I Prefer Augusta National In Moderation

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I love the Masters more than anything. I revere it. An Augusta National Golf Club membership isn’t happening and that’s okay. A tee time is unlikely which is fine too. A lot of people get on at Cypress, but not Augusta. I like that.

I imagine what it’s like to be a member there. Is there a bag drop at the end of Magnolia Lane? I bet there’s a bartender with a joke for every occasion. I’m certain the pro shop floor squeaks and creaks with each step. The selection of locker-room grooming products is surely fit for royals.

From the first hole “Tea Olive,” to the 18th “Holly,” each bursting bloom hole is shaped like the Gardens of Versailles. The back nine is a song we love and know by heart. The greatest stories ever told are written in the evening shade on Sundays. Tiger’s theatrics were phenomenal, Mickelson’s too, Nicklaus in 86’ was brilliant, but for me Crenshaw in ’95 was the greatest. Front runners are blindsided by disaster because Augusta National is a slippery slope in the purist sense. And occasionally an unsung hero rises from obscurity to grab the gold medal and run.

Each hole at ANGC is named after a flowering or aromatic tree or shrub

Some things are better left to the imagination. Oz should’ve stayed behind the curtain and I don’t want to see photos from Tuesday night’s Champions Dinner. Let the mind wander about 30 green jackets reminiscing over Cabernet and a champion-choice menu. Each knowing they have a lifetime invite to the most exclusive club dinner in the world. And while Immelman and Weir aren’t Nicklaus and Player – they’re invitations read the same.

I don’t want to know who any of the 300 ANGC members are or what the initiation fee is. I’d rather not see media credential acceptance letters – not interested in rejections either. I like and follow, but I’d be fine without Masters social media. The 56-minutes-an-hour coverage thanks to IBM, AT&T and Mercedes-Benz is well enough.

Couldn’t keep my eyes off the Women’s Amateur, and Drive, Chip & Putt is every child’s dream, but that’s enough! No more. Am I wrong for wanting less traffic on Amen Corner? Like grandma’s china, once a year is plenty. I want Greg Norman to have a green jacket, Trevino and Els too, but no more changes because Augusta’s perfect.

Here’s hoping the preeminent behind-the-gates-club stays that way.

One of these men will put on a green jacket in Butler Cabin on Sunday night
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