Golf Digress

Physically cultured commentary on Sport and Wellness

Category: Uncategorized

Stalking Points Memo: Azodicarbonamide edition

“…food strictly from the earth.”

I cook just about anything, but I don’t fry no foods and I very seldom mess with pork. I’m not against port. But most of our guys are trying to make weight, and pork doesn’t help you make weight. When a fighter’s got to make weight, he should eat roast chicken, turkey, fish, green vegetables. When my fighters find out I’m cooking, they break the doors down.

North Philadelphia's George Benton, boxer, trainer dietician, hall of famer.

North Philadelphia’s George Benton, boxer, trainer dietician, hall of famer.

I really think diet has a lot to do with how fighters develop. Puerto Rican and Mexican fighters, most of them are brawlers and good punchers. You know why? Beans and rice and tortillas, that’s why. They eat food that’s strictly from the earth. Beans, rice, flour, corn.

It’s a funny thing, you eat better when you’re poor than you do when you’re rich. The more money you make, the more you start eating fancy food. When I was a kid, I was eating collard greens. Now I never eat collard greens. But they’re better for you than fancy food.

The late George Benton from “In the Corner” (Great Boxing Trainers Talk About their Art) by Dave Anderson (1991)

From NBC News:

8.7 Million Pounds of Meat Products from California Recalled

Nearly 9 million pounds of meat products has been recalled by a California company that processed “diseased and unsound animals,” according to federal regulators.

The meat from the Rancho Feeding Corp. of Petaluma, Calif., was processed without proper inspections and was considered unfit for human consumption, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service said Saturday on its website.

The agency’s notice classified the health risk as high, but said it had received no reports of illness. It did not specify what diseases might be involved.

From Gallup:

Americans Eating Habits Worsening in 2013

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Americans’ eating habits have deteriorated in 2013, as fewer adults report eating healthy all day “yesterday” in every month so far this year compared with the same months in 2012. In particular, healthy eating in June, July, August, and September declined by at least three percentage points from the same months in 2012. Moreover, in most months this year, healthy eating has been at its lowest in Gallup trends since 2008.

From CBS News:

Subway sandwich chain to remove chemical found in yoga mats from bread

Subway confirmed on Thursday that they were removing a chemical used to make yoga mats and rubber soles on shoes from their sandwich bread.

Thanks for the tip, Food Babe!

Thanks for the tip, Food Babe!

“We are already in the process of removing azodicarbonamide as part of our bread improvement efforts despite the fact that it is a USDA and FDA approved ingredient,” Subway told CBS News via e-mail. “The complete conversion to have this product out of the bread will be done soon.”

The fact that azodicarbonamide was used as an ingredient in U.S. and Canadian Subway products was brought to light by FoodBabe.com blogger Vani Hari. Hari claims the chemical can be found in 9-grain wheat, Italian white, honey oat, Italian herbs & cheese, parmesan/oregano, roasted garlic, sourdough and Monterrey cheddar breads.

From WebMD:

  Avoid Sports Injuries: Tips From an Olympic Doctor

 2014 Winter Olympic Team USA Chief Medical Officer Dr. Gloria Beim:

Non-Olympic athletes who are really interested in playing a sport need to think about training during the off-season. Think about doing routine flexibility and strengthening exercises and keeping your body balanced, because that reduces injury. Proper biomechanics and muscular balancing reduces injury. It really does.

I will give you an example. I often see tennis players (and even golfers) in the summer with shoulder pain. They tell me, “Yeah, I didn’t do anything all winter, but I just played tennis, five games, over the weekend, and my shoulder is killing me.”

No off-season shoulder pain here. Hello...

No off-season shoulder pain here. Hello…

 

Well, that is not surprising. The Olympic athlete would never do that. They are training all the time and they are keeping in excellent fitness, excellent muscular balance. They have the coaching, the training, the physical therapist or athletic trainers — all the resources to help them train properly and stay balanced and fit. They don’t get the overuse injuries that a non-Olympian would who jumps into his sport now and again.

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That’s Golf! Feb. 9, 2014 – Joe Black edition

Arnold famously assisted by Joe Black - as Jimmy Demaret quipped - with Hawaii as his nearest drop.

Arnold famously assisted by Joe Black – as Jimmy Demaret quipped – with Hawaii as his nearest drop.

I’M NOT SURE HOW I’D REACT IF I SAW DIRTY HARRY MOVING TOWARDS ME. BUT IF HE DISLODGES A PIECE OF STUCK CHEESEY BIT CHOKING ME, I’M OKAY WITH HIM ADMINISTERING THE HEIMLICH. YOU COULDN’T MAKE THIS STUFF UP, COULD YOU? WELL DONE, CLINT EASTWOOD. . .

…AND THEN, DID YOU HEAR THE CRIME DOG – THE ACTOR WHO PLAYS THE CRIME FIGHTING MASCOT – GETS 16 YEARS. AND SUBWAY SANDWICHES WITH YOGA MAT INGREDIENTS. TASTY! YOU COULDN’T MAKE THIS STUFF UP. (I’LL RESERVE JUDGMENT ON OLYMPIC UNIFORMS. AND MAYBE YOU SAW JOHN DALY’S STARS & STRIPES TROUSERS. KID ROCK WAS WEARING THEM YESTERDAY. VERY POPULAR SELLERS, I’M SURE, IN HELLMAND PROVINCE OR TEHRAN.)

…LIVE FROM THE INSTITUTE OF NON-BRACKETOLOGICAL RESEARCH, IT’S THAT’S GOLF! NO ALGORITHMS, NO DATA MINING, NO CREEPY STUFFED OVER-SIZED MASCOTS, JUST MINDLESS CHATTER. ACTUALLY, I HOPE THE NSA IS LISTENING…IT COULD BOOST THE RATINGS.

YOUR HOST AND SHAG BOY, WORTH A MILLION IN PRIZES, BUT NOT ONE OF THE 1.23 BILLION ON FACEBOOK, AGAIN SAFELY ENTOMBED INSIDE THE SHAG-ENCRUSTED CONFINES. THINK OF ME OF THE ZONE’S “PROFESSOR DUMPSTER.”

THE PEBBLE BEACH APPETIZER EPISODE RECALLS A TIME-TESTED BIT OF ADVICE: ONE NEEDS TO BE WARY OF APPETIZERS. MY METHOD, I THINK IS SOUND, SO I’LL SHARE IT. I DON’T TYPICALLY GIVE ADVICE BUT …WHEN IT COMES TO APPETIZERS, IF YOU CAN’T RECOGNIZE WHAT’S IN IT, BEST NOT TO PUT IT IN YOUR MAW.

…WE’RE A PRESENTATION OF SPORTSTALK AM 1300 THE ZONE AND YOUR AUSTIN AREA CHURCH OF THE INVETERATE DUFFER. HERE’S A STORY FROM JOE BLACK’S BOOK, “A FEW GOOD GOLF STORIES.” THE PRO WILL JOIN US IN THE NEXT SEGMENT.

IT’S ENTITLED, “ARNOLD PALMER’S CLUBS.”

…WE PLAYED THE DALLAS OPEN AT OAK CLIFF WHERE I WAS A MEMBER. IF YOU KNOW ARNOLD PALMER, YOU KNOW HE HAS ALWAYS FIDDLED WITH HIS CLUBS. HE DID EVERYTHING IN THE WORLD WITH HIS GOLF CLUBS. HE WOULD REWIND THE GRIPS DURING THE PRACTICE ROUNDS AND BE IN THE BAG ROOM BEATING ON THEM WITH A HAMMER. HE WENT INTO THE BAG ROOM AT OAK CLIFF TO TINKER WITH HIS CLUBS AND HE SAW MY CLUBS IN THE BAG ROOM AND STARTED EXAMINING THEM. HE COULDN’T KEEP HIS HANDS OFF OF THEM. HE CAME TO ME AND SAID, “I’ve got to have your driver.”

ARNOLD WAS WITH WILSON AT THAT TIME AND I WAS PLAYING WILSON CLUBS. I HAD A DRIVER THAT JOE WOLF, WILSON’S TOUR REPRESENTATIVE, HAD MADE FOR ME. HE SAID “I’VE GOT TO HAVE IT.”

I SAID, “ARNOLD, YOU CAN’T CAN’T HAVE THAT DRIVER.”

THEN HE SAID, “I’VE GOT TO HAVE THAT DRIVER.”

AGAIN I TOLD HIM NO. THEN HE SAID, “LET ME USE IT THIS WEEK.”

SO HE USED IT THAT WEEK AND DROVE GREAT WITH IT. HE WAS SUPPOSED TO PUT IT BACK IN MY BAG AT THE END OF THE TOURNAMENT.

WELL, ARNOLD, GARY PLAYER AND I WERE GOING TO CHICAGO THE NEXT WEEK TO FILM A TELEVISION MATCH BETWEEN GARY AND ARNOLD. THEN ARNOLD SAID, “WHY DON’T YOU FLY UP THERE WITH ME ON MONDAY? SINCE THE MATCH ISN’T UNTIL FRIDAY WE CAN MESS AROUND AND PLAY GOLF AND GO OUT TO WILSON.”

I TOLD HIM NO, THAT I HAD BEEN GONE FROM HOME ALL SUMMER AND I WAS GOING TO STAY HOME AND WOULD BE IN CHICAGO ON THURSDAY. HE SAID OKAY.

SO I CALLED HIM ON THURSDAY WHEN I GOT IN AND HE SAID, “HEY, YOU’VE GOT TO COME OVER HERE AND SEE YOUR DRIVER!”

I SAID, “WHAT DO YOU MEAN I HAVE TO SEE MY DRIVER?”

HE SAID, “WELL, I BROUGHT IT WITH ME AND I TOOK IT OUT TO WILSON AND, BOY, IT’S REALLY GREAT NOW!”

SO I WENT OVER TO HIS ROOM AND HE TAKEN A WOOD RASP AND RASPED THE TOE RIGHT OFF MY DRIVER. HE HOOKED EVERYTHING SO HE DID THAT TO ALL HIS CLUBS. HE HAD JUST DESTROYED MY DRIVER. I WAS REALLY HOT.

HE WENT OUT THE NEXT DAY AND DROVE IT DREADFULLY. THEN HE TRIED TO GIVE IT BACK TO ME. I SAID NO, THAT HE HAD RUINED MY DRIVER AND THAT HE OWED ME. HE ASKED ME WHAT I WANTED AND I SAID I WANTED HIS BACK UP PUTTER. HE HAD THAT FAMOUS PUTTER THAT HE MADE BY WELDING A FLANGE ON THE BACK OF A TOMMY ARMOUR PUTTER. HE HAD TWO OF THEM. HE REFUSED, SAYING HE WOULD BE IN TROUBLE IF HE LOST HIS PUTTER.

WE WENT TO SEATTLE FROM THERE AND EVERY TIME I SAW HIM I ASKED HIM ABOUT MY PUTTER. NEXT, WE WENT TO PORTLAND FOR HIS LAST TOURNAMENT, AND EVERY TIME I SAW HIM I ASKED, “ARNIE, WHERE IS MY PUTTER?”

AT THE END OF THE TOURNAMENT I WAS STANDING NEAR THE SCOREBOARD WHEN HE FINISHED AND HE CAME OVER TO ME AND SAID, “COME OUT HERE!”

I WALKED OUT INTO THE PARKING LOT AND HE PULLED HIS IRONS OUT OF HIS BAG AND HANDED THEM TO ME AND SAID, “I DON’T WANT TO HEAR ANOTHER DAMN WORD FROM YOU ABOUT MY PUTTER!”

THOSE IRONS WERE THE ONES HE USED TO WIN FOURTEEN TOURNAMENTS INCLUDING THE MASTERS, THE BRITISH OPEN, AND THE OPEN – TOURNAMENTS THAT ENABLED ARNOLD TO SET THE ALL-TIME MONEY RECORD OF THAT TIME.

I STILL HAVE THEM.

Moscow 1980

Image

One of a number of posters from an eventful year at the University of Southampton, 1979/80. It is for sale. I can’t remember many Conservative students during Madam Medusa’s time but I couldn’t resist the poster.

“…hard in a very sweet way,” says Bradley Wiggins

"At the top end it’s a very sweet pain, " writes the first British cyclist to win the Tour de France.

“At the top end it’s a very sweet pain, ” writes the first British cyclist to win the Tour de France.

“It’s hard to put into layman’s terms how you feel. It’s a nice way of being wasted. When you are fit and your form is great those efforts are hard in a very sweet way. Sometimes you haven’t got the form and you are suffering, but if you are hurting when the form’s good, it can be an incredible feeling. When you are getting dropped in a race it’s horrible, a lot of people who ride sportives and so on would be able to relate to that. But when you are off the front as I was in Paris-Nice that March or leading a time trial, it’s a different kind of pain altogether. At the top end it’s a very sweet pain. It’s mixed with the endorphins you get from the effort; it’s what makes you able to push even harder. I’ve been at both ends of the spectrum.”

From: My Time by Bradley Wiggins (Velo Press, 2013)

Top 10 Reasons to Fear Riding a bike in Austin

And the No. 1 reason to fear riding a bike in Austin...The Ford F-150, ladies and gentlemen.

And the No. 1 reason to fear riding a bike in Austin…The Ford F-150, ladies and gentlemen.

  1. F-150
  2. F-3500
  3. XTERRA-SE
  4. Ram 2500
  5. Silverado
  6. 4Runner
  7. Durango
  8. Tundra
  9. Explorer
  10. Highlander

That’s Golf! Feb. 4, 2014 Opening Segment

Not available on:  FACEBOOK, LINKED IN, TWITTER, TUMBLER, OK CUPID, PIN INTEREST, SNAP CHAT, J DATE, GOOGLE PLUS, INSTAGRAM, MY SPACE, CHILLER CREATURE THEATER, CENTRAL MARKET’S 10 MOST WANTED LIST OF BULK BIN GRAZERS, OR ON ANYTHING MORE PERFORMANCE ENHANCING THAN FRESH-SQUEEZED PINEAPPLE JUICE AND GINGER..

Not available on: FACEBOOK, LINKED IN, TWITTER, TUMBLR, OK CUPID, PIN INTEREST, SNAP CHAT, J DATE, GOOGLE PLUS, INSTAGRAM, MY SPACE, CHILLER CREATURE THEATER, CENTRAL MARKET’S 10 MOST WANTED LIST OF BULK BIN GRAZERS, OR ON ANYTHING MORE PERFORMANCE ENHANCING THAN FRESH-SQUEEZED PINEAPPLE JUICE AND GINGER..

PLEASE TAKE YOUR SEATS. WE’LL GET STARTED. WE’RE PART OF A COMPLETE AND WELL-BALANCED WEEKEND SPORTS PROGRAMMING DIET, ESPECIALLY ON THIS PUPPY BOWL SUNDAY.

I HOPE THE GRILL WON’T SET OFF THE FIRE ALARM. WE’RE STARTING EARLY HERE IN THE STATELY SHAG-ENCRUSTED CONFINES.

YOU MAY BE WONDERING:

COULD LISTENING TO THAT’S GOLF SKY-ROCKET YOUR CONFIDENCE IN THE BEDROOM?

I WOULD SAY — PROBABLY – NOT. BUT SINCE THERE HAVEN’T BEEN ANY STUDIES TO THE CONTRARY, THE QUESTION STILL REMAINS.

THERE’S ALSO THE POSSIBILITY IT COULD CONCEIVABLY HELP RELIEVE THAT “PAINFUL BURNING AND ITCHING.” IT’S POSSIBLE.

COULD IT HELP YOU ON THE FIRST TEE? WELL, WE’D LIKE TO THINK SO. ESPECIALLY THE SEGMENT DEVOTED TO GAME IMPROVEMENT. AGAIN, THERE HAVE NOT BEEN ANY DEFINITIVE STUDIES.

BUT ANOTHER GREAT THING ABOUT GOLF: NO NOROVIRUS. AND RARELY DO THE WINNERS IN GOLF GET DRENCHED WITH COLORED, SUGARY, STICKY LIQUID.

IN CASE YOU’RE WONDERING, YOU WILL RARELY HEAR ME BREAK INTO SONG. JOKES ARE INFREQUENT. AND I SIGNED A PLEDGE NOT TO TELL YOU ABOUT MY LAST ROUND.

WE DO, HOWEVER, DOGGEDLY TRACK DOWN AND VISIT WITH THOSE DOING INTERESTING THINGS IN GOLF. TODAY WILL BE NO EXCEPTION

WE ALSO INTENTIONALLY VEER AWAY FROM SOME OF THE MORE REGRETTABLE ASPECTS OF SPORTS TALK RADIO. I RARELY MAKE PREDICTIONS, OR SHOUT. NO LESS THAN BLACKIE SHERROD WROTE THAT: “SPORTS PREDICTIONS ARE THE LAST REFUGE OF DIMWITS.”

FRANKLY, THE LESS TALK ABOUT MONEY, THE BETTER. MY OWN BIAS IS AGAINST: “FIVE-SOMES,” “MULLIGANS,” OR “CARTS.” I ALSO THINK OLYMPIC GOLF IS A MISTAKE, A YAWNER, AND I’VE LONG ADVOCATED THAT SLOW PLAY SHOULD BE TREATED AS A CLASS C MISDEMEANOR.

SIMILAR PENALTIES WOULD, IN A PERFECT WORLD, BE LEVIED FOR SUCH OFFENSES AS TAKING MORE THAN ONE PRACTICE SWING, AND BRINGING A CELL PHONE ONTO THE GOLF COURSE…

WHEN IT’S GOING WELL THE HOUR PASSES QUICKLY. TRENT GIESEN IS THE LONG-SUFFERING PRODUCER. WITH A FACE MADE FOR RADIO, MY NAME IS JIM APFELBAUM. I HAVE NOT (YET) RENEWED BY GHIN HANDICAP. MY FAVORITE COURSE IS JASPER PARK IN THE CANADIAN ROCKIES. YOU CAN FIND ME IN FREQUENT BEAST MODE ON GOLFDIGRESS.COM.

YOU WON’T FIND ME, HOWEVER, ON: FACEBOOK, LINKED IN, TWITTER, TUMBLER, OK CUPID, PIN INTEREST, SNAP CHAT, J DATE, GOOGLE PLUS, INSTAGRAM, MY SPACE, CHILLER CREATURE THEATER, CENTRAL MARKET’S 10 MOST WANTED LIST OF BULK BIN GRAZERS, OR ON ANYTHING MORE PERFORMANCE ENHANCING THAN FRESH-SQUEEZED PINEAPPLE JUICE WITH GINGER…

WE’RE A PRESENTATION OF SPORTSTALK AM 1300 THE ZONE AND YOUR AUSTIN AREA CHURCH OF THE INVETERATE DUFFER. OUR SERMON TODAY COMES FROM AN INTERESTING BOOK, FROM IRELAND. “ONLY GOLF SPOKEN HERE” BY IVAN MORRIS IS DESCRIBED AS THE COLORFUL MEMORIES OF A PASSIONATE IRISH GOLFER. HE WAS ONCE A VERY GOOD AMATEUR PLAYER. AND, LIKE MANY OF HIS COUNTRYMEN, HAS A KEEN EYE AND AWARENESS FOR THE GAME.

HE RETELLS A STORY FROM BALLYBUNION, A PLACE OF MUCH LORE AND LEGEND.

THE FOLLOWING STORY CONCERNS ONE OF THE MORE COLORFUL MEMBERS, A MAN NAMED BILL HARNETT. IT GOES SOMETHING LIKE THIS:

“ON ANOTHER OCCASION,” MORRIS WRITES, “HARNETT, WHO EARNED HIS LIVING AS A BANK OFFICIAL, WAS SELECTED TO REPRESENT HIS ORGANIZATION IN A KEENLY-CONTESTED INTERBANK MATCH. AS LUCK WOULD HAVE IT, BILL WAS DRAWN TO PLAY AGAINST AN OBVIOUSLY MUCH INFERIOR OPPONENT, WHO HAPPENED TO BE A BOARD DIRECTOR OF THE OPPOSING BANK. BEFORE SETTING OUT TO PLAY, BILL WAS APPROACHED BY HIS OWN TEAM CAPTAIN AND TOLD “TO GO EASY” ON HIS OPPONENT BECAUSE THE POOR FELLOW WAS ONLY FILLING IN AS A LAST-MINUTE REPLACEMENT AND WOULD BE OUT OF HIS DEPTH. AFTER SIX HOLES, THE CAPTAIN MET BILL, HEAD DOWN AND OBVIOUSLY CONCENTRATING HARD, STRIDING DETERMINEDLY TOWARD THE SEVENTH TEE.

“HOW ARE YOU GOING, BILL?”

“SIX UP.”

“DIDN’T I TELL YOU TO TAKE IT HANDY?

“BLANK OFF!”

GOING FROM THE NINTH GREEN TO THE TENTH TEE, THE TEAM CAPTAIN AND PLAYER MET YET AGAIN.

“HOW’S IT GOING NOW, BILL?

“NINE UP.”

“JAYSUS, BILL, DIDN’T I ASK YOU TO GO EASY? THAT MAN IS ONLY MAKING UP NUMBERS. AND BESIDES, HE IS A DIRECTOR!”

“BLANK OFF.!”

AT THE TENTH, BILL’S OPPONENT MADE A VALIANT EFFORT TO RESTORE SOME PRIDE, BUT HIS SHOT KICKED UNLUCKILY INTO THE CAVERNOUS BUNKER JUST OFF THE GREEN ON THE RIGHT. AS HE WAS GOING DOWN INTO THE BUNKER THE POOR MAN LOST HIS FOOTING AND FELL INTO THE SAND, GROUNDING HIS CLUB IN THE PROCESS. BILL RUSHED FORWARD – NOT TO THE MAN’S ASSISTANCE, BUT TO CLAIM THE HOLE AND MATCH! WHEN BILL’S TEAMMATES HEARD ABOUT THIS, THEY WERE DISGUSTED AND SHUNNED HIM IN THE CLUBHOUSE AFTERWARD. HE WAS LEFT TO EAT AND DRINK ALONE. AFTER A SUITABLE COOLING OFF PERIOD, SOMEBODY APPROACHED BILL, WHO, IT MUST BE SAID, WAS NORMALLY A MOST AFFABLE AND WARM PERSON.

“WHY DID YOU DO IT, BILL? WHAT DID THAT POOR MAN EVER DO TO YOU?”

“IT IS LIKE THIS,” REPLIED BILL. “THE SHAGGER HAD A BAG OF PEPPERMINTS THE WHOLE WAY ROUND AND HE NEVER OFFERED ME ONE!”

IVAN MORRIS, FROM “ONLY GOLF SPOKEN HERE,” COLORFUL MEMORIES OF A PASSIONATE IRISH GOLFER. (AT LEAST ONE.)

“I know this is heresy.”

Never too late for a little John Tunis sanity, especially on the eve of the big game, this from $ports$ (1928):

Man has always, I suppose, been a hero worshiper. Doubtless he always will be. We Americans do not seem to take to religious prophets. We have no Queen Marie, nor even a Mussolini, to raise upon a pedestal. Consequently we turn hopefully to the world of sports. There we will find the material to satisfy our lust for hero worship; there we discover the true gods of the nation. Messrs. Hagen, Tunney, Tilden, Jones, Ruth, Cohen, Dempsey – these become the idols of America’s masculine population, young and old. And why not? After all we ask ourselves, are they not athletes? Have they not been cleansed (and so sanctified) in the great white heat of competition, upon the links or the gridiron, the court or the diamond. That competitive sport – any kind of competitive sport from squash tennis to prize fighting makes for nobility of character, such is the first commandment of the American sporting public. This, in fact, is the foundation of the Great Sports Myth.

"Yet if football, for instance, is the noble, elevating and character-building sport it is supposed to be why, I wonder, is it necessary to station an umpire, a field judge, a head linesman, and half a dozen assistants to follow the play..."

“Yet if football, for instance, is the noble, elevating and character-building sport it is supposed to be why, I wonder, is it necessary to station an umpire, a field judge, a head linesman, and half a dozen assistants to follow the play…”

Yet, in plain truth, highly organized competitive sports are not character-building; on the contrary, after a good deal of assistance at and some competition in them, I am convinced that the reverse is true. So far are they from building character that, in my opinion, continuous and excessive participation in competitive sports tends to destroy it. Under the terrific stress of striving for victory, victory, victory, all sorts of unpleasant traits are brought out and strengthened. Too frequently the player’s worst side is magnified; his self-control is broken down much more than it is built up. I know this is heresy. I realize that the contrary is preached from every side. (Most fervently, however, the preachers are sports writers, football coaches, or others who have some other direct and personal interest in the furtherance of the Great Sports Myth.) I am aware that the participants in American sports are all supposed to be little short of demi-gods. Yet if football, for instance, is the noble, elevating and character-building sport it is supposed to be why, I wonder, is it necessary to station an umpire, a field judge, a head linesman, and half a dozen assistants to follow the play at a distance of a few yards and to watch zealously every one of the twenty-two contestants in order that no heads and no rules may be simultaneously broken?

Stalking Points Memo: Save it for Later edition

From: Boingboing.net:

What is exposed about you and your friends when you login with Facebook

When you log in to a service with Facebook, the company exposes an enormous amount of sensitive personal information to the service’s operator — everything from your political views to your relationship status. What’s more, logging into a service with Facebook also exposes your contacts’ personal information to the service: their locations, political views, organizations, religion, and more.

From Fox News:

Sitting increases risk of heart failure in men, study shows

In a study published in the journal Circulation: Heart Failure, researchers analyzed the health of 84,170 men ages 45 to 69 without heart failure. Over an eight-year period, they analyzed the men’s exercise levels in addition to their time spent being sedentary.

At the study’s end, men with low levels of physical activity were 52 percent more likely to develop heart failure compared to men with high levels of physical activity. Furthermore, men who spent five or more hours a day sitting were 34 percent more likely to develop heart failure compared to those who spent less than two hours a day sitting – regardless of how much they exercised. “Be more active and sit less. That’s the message here,” lead researcher Deborah Rohm Young of Kaiser Permanente in Pasadena, California, said in a press release.

From the Associated Press:

 Cyclist: Driver didn’t see me stuck in windshield

 A Wisconsin man who became lodged in the windshield of a car that struck him said he turned to the driver and said, “Hello, I’m the guy you hit on the bicycle.”

The driver did not respond, but continued on, running a stop sign and hitting another vehicle before he arrived home, the cyclist, Steven Gove, told HTR Media about the Saturday incident. The man finally noticed Gove when he stopped the car outside his home. …

Gove, a 56-year-old newspaper carrier, was shocked that the driver didn’t see him on his three-wheeled delivery bike. “I was wearing my blue overcoat with my neon reflective vest,” said Gove. “I had my front and rear flashers on. I have no idea why he didn’t see me.”

From Fox News:

Pepsi One contains high levels of potential carcinogen, Consumer Reports reveals

Recent testing by Consumer Reports has revealed that cans of Pepsi One may contain high levels of a potential carcinogen called d 4-methylimidazole (4-MeI).

Under Proposition 65, the state of California mandates that any food or beverage that exposes people to more than 29 micrograms of 4-MeI per day must carry a health warning on its packaging.

Knowing that 4-MeI is often used in the artificial caramel coloring that gives soda its brown hue, Consumer Reports tested 81 cans and bottles of popular soft drinks purchased in New York and California between April and September 2013. The researchers then retested any brands that initially tested as containing over 29 micrograms of 4-MeI per can or bottle. Both rounds of testing revealed that Pepsi One and another soft drink called Malta Goya contained more than 29 grams of 4-MeI per can or bottle.

From the New York Times:

Pete Seeger, Songwriter and Champion of Folk Music, Dies at 94

“Through the years, Mr. Seeger remained determinedly optimistic. “The key to the future of the world,” he said in 1994, “is finding the optimistic stories and letting them be known.”

From Fox News:

Daily Buzz: Is Tiger Woods too buff for his own good?

“My opinion is he did too much of that,”€[Hank] Haney said of [Eldrick] Woods’ workouts, via Golf.com. “He does a lot of the gym stuff. I know you need to do some for golf, no doubt about it. You need to be in shape, you need to avoid injury, but my opinion is he really overdoes that.

“… I look at him now and a lot of guys mentioned on the telecast, he looks bigger this year. I think Peter Kostis mentioned that. He looks like he’s gained more muscle mass. When he was thinner and younger he was actually faster then. The strength maybe helps you get out of the rough but I’d agree that he’s overdone it. But he loves to work out.”€

Instead, Haney says, Woods’ time would be better spent on the putting green.

“Let me tell you what his real key to golf is, it’s getting out there and practicing his putting,” Haney said.” He had five three-putts in 54 holes at Torrey Pines and you’re not going to fix that in the gym.”

That’s Golf! Jan. 26, 2014

Will any of these gentlemen be wearing Vibram Five-Fingers with "abrasion-resistant Coconut active carbon?" I doubt it.

Will any of these gentlemen be wearing Vibram Five-Fingers with “abrasion-resistant Coconut active carbon?” I doubt it.

IT BEGAN AS A RUMOR. I DIDN’T BELIEVE IT AT FIRST, BUT I SHOULD KNOW BETTER. SOME MAY SEE IT AS YET ANOTHER SIGN OF THE ADVANCING APOCALYPSE. I DON’T KNOW. I’LL LEAVE THAT TO YOU.

YOU KNOW THOSE TOE-SHOES YOU SEE SOMETIMES ON RUNNERS? GET THIS: THEY’RE BEING ADAPTED TO GOLF, AND POSSIBLY COMING TO A GOLF COURSE NEAR YOU. I KID YOU NOT. GOLF TOE SHOES.

THIS FROM THE PRESS RELEASE: QUOTE:

“Built for the everyday wearer the Speed XC Lite helps keep it light and airy while continuing to give you traction when needed.”  A WHOLE LINE OF TOE-WIGGLY GOLF SHOES.

BE AFRAID. BE VERY AFRAID.

THE GREAT THING IS THAT SOME KNUCKLEHEAD COMPETITOR IS GOING TO WEAR THEM INSIDE THE GATES AT AUGUSTA NATIONAL DURING THE MASTERS. AND THE LATE CLIFFORD ROBERTS IS GOING TO RISE UP FROM HIS GRAVE TO ATTACK THE TOE-WIGGLING, FLORESCENT-WEARING FASHIONISTAS.

VIBRAM FIVE-FINGERS: “abrasion-resistant Coconut Active Carbon in the upper for natural breathability, 4mm EVA in the midsole for plating protection, and a lightly cleated Vibram® performance rubber outsole for extra traction on a variety of terrain.”

Be afraid. Be very afraid.

Be afraid. Be very afraid.

OH. DEAR.

ABSOLUTELY NOTHING DOWN! WITH NO FIST-PUMPS, ARM RAISING OR CHEST THUMPING. THE SHOW THAT’S NEVER BEEN FLAGGED FOR TAUNTING, IT’S THAT’S GOLF!

WE CALL THIS MEETING OF THE FAT SHOT AND OH NO SOCIETY TO ORDER. LET ME EXPLAIN. I KNOW IT’S EARLY. THE ENDEAVOR IS TO ENHANCE OUR COLLECTIVE APPRECIATION AND UNDERSTANDING OF THE GAME BROUGHT TO YOU BY THE SAME PEOPLE WHO GAVE US BAG PIPES… A PLEASANT GAME PLAYED IN PLEASANT PLACES, MOSTLY BY PLEASANT PEOPLE.

ONE REASON FOR ITS UNIVERSAL APPEAL: “GOLF,” WROTE HENRY LONGHURST, “IS IN ESSENCE THE SAME ALL OVER THE WORLD, HOWEVER MUCH COURSES AND SCENERY MAY DIFFER. THE GOLFER WHO MISSES A FOUR-FOOT PUTT AT ST. ANDREWS FEELS EXACTLY THE SAME AS THE MAN WHO DOES IT IN JAPAN OR NEW ZEALAND OR HAWAII.”

GOOD MORNING. YOUR GOLF AP, WRITER-FOR-HIRE AND BIKINI POKER DEALER BACK AGAIN WITH A VICARIOUS WELCOME. WE’RE LIVE, DEEP INSIDE THE SHAG-ENCRUSTED CONFINES.

TOPICS WE WON’T BE COVERING THIS MORNING: NICK SABAN, PLASTIC SURGERY HORROR STORIES, LATRELL SPREWELL, THE SECOND, THIRD AND FOURTH AMENDMENTS, OR MR. MOSELY. WE WILL, HOWEVER, BRING YOU INSTRUCTION TIPS AND SAGE ADVICE AT GOLF WRITER PRICES.

ONE ASPECT OF MODERN GOLF, THE GOLF CAR CONTINUES TO EVOLVE. YOU’VE GOT YOUR DUESENBERG FRONT, ALL MANNER OF INNOVATIONS. I WOULDN’T BE SURPRISED IF AIR BAGS ARE NEXT. SOME HAVE HEADLIGHTS AND USB PORTS. LATER I’LL TELL YOU ABOUT ONE MODELED ON A SURFBOARD. YOU LITERALLY CRUISE YOUR WAY AROUND. IT GOT A RARE ‘BEST IN SHOW’ AWARD THIS WEEK, SO IT’S NOT A SPOOF. REGARDING CONVENTIONAL CARS, HERE’S JUST A SAMPLING… A NEW MODEL FROM CLUB CAR, A LEADING MANUFACTURER: QUOTE:

The newest Precedent model comes standard with a 10.1-inch screen mounted in the car, enabling golfers to receive information such as weather alerts and other messages from the golf shop.  As part of the standard offering, courses will have access to information regarding the status of their cars’ batteries and service notifications. They also can pre-set messages to send to golf cars entering restricted areas. The 20-14 Precedent features a new, advanced electrical charging system. The system boasts an efficiency rating of 91 percent along with reliable sealed housing, intelligent charge monitoring and a USB connection that enables two-way data transfer about battery status and system updates.

DOES THAT HONESTLY ADVANCE THE GAME?? REALLY?

BOTH OF YOU MAY RECALL THAT I HARBOR STRONG OPINIONS ON THE SUBJECT OF GOLF CARS. I’M NOT HERE TO ARGUE. I CONCEDE THE BATTLE HAS BEEN LOST. THEY BLOT THE LANDSCAPE. WHICH BRINGS US TO OUR INSPIRATIONAL MESSAGE FOR THIS BRIGHT SUNDAY MORNING.

A PRESENTATION OF SPORTSTALK AM 1300 THE ZONE AND YOUR AUSTIN AREA CHURCH OF THE INVETERATE DUFFER, WE TURN TO A MUCH MORE RATIONAL VIEW OF THE “BUGGY.” THIS ALSO FROM HENRY LONGHURST AND HIS 1966 BOOK, ‘TALKING ABOUT GOLF.’

THE GREAT BRITISH OBSERVER AND BROADCASTER WROTE: “I THINK AMERICAN GOLFERS ARE MORE LIKELY TO LOSE THE USE OF THEIR LEGS THAN WE ARE, OR AT ANY RATE TO LOSE THEM FIRST. IT IS AN ABSOLUTE FACT THAT GREAT NUMBERS OF THEM HAVE ALREADY LOST THE USE OF THEIR LEGS AS FAR AS GOLF IS CONCERNED AND WOULD NO MORE WALK ROUND A COURSE THAN FLY.

“IN THE EARLY DAYS IT WAS THE CUSTOM OF THE GENTLEMAN GOLFER TO HAVE A CADDIE. THE CADDIES SEEM TO HAVE VARIED FROM BOTTLE-NOSED OLD CHARACTERS OF UNCERTAIN TEMPER – PARTICULARLY, I THINK IT MAY BE SUGGESTED WITHOUT OFFENCE, IN SCOTLAND – TO EAGER LITTLE BOYS AT SIXPENCE A ROUND, LIKE J.H. TAYLOR 80 YEARS AGO.

MANY OF THESE GOLFERS WOULD NOT THINK OF PLAYING WITHOUT A CADDIE. THEY WOULD RATHER NOT PLAY AT ALL. AS GOLF BAGS AND SETS OF CLUBS GOT BIGGER AND BIGGER AND CADDIES GOT FEWER AND FEWER AND MORE AND MORE EXPENSIVE, GOLFERS WHO WERE EITHER UNWILLING OR IN SO MANY CASES UNABLE, TO LUG AROUND THIS VAST MASS OF MAINLY UNNECESSARY EQUIPMENT WERE FACED WITH TWO CHOICES. THEY COULD EITHER LIMIT THEMSELVES IN THE NUMBER OF CLUBS THEY WERE CAPABLE OF USING – ANYTHING FROM FIVE TO TEN – AND CARRY THEM ROUND IN A DRAINPIPE BAG, OR HAUL THEM ROUND ON A SPECIAL PERAMBULATOR.

“FOR MYSELF,” HE CONTINUES, “I HAVE CHOSEN THE FORMER CHOICE. I CARRY NINE CLUBS AND AM IN THE PROCESS OF DESIGNING FOR THEM WHAT I HOPE WILL PROVE TO BE THE PERFECT DRAINPIPE CONTAINER. FRANKLY I NEVER THOUGHT TO SEE THE TROLLEY ‘CATCH ON’ BUT IT CERTAINLY HAS DONE AND I DO NOT LOOK DOWN MY NOSE AT THIS FORM OF TRANSPORT THOUGH NOTHING WOULD INDUCE ME TO USE IT MYSELF – QUITE APART FROM ITS TENDENCY TO SLOW DOWN A ROUND OF GOLF BY ANYTHING FROM TWENTY MINUTES TO HALF AN HOUR.

“I ADHERE TO MY ORIGINAL BELIEF THAT IT IS REALLY RATHER RIDICULOUS FOR ANY YOUNGISH ABLE-BODIED MAN TO PLAY GOLF FOR FRESH AIR AND EXERCISE AND THEN DELIBERATELY DO AWAY WITH THE EXERCISE BY RIDING ROUND THE COURSE IN A BUGGY. IN THE PAST MONTH, HOWEVER, I HAVE COME VERY MUCH ROUND TO THE POINT OF VIEW THAT THESE LITTLE CARTS MAY PROVE A REAL BLESSING TO ALL MANNER OF PEOPLE.”

HENRY LONGHURST, FROM TALKING ON GOLF.”

I THINK HE WAS 57 WHEN HE WROTE THOSE WORDS.

 

Magical thinking about the belly fat putter

What? No precision milled specs?

What? No precision milled specs?

How dire are golf’s fortunes? So bad that Donald Trump has been enlisted. The litigious and bankruptcy-happy megalomaniac mogul, noted for bullying rural Scots and for his devotion to conspiracy theories and failed presidential aspirations, is the absolute last persongolf needs. To those struggling for answers, The Donald must seem like a ray of sunshine. The most recent bad news: 2013 marked the eighth year in a row where course closings outpaced course openings. It wasn’t even close: 14 openings to 157 closings, a rout.

The Donald appeared as part of the PGA of America's "Forecast Appears Brighter" panel.

The Donald appeared as part of the PGA of America’s “Forecast Appears Brighter” panel.

An everyman of the people like The Donald would naturally be sympathetic to the plight of public golfers. The National Golf Foundation also noted that 66 percent of the closings were those charging $40 green fees or less – the bottom end of the public golf pyramid. As with those at the economy’s upper end, private golf bastions at the game’s pinnacle, the Oakmonts, Baltusrols, Olympic Clubs, Champions, etc. will ride out the rough seas. It’s the bottom end that bears and will continue to bear the brunt of golf’s malaise.

One notable deck chair on golf’s Titanic is the continuing debate over the fate of the belly or anchored putter. PGA president Ted Bishop renewed calls last week for the repeal of a proposed ban on the club that Adam Scott deployed most notably in winning last year’s Masters. Let’s review:

As our mission is to grow the game, on behalf of our 27,000 men and women PGA Professionals, we are asking the USGA to seriously consider the impact this proposed ban may have on people’s enjoyment of the game and the overall growth of the game.

Would someone please trot out the golfer who has quit golf because he was denied the use of a club deemed non-conforming? There isn’t one. Not a soul, certainly not enough to statistically reverse golf’s declining fortunes. And will these tormented, distressed and aggrieved golfers, those denied the enjoyment to which President Bishop refers, be entitled to redress for “pain and suffering?”

No one “needs” the belly putter to enjoy golf. And no one under the age of, say, 84-and-a-half should be allowed to use it. I once shared a round with a man on a lovely city course in Portland who putted croquet style. He’d taken lessons from one of the style’s last proponents, Bob Duden.

“I thought that was illegal,” I said to him. “Who cares?” was his entirely proper response. He was not competing, nor establishing a handicap, nor playing the game by the game’s established rules. He played for his own amusement and recreation, and showed no outward signs of anarchy or revolutionary spirit. Might we add that with respect to any club wielded by those paying a green fee, or, in this case, the belly fat putter, no official ban will deny anyone its use. Sadly, for the aggrieved, if you choose to play by the rules you will have to do so.

Obviously, there is no shortage of putter options. Choice is hardly an issue. Garages are filled with putters that were once thought to be imbued with magical qualities. Room will soon be made for the belly fat putter once its time has passed. The proposed ban has absolutely nothing to do with ‘growing the game’ and nothing to do with making golf “fun,” the latter a perplexing way of describing golf that would surely have confused its early proponents.

But, if indeed golf is to be “fun,” whatever that means, looking to the future I would suggest two words: miniature golf. Can we agree that children enjoy mini golf? Have you ever heard a child complain that his putter was not milled, face-balanced or properly fitted? That the game was less enjoyable because his putter contained no thermoplastic elastomers or heel and toe circular sole weights?

If children can enjoy diverting themselves with the most modest equipment, the argument that golf is not “fun” without a club that the USGA, the game’s steward, finds inconsistent with golf’s spirit and standards falls apart. Denying the use of the belly putter has nothing to do with anything other than magical thinking and profit.

The way to improve golf, to help it grow, is simply to make those new to it welcome. This continues to be a major failing, neatly described in what has been described as the “intimidation factor.” New golfers must be taught how to swing and chip and putt. More importantly, they need to be shown the courtesies, responsibilities and traditions that have made golf a social activity for centuries. The emphasis on making golf easier or more fun is, to my way of thinking, misplaced. The only way for golfers to find their way and their place in the game is to understand what is expected of them. Only then can the delights of the game be revealed. The equipment is incidental.

Rather than enlist Donald Trump, the PGA and others concerned would do far better than to listen to one of their own. Jack Burke, the celebrated Masters and PGA Champion, a Ryder Cup captain, and the son of Texas’s first golf pro, has long advocated on behalf of the amateur golfer.

He wrote that good players inspire others, particularly the young. “They add immeasurably to the atmosphere,” he writes in ‘It’s Only a Game.’ “Usually the top players are aware of their standing and live up to it in the way they dress, their behavior, their modesty, and their good sportsmanship. They set a positive tone for everyone.”

Something else that should be digested by all those bleating about any perceived injustice regarding the belly fat putter: “A good putter can putt with anything.”