dr. Quinn Medicine Woman performed a similar procedure - yes, that's fiction, but if it makes it on to a tv show set in the 1860s/1870s then it has to be pretty common.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Seve Has Surgery

It's been reported that Seve Ballesteros underwent a surgery lasting several hours (anywhere from 7 to 12 depending on which report you read) to remove as much of the brain tumor as possible. Reports have not indicated if cancer is present and have only speculated on what further treatment may be needed. Some reports indicated that Seve was conscious and responding well after the surgery. I hope for the best for Seve and I think of him many times throughout the day.

Here is a good article from Sporting Life that includes some insight that you might not have previously had about Seve and his affection for golf and the up and coming players.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Jose Makes it Through

Jose Maria Olazabal finished the Madrid Masters with a final round 73 to tie for 65th. But the real success of the week was in his own assessment of his physical condition. He seems satisfied with this first tournament in several months. Hopefully, he'll be back to playing regularly and giving golf fans everywhere some great golf to watch.

News on Seve

Seve Ballesteros has announced that tests have detected a brain tumor. Click here to read a news article that gives a few more details. I hope for the best for the 5 time Major Winner.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Jose Maria Pleased With His First Three Rounds

I found this article in which Jose Maria says he's overall pretty pleased with how his first three rounds have gone. I'm glad I found the article since I don't think he's going to be on the tv coverage today.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Today's News That I Know Of

Jose Maria Olazabal made the cut at the Madrid Masters. I haven't yet found a news article that describes how he's doing other than that he made the cut on the number and I think shot a 72. I think I read that he made three bogeys today? I hope he's still doing okay health wise.

Seve Ballesteros is out of intensive care but still in the hospital. I don't believe there's been an announcement of any kind of diagnosis and I'm not going to report on any speculations that I've seen on Google News.

The Golf Channel kept talking about Mark O'Meara today during the commercial break updates. Since O'Meara isn't leading the tournament and Ben Crenshaw is the bigger story, I'm guessing the Golf Channel is talking about O'Meara because he's friends with Tiger and Kim - more media suck-up-i-ness.

Yesterday's leader at the Valero Texas Open, Nathan Green, shot a 75 today in response to Thursday's 62. I had to look it up because I didn't see him on the leaderboard when I was watching round 2 today. Of course anyone who watches golf regularly should have expected this. Players usually follow up a really low round with a significantly higher round.

Thursday, October 09, 2008

Ballesteros In the Hospital

Seve Ballesteros was admitted to a hospital after experiencing a dizzy spell earlier in the week. He's been undergoing tests and according to his website, he feels well. I wish him all the best.

Jose Maria is on Track

Jose Maria Olazabal is just three off the lead at the Madrid Masters after shooting a -1 today in the first round. I'm very happy to see that :) I found this article from Sky Sports that includes some comments from Olazabal. I really hope he's back for good and healthy again. He still has a back issue, but really, what pro-golfer doesn't?

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Tune In Tomorrow

to the Golf Channel to watch the return of Jose Maria Olazabal. He's playing in Spain on the European Tour. I'm going to record it.

Saturday, October 04, 2008

Another Media Issue

I was watching some Golf Channel today and I heard Frank Nobilo say something about not heaping bold expectations on young Jason Day because it might negatively affect him. But then he goes on to say that Day has the talent and skill to be one of the top golfers of all time. Gee, no pressure there.

Bad Weather Makes for Bad TV

I really wish that this bad weather in the UK would go away so the players can come out of hiding and I can see who is who when I'm watching the tournament. As it is, they all wear the same black knit hat and they all look alike. You'd think they could have their names put on the hats and the rain suits so we could tell them apart.

And I can't imagine how miserable the golfers must feel after the rain has poured down on them and their black knit hats. Those hats must weigh 20 pounds (I don't know how many stone) from absorbing all of that rain.

Funny Quote

This quote showed up on my laptop's homepage today. I thought it was pretty funny.

Eighty percent of married men cheat in America. The rest cheat in Europe. - Jackie Mason

Friday, October 03, 2008

Book Review: Undercover Wife

WARNING: This book is not golf related.

I read the romance novel Undercover Wife today while I reveled (or wallowed - lol) in my day off from work. I'm reviewing it here because the last novel in this series was golf related and I reviewed it here. I figured if anyone found the review for the last book, then they might come back to read the review of this one. So, here goes...

This book is written by Merline Lovelace and is one of the Codename Danger series. I've collected all of the books and I have to say this book was much less techie, much less spygame-ish, than the other more recent offerings. I'm happy about this. The last book of the series, Match Play, was very techie, very spygame-ish, and didn't leave me with the impression of romance at all. Undercover Wife, however, is much different. Low tech solutions to problems (using hotel room furnishings as weapons for one) is just one of the ways that the author tries to connect with the reader. In my mind, I'm thinking that any reader would also grab for a candlestick to fight the bad guy. While readers like to escape from reality when they read a work of fiction, I'm pretty sure they want to find a piece of themselves in that book as well. As for the romance part - there are more 'oh that's so sweet' moments in this book than were in Match Play, for instance, Callahan telling the tech department to design a ring for Gillian that would match her eyes. There is one thing about this story that's bothering me. Granted, I read the book pretty fast, as I usually do, and I might have missed this, but I'm wondering what the resolution was to the highly contageous mutant virus. The bad guy used it to get the attention of Callahan's employer, but I didn't see in the book if the virus had been contained or destroyed. Is it still out there for someone else to use later on? Maybe in a future Codename Danger book? And there was one thing that bugged me, and believe it or not, it was a spygame-ish thing - Gillian, while undercover as Callahan's wife, kept calling him "Hawk" while in public. That's his secret agent call sign. I guess she kept doing it as a way to remind the reader that this was her first mission in the field? That sounds like a good answer :)

If you want to learn more about Merline Lovelace, you can check out her website by clicking HERE.

November issue of Golf Magazine

I got the November issue a few days ago and just haven't felt like posting until now (since I have a few extra days at home). Sergio is on the cover :) Inside there are features on JB Holmes, Andres Romero and yuck, Anthony Kim. Have I mentioned how sick I am of seeing the media suck up to him? I want the media to swarm Camilo that much and not let an hour go by without mentioning Camilo's name. After all, he won two, count them two, Fed Ex Cup playoff events back to back.

Anyway, about the Kim story in the magazine. They did this chart comparing Kim's first two years on tour with those of Tiger, Sergio, Charles Howell III and Adam Scott. According to this chart, Adam Scott played in fewer events in his first two years on tour, won one more tournament than Kim, and had a higher world ranking at the end of the two year period. So, Hah! Even Sergio had a higher world ranking after his first two years than Kim. According to the chart, Kim was at 15, Sergio was at 6 and Adam Scott was at 11 in the world. I'm not even mentioning Tiger's stats, but I will say that when you see them spelled out like they are in this chart, there's no way in the world the media has any justification in suggesting Kim is the next Tiger Woods. Talk about irresponsible journalism.

David Feherty's column is titled "Putting the Fun Back in 'Funeral' ". Draw your own conclusions on that one.

Pleasant Golf Viewing

There has been some pleasant golf viewing today. The European Tour - polite as always. The PGA Tour - I didn't hear Anthony Kim's name once. It's been nice.

As for news and such, Jason Day made a hole in one today. Bigger news is the weather. It's cold, windy and rainy in the UK where the European Tour is playing (when is it not windy, cold and rainy there). It's windy, cold and rainy in New York where the PGA tour is playing - they even had hail. Who was the genius who told the PGA Tour that the weather in New York would be great in October? It even looks cold wherever the LPGA is playing this week. I bet those people wearing shorts and skirts are wishing they weren't.

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Lucky Me

Lucky me, I took tomorrow and Friday off so I have four days in a row of non-work life. Yay!! I'm going shopping tomorrow so I won't be watching the European Tour, but hopefully I'll be home Friday to watch it.

Unlucky me: I found something quite disturbing on the program guide of my Dish Network service. It's apparently a channel devoted to the Barack Obama campaign. I'm not a fan of Obama and won't be supporting him for President, but just because I subscribe to Dish Network (as previously established on this blog only for the Golf Channel), I'm being subjected to this political crap. You know some spin doctor is going to say that everyone who has Dish Network supports Obama, when in reality, we simply purchase a product from Dish Network and Dish Network is giving us the Obama crap for free because no one in their right minds would actually pay to hear him spout off a bunch of rhetoric. That's what CNN is for should we so wish to follow the Presidential race. And FYI - I don't want an all McCain channel either. If they want to give me something for free, they can cut my bill by as little as $2.00 a month. That would be something their customers would really appreciate. Of course they would cut the bill and then say "brought to you buy Obama", thereby subtly suggesting that we should thank Obama with a vote.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Ole!!

This was a good week for Spanish speaking golfers. Eduardo Romero won. Gonzalo Fernandez Castano won. Sergio came in second. And Camilo Villegas won. And on the LPGA, Lorena Ochoa won.

Maybe the news people can talk about Camilo being the next Tiger Woods. Camilo's won his first and second tournaments back to back, which according to NBC hasn't been done in 11 years - last one to do it was David Duval.

And, a treat for me, the Tennis Channel aired the 2006 French Open final between Federer and Nadal (Nadal won of course) so I got to see that too.

The Forgotten Man

I was watching the Tour Championship scores scroll across the bottom of the tv screen and I saw the name of Billy Mayfair. Mayfair is 42, a cancer survivor, and is in the top 30 of the PGA Tour (or at least in the Top 30 of the Fed Ex Cup standings). Has anyone been talking about him? Probably not. But someone should. He's playing pretty well for an 'old' guy - old being defined by the media as anyone 40 or older because once you hit 40 the media thinks you're biding your time until you are eligible for the Champions Tour. Kenny Perry and Vijay Singh and now Billy Mayfair have shown them just how wrong they can be.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

What a Difference A Few Days Make

Sergio has a three shot lead heading into the final round of the Tour Championship. Anthony Kim is where he should be - coming up short behind Sergio. I'm not watching the tournament because I don't want to hear about Kim every second of the coverage. But I'm keeping up with the scores on the internet. One good thing to look forward to when Tiger returns, the networks won't be talking about Kim any longer.

Hopefully, Sergio can parlay his lead into a win. He isn't great when he has a lead going into the final round so maybe he will continue on his track of improvement and conquer that statistic like he's conquered the putting.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Souvenirs

My boss's brother came through with some Ryder Cup souvenirs. I was 'allowed' to have the Ryder Cup Official Journal (the book that tells about the history of the Ryder Cup and the current teams), the PGA Media Guide which details the history of the PGA and all of the PGA events (the PGA Championship, Senior PGA, Ryder Cup, etc) and my choice of either the divot tool or a ball marker. I chose the ball marker. My boss said his brother tried to get some autographs of the European team but they weren't signing. That's understandable, I'm sure they weren't in a happy mood. I don't know when they were asked, but after a week of the crowds reportedly yelling obscenities at them and their families and calling their rooms at all hours, the European team was probably happy to see Kentucky in their proverbial rear view mirror.

So, I got to gaze at really nice pictures of Sergio and Jose Maria today while I was at work. That was more than pleasant. It almost made the 8 hours I spent at work bearable.

Monday, September 22, 2008

If Only I Had A Passport

I got this email today from Ray Baker who told me about his website: Golf Vacations Spain Guide. I don't play golf, as you know, but I don't think that would stop me from going to Spain on a golf vacation. If any of you are contemplating a once in a lifetime vacation, check out the website and see if Spain catches your fancy. I know there are some Spaniards who have caught my fancy :)

Sunday, September 21, 2008

What Closing Ceremonies?

ESPN said they were going to air the closing ceremonies. Well, what they aired was Scott VanPelt's and Andy North's opinions on how the Ryder Cup turned out. If their opinions were worth anything, they would have been on the NBC coverage today. If ESPN says they are going to air the Closing Ceremonies, then they had better be showing some boring speeches by men I've never seen before. And if ESPN wants to get in on the Ryder Cup action, then they can outbid NBC for all three days of coverage.

Final Thoughts

I have several thoughts swirling around in my mind right now.

1. NBC has apparently bought into that 'cash cow' advertising plan by talking up Anthony Kim every chance they can get. Once upon a time, NBC was pretty neutral, but not today. They did their best to make Kim's win over Sergio the absolutely greatest win ever despite the fact that Sergio's Ryder Cup record comes from the pairs matches and not the singles. Kim's win wasn't that big of a deal today since he wasn't really taking a point from the Europeans. It wasn't likely Sergio was going to get a point in the singles to begin with. Thanks to this, I watched much of the day's coverage with the mute button on. At least Sergio wasn't the only one to hit into the water on 7.

2. JB Holmes - two years ago, I wrote here that I wanted to see JB make the Ryder Cup team. He made the team as a pick and I heard nothing but negative comments from Johnny Miller about it for all three days. At least Dan Hicks had the guts to call him on it when JB won his singles match today. Don't get me wrong, I love Johnny Miller. But he was wrong about JB.

3. Also two years ago, I wrote here that the top US ranked players were sucky in the Ryder Cup and that my Ryder Cup team wouldn't include them. Over in the side bar, you can see who I would have picked for a Ryder Cup team two years ago. Mickelson and Furyk, two guys I would have left off the team, did recover a bit this time around and actually won some points. Mickelson did still lose in the singles so I'm not sold on him yet. Azinger had a good idea for having 4 picks instead of two. And he used his picks for guys who aren't spoiled by their fame or riches like the top guys seem to be. All of this brings me to my one stunning comment that will no doubt be contentious in some circles: The US team loses because Tiger's on the team. He seems to be a wet blanket on the team and brings them down. When he can't win a session on Friday or Saturday, the others look around and say, "gee if the greatest player ever can't win, then we can't." And he doesn't seem to be much of a team player.

4. Why did Azinger have all of those assistant captains if they were all together and not spread out amongst the groups? Whenever I saw them today, they were all together. How much good did that really do? I think maybe Stockton, Floyd and Browne just wanted free tickets to the event.

5. More on NBC, they didn't seem to give equal time to the Europeans who won their matches. I didn't see an interview with Justin Rose after he beat Mickelson. Luckily, Rose is keeping a diary for some newspaper in England and I can read his thoughts later there and on his website.

6. Now for Faldo and the European team: I don't know why people aren't questioning Paul Casey's pick over Darren Clarke. Casey didn't do well this week and he hadn't been doing well on tour lately. Everyone focused on Ian Poulter instead which I think is a little unfair. And some will debate Sergio and Lee sitting out of the Saturday morning matches. They could have won a point that morning if they were healthy enough to go, but they could have won a point that afternoon had they been paired together instead of apart. Obviously they were split up in the afternoon in an attempt to get two points, and unfortunately ended up with I think maybe just a half. And now that we know that Lee and Sergio both lost their singles matches today, armchair quarterbacks will be questioning Faldo's decision on the Saturday pairings even more. It's easy to question the decisions after you know what the result is. I think Faldo did well with the team he had.

7. Robert Karlsson finally got his due today, winning his singles match. He didn't get any respect last time around because he drew Tiger in singles. This time, America saw what the folks in Europe knew all along - the man's one of the most formidable golfers in the world.

8. Oliver Wilson, Graeme McDowell, Justin Rose and Ian Poulter emerged as stars for the European team this week. Wilson may not have done well today, but he extended his match further than many thought he would and he had to deal with the Kentucky crowd and Boo Weekley.

Final miscellaneous thoughts: The 13th man of the American Team wasn't the crowd as Azinger claimed during the opening ceremonies, it was the guy who gave Kenny Perry his putter earlier this year. And finally, Heaven help the world if Boo Weekley and Michelle Wie ever got together. Neither one of them are scholars.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

I Like Huge Leads

After watching 11 plus hours of golf today, I've decided I like it better when Europe has a big lead. It's much less stressful. I didn't go to the grocery store today like I normally do because of the Ryder Cup and I was up vacuuming the family room before 8am. I didn't do any other housework until after the golf was over. I didn't even go out to get my mail today until after 7:30pm. The most distracting thing I did was to work some Sudoku puzzles and play with the dogs. After the golf was over, I went out in the dark and hosed off my car. It really needs washed but I don't have time to do it this weekend, so hosing it off was a compromise solution.

My comments on the day's events: Ian Poulter - great. Sergio's excited reaction to making that putt on I think the 8th or some hole near there - very great (especially if you're a girl and have a crush on him), Graeme McDowell - wonderful, Robert Karlsson - NBC may be surprised by the number of birdies he makes, but the guys who call the European Tour action on the Golf Channel wouldn't be - they know he's a birdie machine because they know his stats, Paul Casey - thought he looked like he was sick - he didn't have much energy out there, but it was good to see him make that putt at the last, Jose Maria Olazabal - I got to see him today and he looked great. Oliver Wilson did very well this morning, as did Justin Rose who paired with Poulter in the morning session.

Europe has to win 7 of the twelve matches tomorrow. I don't know if they will do that. It will be another nailbiter, or in my case, eating everything in the house.

And what am I watching now? The Spain vs US Davis Cup tennis matches. They are being held in a converted Bull Ring in Madrid, Spain. How cool is that? Spain may have a chance here in the doubles since apparently one of the Bryan brothers isn't playing.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Avast Me Hearties!

Sorry, but it is Talk Like A Pirate Day. Anyway, I had to work today and didn't get to watch much of the Ryder Cup. I recorded it in case the scores made me want to watch it, but so far they aren't that inspiring. I've got the competition on now, but the TV is muted. After I got home, the ESPN announcers were spending way too much time talking about Anthony Kim and Phil Mickelson so I turned the sound off. I didn't want to ruin my dinner. It didn't take long to get the impression that ESPN is biased. And of course, I just had to mute Rick Reilly. He's way too annoying. In honor of Talk Like A Pirate Day, shall I refer to Reilly as a 'scurvy dog'? LOL

As for the scores, I've had a feeling for about a year now that this competition was going to be close. Not like the past few where the European Team has won by a large margin. I think I felt this way because the US Team finally has a captain who 1) likes matchplay and 2) loves the competition of the Ryder Cup. Azinger's record isn't that great in the Ryder Cup, but at least he cares about it. I vote for Davis Love to be the next Ryder Cup Captain. Freddie's got the Presidents Cup so he's going to be busy. Not that I would switch my support to the Americans if Davis Love was captain. I don't think there's an American player out there who could woo me away from Sergio, Jose Maria and any other Spaniard who makes the European Team.

Opening Ceremonies

I watched the Ryder Cup Opening Ceremonies on ESPN News today. Aside from technical glitches (like no sound when the Stenson pairing was announced) and what appeared to be more time spent on Azinger and his morning match players, it was an ok event. Faldo was either really nervous or really emotional during his speech. At times I thought he was actually going to cry. The players looked really nice in their suits (the Europeans, I didn't spend too much time watching the US team).

One thing I'm getting annoyed at is the Golf Channel assigning Kelly Whatshername to cover Faldo. The conspiracy theorist in me has all kinds of suspicions about that. Faldo had better be careful.

I do have to give some credit to Azinger during the Opening Ceremonies. Dan Hicks tried his best to get either Faldo or Azinger to mention Faldo's list of pairings that was the talk of the media yesterday and Azinger completely ignored the not so subtle hint by Hicks to bring it up.

And while I wasn't paying that close attention to the wives and girlfriends, I don't think they were all dressed alike in the same outfits. If that's right, then I'm very happy. I didn't like the matching outfits of two years ago. Too Stepford-like and I can't imagine the men were anything but scared when they saw that.

As for the ceremonies themselves, the 2006 version was much better for entertainment value, with various artsy performances. I guess the US organizers remembered that Hunter Mahan wasn't getting paid for being there and didn't want to take up too much of his valuable time.

One last observation: There's a reason why these guys wear hats.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Sergio's Next Girlfriend??

I just read HERE that Carrie Underwood is going to perform at the Ryder Cup Gala Dinner. She's cute, blond, and in some ways looks like Greg Norman's daughter. Just kidding on that girlfriend thing :) But I do take exception to the article's classification of Underwood as a 'reality TV star'. She's a Grammy and CMA award winner. Don't put her in the same group as some of those cheesy reality shows like Celebrity Mole or whatever. And I don't know what Carrie Underwood has to do with horrible Ryder Cup fashion - I guess because she has some fashion sense and some former Ryder Cup captains don't :)

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Does Anyone Else Think This Is Unusual?

I was visiting Lee Westwood's website and saw this diary entry which said that Lee still has his tonsils and he gets tonsilitis about 2 to 3 times a year. That seems unusual to me because virtually everyone I know had their tonsils taken out when they were kids, me included. I hope making people keep their tonsils and get sick 3 times a year isn't part of that universal health care that the UK is supposed to have. If it is, then all of the employers in the UK must have very liberal sick leave policies.

Oh Joy!!!!

I just read that Jose Maria Olazabal is hopeful to return to action in about three weeks at the event in Madrid. I can't wait! I hope his health has improved and he's feeling better.

Really Great Ryder Cup Related Blog

For the next few days, if you want a European view on the Ryder Cup, then check out The PGA Tourist. There are some good team photos of the European Team.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Ole, Ole, Ole, Ole





Sure, to the untrained ear, Winnie and PJ may appear to be saying "arff, arff, arff" but I know what they are really doing is singing the "Ole, Ole, Ole" song in anticipation of the Ryder Cup. They can't wait to see their Honorary Daddies (Winnie's is Sergio, and PJ's is Jose Maria) defending the Cup and trouncing the Americans once again, this time on American soil. As you can see from the pictures, Winnie and PJ are 100% behind the European Team. Yes, I made those little outfits for them today. I only broke two sewing needles on my machine, stabbed myself three times handsewing and suffered one painful bite from Winnie when I tried to take her lovely Ryder Cup outfit off.


Friday, September 12, 2008

My Boss's Brother

My boss's brother may just be able to make my boss's life a lot easier in a couple of weeks. The brother is going to the Ryder Cup. He's got a free ticket by working for some European company. So, my boss has asked him to try to get me Sergio's autograph. LOL . He told me about it this morning and, being me, I said "Can he get Jose Maria's too?" My boss figures if he can get me Sergio's autograph, then I will easier to get along with. Hah! I didn't put that in writing.

Sunday, September 07, 2008

Fred Couples in Germany

This week, Fred will be playing in Germany. So, you'll want to check out the European Tour. I think there's an article on the European Tour Website.

Camilo in HD

I'm really liking my new HD TV. Camilo looked really good today. And he played well this week, winning the BMW event. This is his first win on tour and when he took his hat off after his last putt on the 18th, you just knew there would be more People magazine interviews and such. He just looks so handsome.

On the European Tour, Rory McIlroy almost won the European Masters. I don't have the winner's name right now to mention here, but you can go to the European Tour website and find out all about him. I know he's French and during the traditional french celebration, his poor baby got some champagne splashed on him/her.

As for Tennis, I'm guessing that Andy Murray beat Rafael Nadal today to get into the finals of the US Open. I mention tennis because Rafa and Roger Federer look really good in HD too. I guessed that Murray won because I turned the tv over to CBS and they were showing the Williams Sisters' match - as if the match between Rafa and Murray ended pretty quickly.

And of course I can't let this moment pass without mentioning Sergio's hole-in-one the other day. That was exciting and, fitting with the theme of this post, he also looks very, very good in HD.

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

The US Team

Well, here's a list of the full US Ryder Cup Team (* means they are Captain's Picks):

Mickelson
Cink
Perry
Furyk
Kim
Leonard
Curtis
Weekley
Campbell*
Holmes*
Mahan*
Stricker*

An observation: Azinger had to skip Woody Austin and DJ Trahan to get to some of the picks on the list.

I'm happy that JB Holmes is on the team. Hopefully, he will get to play. Ordinarily I wouldn't think about whether or not the players will actually play in the event, but after last time and Tom Lehman's sucky plan of sitting some of the players out for most of the whole event, I now can't trust the US Team to be fair and give everyone a chance to make some career/life-long memories. At least Azinger won't cave into the pressure of feeling the need to play Woods no matter how much he sucks - he won't be there. The US team might actually win a few points this time.

Monday, September 01, 2008

A New Observation

I'm watching the US Open tennis tournament on the USA network, on my new tv. Ted Robinson's (announcer) ears are really, really big on this TV. He probably would have preferred me keeping my old tv.

Big Day

Today was a big day. For me. For Walmart. And For my Discover Card. In West Virginia there is a sales tax holiday for the first week of September on EnergyStar products. This includes flat panel HD tvs. So, today I saved 6% of my purchase price of a 37 inch Sharp LCD tv. That was about $48.00. And by using my Discover Card, I will be able to apply my cash back bonus money to my balance and that means the purchase price of the tv was really about $40.00 less than what Walmart wanted to charge. Yay for me for saving about $86.00 today. The Discover card people were on the job - they called me to make sure I was the one who used my credit card today. I guess if I used it more often they wouldn't be so surprised.

As for the TV: Sergio and Rafael Nadal never looked better. I do have one small criticism: when the camera follows the putt, the surrounding grass is all blurry. I don't know if I can change any of the settings to fix this.

And what about Sergio today? Well, I think all the excitement over the Ryder Cup and his good play for the last few weeks has caught up with him and I think he's a little tired. One of the NBC guys said something about Sergio might be getting tired of playing with Vijay. Well, I think it's a good thing to get paired with Vijay since he's winning all the events. That means that on Sunday, you must be in pretty good shape if you're paired with him.

And if Mike Weir hadn't shaved off his "playoff beard" then he might have won this week. Hahaha. Those commercials of his are pretty funny.

Sunday, August 31, 2008

Faldo's Picks for the Ryder Cup

Well, Faldo picked Ian Poulter and Paul Casey to round out his team. I haven't been following the stats and rankings all year like he has, but I probably would have gone with Darren Clarke and Martin Kaymer. Clarke for obvious reasons: he loves the Ryder Cup, the Ryder Cup team loves him and he won last week. Kaymer, because I looked at both lists they pick the team from this morning and he was ranked 10th on both of them. But Poulter and Casey bring their own positive qualities to the team. They have both participated in the Ryder Cup before. Poulter made that great charge at the British Open earlier in the year, showing that he has an aggressive attitude that will be a plus for the Ryder Cup. Casey, while having an OK record in the Ryder Cup, also brings to the table a view colored by living and playing in America, which will be an asset since this year's competition is in Kentucky.

There were some points brought up during Faldo's press conference which were worth noting. One was about Faldo only having the one assistant captain, Jose Maria Olazabal. Faldo said that he preferred to be the one gathering all of the information and making the decisions based on what he knows and that he thought that having just one assistant will be enough. My view is: if people wanted a captain who would have 10 assistants then they should have picked someone else. Faldo is going to do things his way and that's the essence of having a single captain of any sport. The reporters asked about this conspiracy theory that Ian Poulter was 'on the team' when he decided to play in America. Again, I haven't followed this closely in the news, but Poulter has put forth the explanation that he needed 15 events to keep his card on the PGA Tour and to me, that sounds reasonable. I'm guessing that the extra tournaments that are played after the Tour Championship are still options for Poulter to use to keep his card or whatever, but the European Tour year starts before the calendar does so it isn't like Poulter has a lot of wriggle room there. And if you're going to play US events, then they might as well be the Fed Ex Cup playoffs in America for two reasons: more money and they are in America, the same place that's hosting the Ryder Cup. It really doesn't do Poulter much good to play in America after the Ryder Cup.

There were some questions about Montgomerie and Clarke, as you might expect. Faldo did a good job of answering each one with the same 'there were tough decisions to be made and I had to make them'. He didn't give any details of conversations or thought processes which is good. That would have only led to devisiveness among the team once the media reported it and then sought responses from Montgomerie and Clarke. If Montgomerie and Clarke truly love the Ryder Cup, then they will provide vague responses to the media's questions and finish every response with "I wish this year's team the best of luck at Valhalla." The way I look at it, all the European Tour players are on the team, it's just a matter of who's called up to play.

For me, the best part of the conference was the Jose Maria part :) Of course. He reported that he stopped taking the medication he was on a couple of weeks ago and so far felt pretty good, but that it was a wait and see situation. He also said that while he and Faldo talk and he gives Faldo his opinion, that Faldo was still captain, Faldo makes the decisions and Jose Maria supports them. That's a team attitude for you.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Ryder Cup in August

I'm thinking the Ryder Cup has come early to Sergio Garcia, at least in the attitude department. I saw a statistic today on the final round coverage that said that he was 1st in putting this week. And during the final round and the playoff Sergio had the biggest grin and seemed to be having the most fun of anyone who ever played the game of golf. If anyone wanted to copy any aspect of a professional golfer's game, it should be Sergio's fun-loving one that we saw today.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

A Glimpse of Sergio

For a second, I left the vollyball game at the Olympics to see what was going on with the Barclays and apparently Sergio's having a pretty good week so far. He's tied for second going into the last round. I saw him make a decent sized putt, then I switched back to the Olympics. It looks like the players at the Barclays are having the same kind of crazy day I'm having. First walmart charged me for one extra pack of puppy pads that I didn't have, then the dogs believed they were in a circus and I was the audience. Fritz would only eat supper after Steffi, my very old dog, actually got out of her chair and threatened to take his food. Steffi wouldn't eat her bologna so I had to get her some chicken. After Steffi finished eating, I let Winnie and PJ into the room for their supper and PJ threw up. But she ate her supper afterward. Once everyone ate, Winnie and PJ took off into the house somewhere and PJ came back and wanted me to follow her. So I did and found Winnie tearing the stuffing out of a dog bed. And now Fritz is going to start his nightly, every ten minutes he has to go out habit. There must be a full moon. If not here then somewhere in the world. According to my calendar it's Last Quarter Moon. Jim Nantz gave the impression that the players at the Barclays are having crazy rounds today - Stricker coming back to the field and falling behind and Kevin Streelman surging ahead. There's a bunch of players at and near the top of the leaderboard so Sunday should be very competitive.

As for me, I'll be watching the Olympics unless they show basketball or more Barack Obama coverage. Brian Williams actually interrupted the Olympics today to report on Bara-Joe or whatever the media will do to merge the names together in the time honored tradition set forth by "Bennifer" and "Brangelina". I thought it was pretty stupid to interrupt the Olympics seeing as how MSNBC had coverage of Obama all day long. And not to mention that three hours or so from the interruption NBC Nightly News would be on and giving a full report. I was pretty ticked as the interruption came in the middle of rhythmic gymnastics. I only get to see that sport once every four years. I have two solid months or more of seeing Obama every single day, whether I want to or not - Free Country my foot. Hopefully, there won't be any interruptions during the US Open tennis tournament coming up.

I read a transcript of a Sergio interview by the PGA Tour and he said he would be doing a few different things, practicing and staying with friends during the week off they have in between playoff events. Well, if Sergio ever needs to be in West Virginia for anything, he can consider me a friend and he'll have a place to stay here. He might not get much sleep since the dogs will be bunking with him in the spare bedroom, but he'll have a roof over his head. And of course, at 5am, we all get up and start the day. He might not like getting up that early - LOL

And one last little tidbit - I had a very nice dream last night about Jose Maria Olazabal. So, it seems like I'm really happy to hear that he might be returning to competitive golf soon since he's showing up in my dreams.

Friday, August 22, 2008

The New Buzz

The new buzz on the web is that Jose Maria Olazabal may tee it up again before the Ryder Cup!!! I'm so excited. I'm going to have to watch the entry lists and find out where he's going to be and record it. Although I love my screensaver that contains pictures of him, I would really love to see him back in action and competing.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Found This Headline on the AP Website

"Tiger captured after escape from Fla. sanctuary"

If you have your golf mind turned on, you'll read this in a different light than the actual story depicts. The actual story is about a Bengal tiger.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Golf Digest Magazine

I got the latest issue this morning because it had Nick Faldo on it with the Ryder Cup Preview. Well, I take exception to something in the magazine. Hard to believe, I know. Here's what I object to:

Jack Nicklaus says "Europe has a lot of good players and a host of very promising young guys. But who among them has a great record?"

It sounds like he's saying the European Team doesn't have any players with winning records.

Sergio has a 14-4-2 record in the Ryder Cup. He's 8-0-0 in foursomes.

The Americans are just jealous of Sergio.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

A Temporary Fix For the Screensaver

I created a screensaver of Sergio and Jose Maria pictures for my laptop. This may just be temporary until I can find the Valderrama screensaver on the web again. Not that I don't like my pictures of Sergio and Jose Maria, but I am really resistant to change and I would like to have my old screensaver back.

How Cool Is This???

Olympics: During the Beach Volleball match between the US and Spain, the people in attendance were singing West Virginia's State Song: Country Roads!!!

I'm Still Here

Just too lazy to go get my password to log in to Google so I can post. But I did it this time. Here's an update on what's been going on: My desktop pc is probably dead. I turned it on this morning and pushed buttons until I got a message that said the computer couldn't find a hard drive. If it can't find a hard drive, then that goes beyond my pc abilities to fix it. Luckily, my laptop hasn't crashed all week, knock on wood.

I've been skipping most if not all the golf talk this week in deference to the Olympics. Currently, they are playing the Bulgarian National Anthem. It's really depressing, starts out like a funeral march. Interestingly, they keep comparing tennis and golf, saying that the crowds wouldn't be carrying on during Tiger's backswing like they are during the play of the tennis players. Considering there are several tennis players who seem to think that golf isn't a sport, it sure does get brought up a lot during the tennis coverage. Jealousy?

I saw Roger Federer win the gold medal in doubles this morning. He showed a lot of emotion today and it was great to see him celebrating and jumping around after he won. The Gold medal and the Olympics apparently mean a lot to him. I'm leaving out his partner only because I'm not sure how to spell his last name. His first name is Stanislas. And he was excited to win too. I wish I could have seen the medal ceremony. If they aired it, then I missed it. I was hoping Federer would win doubles. The commentators seem to be starting to write him off just because he's had a bad year so far.

I'm thinking of getting a Capital One credit card so I can put a picture of Jose Maria or Sergio on it.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Crashed

My desktop pc crashed last night. Usually, you can unplug it from the power source, wait a bit, and then plug it back in and it's fine. But this time, that didn't work. I am either going to have to buy a new desktop or spend the money I would have spent on a desktop for a new laptop. I'm using my current, Toshiba, laptop tonight. It crashes too, but so far tonight hasn't and it's been on for 3 and a half hours.

The sad part is that I've seemed to have lost my Valderrama screen saver. I can't find it on the Valderrama website to download again.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Too Much Time Together

That's what Sergio and Padraig are probably thinking. I didn't watch much of the golf today. I switched from golf, to tennis, to the olympics, to qvc when I wasn't doing other things around the house. Every time I had the tv on golf, Sergio hit a bad shot, so I stopped watching it and just kept up with the scores on ESPN2. The few times I did see Sergio, I was impressed with his attitude. His head wasn't down and he smiled quite a few times out there. Even though he didn't win, and he probably should have, I think Sergio took a big step forward today. He had the lead for a while in a major that wasn't a British Open, that's pretty new for him and his attitude appeared to be 180 degrees different from last year's British. Some people will try to say that the step he took wasn't big enough and that he blew another chance and blah, blah, blah, but what's important is how Sergio feels about this week. He's the one playing the game. We are only spectators.

Friday, August 08, 2008

Olympics and Amateurs

I remember when they first let pros play basketball in the Olympics. I thought then that it was a bad idea and a desperate attempt by the US to win a medal. I still think that way every time the Olympics come round and I see the NBA players participating. The Olympics should be for amateurs. With all the talk about golf trying to join the Olympics, I think it needs to be emphasized that the Olympics should be for those who aren't already paid millions of dollars a year to play the sport of their choice. Is it really in keeping with the spirit of the Olympics to have a Tiger Woods win the gold medal? Tiger can afford the best clubs, the best training facilities, the best doctors, coaches, gurus, travel accomodations. Life is pretty comfy for him or any PGA Tour player compared to any guy participating in the US Amateur this year. And how often and how much heart would a Tiger put into the Olympics? Would he play the first one's he's eligible for and then bow out of it the next time? Andy Roddick of tennis fame is not participating this year by his own choice. In a sport where there is a backlash if anyone suggests changing the line up or adding a fifth major, would the pro players really want an Olympics to interrupt their finely tuned schedules once every four years? If people truly see the Olympics as a chance to grow the game world wide, then instead of opening it up to professionals, there should be an organized effort to pick the best amateurs from different age groups to partcipate. It would grow the game in the US and the world if only amateurs were allowed as there are only so many professionals out there, but many times more amateurs. If the pros want to participate, then they can coach the amateurs.

His Old Kentucky Home

JB Holmes' old Kentucky home might be vacant come mid-September if he can manage to win the PGA Championship. He'd quite possibly book a spot on the Ryder Cup team and everyone back in his hometown might have to attend to see him play. When I last checked the leaderboard, Holmes was leading at -1.

Sergio was doing quite well today, except for one hole, the 17th. He's still in it and hopefully will do well this weekend. His cute quote today (loosely quoted), "They aren't like greens. They're like purples."

Daniel Chopra hit a cool shot today. He stood with his back to the hole and turned his club upside down and hit his ball out of the rough. He followed that up by making the putt. That was TNT's shot of the day and will probably be on the highlight show tonight and probably on the Golf Channel. I'm watching a bit of the Olympics Opening Ceremony so I figure I'll miss the golf replays.

Update on the missing package: The post office is sorry. They apparently aren't going to do anything. I have to call the post office tomorrow and try to catch the mail carrier who mis-delivered the package before she goes out on her run. If I don't catch her before she starts, I'll put a note in the mailbox for her. I think I can email the Post Office website and complain or report the package as lost or something. It's amazing though, that if we tamper with someone's mail, it's a federal offense and we can go to prison, but the mail carrier can give our mail away to other people and that's acceptable. You'd think they would be more careful after the whole anthrax scare. But I guess after the first nervous few months of glove wearing, they got lax in their procedures.

Thursday, August 07, 2008

Bad Day Here

Something must be in retrograde in my zodiac sign or something. I have had really bad luck today. First was some bad luck at work (which technically happened while I was on vacation but I didn't find out about it until today). Then, I get my mail tonight out of my mailbox, there's a slip from the mailcarrier that said that my package was left on the front door of my house. Well, there's no package anywhere at my house. I walked to the neighbors and they didn't see any package either. So, the idiot mail carrier lost my package. I have to go to the post office tomorrow after work and complain. Third, I opened the brand new half gallon of milk I bought yesterday and it poured out like cottage cheese. The date on the jug was 8/15/08. So, that was a waste of about $2.50. The seller of the bad milk is Broughton's, just in case anyone was wondering. You should buy someone else's milk.

The good points: Sergio had a one under par round today at the PGA Championship. I think that's about it for the good points.

If you're looking for happier, more pleasant news, check out Golfblogger's website. He is attending the PGA Championship this week and has taken some pictures. It will be a nice contrast to my Bridgestone reports. I reported from the point of view of someone who doesn't play golf, but likes to watch it. Golfblogger plays golf so he will have a different point of view when he reports from the PGA.