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January 19, 2006
Volume V, Issue 1
Fringe Clippings
A bigger den, can little cubs be far off?
According to the Palm Beach post, Tiger Woods has agreed to purchase a 10-acre piece of property on Jupiter Island, Fla. The price tag: $40-million. It runs from the Intracoastal Waterway to the Atlantic Ocean and includes four houses -- the main house, two guest houses and a beach house -- as well as two boat docks. Woods, who made more than $80-million in 2004 alone in endorsements and tournament earnings, has been looking for property on the water for some time. His main residence is in the Orlando community of Isleworth, where Woods can practice at a championship golf course just down the street. It is unclear whether he would make the Jupiter Island property his primary residence. On the other hand, $40 million for a weekend getaway seems a bit pricey, but then it's not exactly chump change for a primary residence either.
30's may be tough on a jogger, but just right for a golfer...
The hairline is receding under his Nike cap and the aches and pains from years of pounding golf balls are more apparent. It used to be nothing for Tiger Woods to train by running six to 10 miles, then doing it again the next day. "Now I need another day off,'' he said. Ah, Tiger is getting old. He turned 30 on Dec. 30. And he begins his 10th full season on the PGA Tour. But that hardly suggests any sort of dropoff is imminent. Woods, who is coming off a six-victory season that saw him win two major championships, knows all about golf history. "If you look at most of the guys' careers, it looks like their peak years are in their 30s,'' Woods said. "Hopefully that will be the case for me. Hopefully my 30s will be better than my 20s. That would be pretty neat to have happen.'' It sure would. Woods won 46 times on the PGA Tour in his 20s, putting him seventh on the all-time victory list. He trails only Sam Snead (82), Jack Nicklaus (73), Ben Hogan (64), Arnold Palmer (62), Byron Nelson (53) and Billy Casper (51). Let's see, if the 30's really are the best years for a golfer, could he pick up another 46 wins by the time he turns 40 in December 2015? Heck that would be a total of 92 wins. As my daddy used to say, "there's many a slip between the cup and the lip." Hey guys and dolls, this is not necessarily referring to golf, think coffee. As for Tiger and his totals at age 40, only time will tell.
Age is just a number, unless you mumble...
Vijay Singh turns 43 next month, but it is clear he has not yet slowed down. Although Singh did not win the season-opening Mercedes Championships, he did manage to find himself in a sudden-death playoff, which he lost on the first extra hole to Stuart Appleby. No shame there. Singh shot a final-round 66 to get into the playoff, then missed a 10-footer for birdie at the first extra hole while Appleby had a tap-in out of a bunker. Singh has won 16 times since his 40th birthday, just one behind the record held by Sam Snead.
Beware the fake golf club...
For some of us, it matters little. Callaway, TaylorMade . . . unless we are outfitted with a new swing and/or body, the brand name is irrelevant. That doesn't mean we want to pay for those brand names and get something else. Raids in China at the end of December resulted in numerous counterfeit golf clubs being confiscated with an estimated value of $500,000. Among the brands counterfeited were Callaway, Ping, Cleveland, Odyssey and Titleist.
Oh yeah, did ya get a green jacket, did ya, did ya?
Steve Williams was among the few people who were happy that Tiger Woods skipped the season-opening Mercedes Championships. Williams, who caddies for Woods, used his week off to race in the New Zealand Super Saloon Championship. A native Kiwi who races stock cars on dirt tracks, Williams won the race and said "Now I know how (Tiger) feels when he wins the Masters.''
Paralysis by Analysis
Ya think Tiger eats chips?
I am sure we are all going to try to stick to our new year's resolutions. Ahem.

So with that in mind I prepared some advice to take on the course with you that may actually help to keep that waist line in check and keep your mental... fo... cus... um... er... What was I talking about again? Oh yeah, food for the brain and body.

For those with Krispy Kreme stock the following may be tough to read.

You early tee time fanatics are first on the list. Mrs. Lipschitz back in the second grade was right, ya know. Breakfast is the most important meal of the day. It kick-starts your metabolism and sends a message to your body about how you will be fueling up for the day. Washing down the Big Grab, habañero-pepper roasted pork rinds with a Jolt cola is, as you might suspect, not the right message.

Try two eggs (cooked any way) and some oatmeal (bowl or bar). Have some all-natural fruit juice (natural sugars) to drink, and stick a banana or an apple in your bag to tide you over until the turn.

For those of you starting to play in the afternoon, have a turkey sandwich or bowl of soup for lunch. If you must have a side with your lunch, try fruit or veggies like carrot sticks, try to steer clear of the chips. Not only do they overload you with saturated fats, it's really tough to get that grease off your fingers and no one wants to accidentally fling their three iron into not so casual water.

Now because we have denied ourselves the big meal so far we are going to be having the tummy grumbles sometime during the round. Resist the Oscar Mayer urge and go for a bag of unsalted roasted peanuts, raisins or old faithful trail-mix. Yeah the nuts and trail-mix have fat, but fat processes slowly and your body will break it down slowly so you can maintain your energy.

Fruits, raw veggies, nuts, grains, etc. It's not like you've never heard this stuff before. Try to stick to it this year for once, and see if it makes a difference. As a matter of fact, why don't you tell me about it? I'll be the one smearing the barbecue sauce off my face with one hand and slurping down the "Heiney" with the other.

Seriously, we want to know about your golf resolutions for this year. Post yours now on the Fringe Forum.
Reading the Line
That's entertainment...
Sure she hasn't yet won a professional tournament, much less qualified on the PGA Tour, but she sure is fun to watch.  Yes, the Wie wonder continues her non-qualifying media hype trick, but I for one say it's just fine with me. It's good entertainment.  Of the 144 players competing in last week's 2006 Sony Open in Hawaii, 82 made the cut and 62 got the weekend off. Michelle was one of the 62 who went home. But before she left, she did entertain. After a disappointing opening round 79 on Thursday, she came back with a sizzling 68 on Friday. Of the 61 men who did not qualify, only one, Cory Pavin, shot a round of 68. All 60 other non qualifiers shot a 69 or higher. Heck, even Paul Azinger who came in 59th in the tournament did not shoot a 68. Yes his 69, 72, 70, 71 showed the consistency that places you in the dinero, but, the Wie wonder did shoot a 68. Wow, she is fun to watch. And that's entertainment. As a very big side note, congratulations to David Toms on winning with a brilliant 19 under 66, 69, 61, 65.
Come on guys, ya got to support the team...
It's not as if golf is an exhausting game. And the average guy sure is not going to feel sorry for a millionaire golfer who claims to be tired. But extending their off-season is the reason given by Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson for skipping the season-opening Mercedes Championships. These guys should have a bit more regard for the tour that has helped make them rich and famous. Sure golf is played by individuals against individuals unlike "team sports." Sure these guys are very much independent contractors without team contracts. But if the marquee golfers skip tournaments we might see many of the tournaments marginalized with both shrinking TV revenues as well as purses.
Nobody is suggesting that golfers play if they have injuries or family issues. But since their stated reasons for skipping were to get more down time, well, then they deserve some heat. Woods spent part of his off-season chasing appearance money in China and Japan. Perhaps he should have rested then. Mickelson also skipped the season-ending Tour Championship, another tournament for which he qualified but could not be replaced.
Wow, their timing is usually so perfect...
This is a particularly sensitive time for the PGA Tour, which is in negotiations for a new television contract. It looks like the networks are playing hard-ball and that the PGA will get less money for a product that has failed to deliver ratings. One reason might be that the top players don't always show up. Now you can't force them to play and it is within their rights to play when and where they want. But a better sense of timing would be appreciated. There was the PGA Tour showcasing its first tournament of the year with beautiful scenery from Hawaii -- and its top players weren't there. My daddy used to also say, "you don't want to bite the hand that feeds you."
An often over-looked giant...
His name is rarely mentioned among the greats of the game, but perhaps a new generation of golf fans will get to take notice of his career and judge for themselves. Billy Casper won 51 times on the PGA Tour, including three major championships, but his name is often the forgotten one when you try to rattle off the six players in history to win more than 50 times on the PGA Tour. Sam Snead, Jack Nicklaus, Ben Hogan, Arnold Palmer and Byron Nelson come to mind a lot more quickly.

Of course, Casper played in the era of Nicklaus, Palmer and Gary Player and was often overshadowed by that trio, even though he held his own against them during the 1960s. In fact, it was Casper who made one of the greatest comebacks in U.S. Open history, rallying from seven shots back with nine holes to play at the 1966 U.S. Open. He caught Palmer and then defeated him in an 18-hole playoff the next day.

Perhaps it has something to do with the lack of major championships. Or maybe it's the stars he competed against. But Casper might just get his due yet. Tiger Woods, with 46 victories, is closing in on Casper's 51. That should make us all take more notice of what Casper accomplished.

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