The Masters is a great golf tournament, but more than anything it is an event.
Watching the best players in the world play on an amazing course in the first major of the year is just the start. A great start, but just part of the picture.
The Masters is party. A gathering place. It’s the gift shop, the concession stands, the picnic areas and more.
It is run with incredible efficiency and Southern hospitality.
However, make no mistake, for some every year, it’s a chance to commit the ultimate party foul – getting booted from the grounds with little chance of coming back.
Met two guys in the picnic area at the 12th hole today. Nice guys. High school buddies from Detroit who were reuniting for a day at Augusta.
While I was smoking a cigar, these two were double-fisted drinking cold ones from Masters green cups and they were going through them quickly.
We talked for awhile, had a nice conversation. Then they left for the grandstand at number-12 with two more adult beverages in hand.
Forty five minutes later, I made my way to the 12th bleachers. That’s when I heard voices screaming “Mike, Mike, Mike!.”
It was the pair from Detroit imploring me to come sit next to them in an empty seat next to them.
I obliged. Within minutes, I knew I’d made a mistake.
These guys had gone from likeable loudmouths to full-blown belligerent buffoons.
I was trying to get away ASAP.
They talked at an extremely high decibel level. Laughed at bad shots. Downed more beers, and continued to yell and scream until a security official came up and said “warning number one.”
Minutes after that, one of the guys asked a lady in front of him to “show me your —-.” He wasn’t asking to see her Masters badge.
I was done.
As soon as the group on 12 tee was off across the Hogan bridge, I was out of there.
Went back to the concession stand, grabbed a Diet Coke and club sandwich ($4). Stopped at a nearby table to eat and within 5 minutes a funny thing happened.
Two security guards came down the stairs at 12 grandstand with two “punished patrons” in tow.
There they went loaded onto a green and yellow SUV… driving off to Masters oblivion.
Their shoulders slumped and heads hung low as they rode away from Augusta forever.
The party was over.
They didn’t have a prayer on Amen Corner of coming back.