Word Count: 328


Annual Pilgrimage to Golf’s Mecca

Otherwise known as The Masters in Augusta, GA.

I’m not Catholic, but I do respect its liturgy and how they honor their religious customs and traditions.

Last September, I watched with reverent curiosity and some humor, as Pope Francis folded himself into his little Fiat and zipped around NYC from one scheduled event to the next.                                      My devotion to golf is different.                                                                          I played golf for forty years until my partner in a two-man scramble tournament suggested, “You should play for one more month, then quit.”               I did.                                                                                This same partner once offered me the nicest compliment I’ve ever received about a critical golf shot: ”Nice out”, he yelled from the center of the fairway while I played from a grassy knoll located in a gated community at least one zip code from the golf course.

Call me selfish, but as I approach the Autumn of my life, I appreciate the value of time.  My time.  Every hour wasted is gone forever.                                                                Golf not only disrespected my time, it rarely offered a quid pro quo.  Ruining my day was par for the course.                                                                                                          Now I’m a spectator.

I’m witnessing the annual Exodus to golf’s Mecca and its concomitant worshipping of the golf Gods:                                   The Masters.

I love everything about watching The Masters…first, there’s golf’s premier players competing for a major championship, then the visual splendor of a golf course that celebrates Springtime with its edenic beauty; you can’t ignore the unmistakable white overalls worn by Masters’ caddies and the respectful, even reverential, behavior of the crowd.

As I watch from the comfort of my home on a device that’s more than a TV – it’s a Super UHD, 4K, 2160p – it’s precise images give me the feeling that I’m there!  I never talk when players tee off and I hold my breath when they stand over a putt.                                                                          I even pay my wife to bring me a beer.

Just kidding.  She’s on a cruise.