Chapter Six – The Tour de Golf Tours
Beginning this four-tours-in-five-days adventure with a Futures Tour pro-am was a no-brainer. In addition to furnishing me with the opportunity to actually take part in an event I was covering, the City of Hammond Classic would enable me to debunk the age-old saying, “You can’t go home again.” Sure enough, not only was visiting the Futures Tour like going home, it was like going home on Thanksgiving weekend, playing backyard touch football with all your cousins, and pulling the lucky end of the wishbone from the turkey. It was that comfortable.
Chapter Nine – Just Add Alcohol and Stir
Sunday morning came early to the lavish World Headquarters of the IGTS Tour. As soon as the first rays of light filtered through the blinds, I was wide awake and headed for the executive locker room to shower. What prompted this burst of energy on the sleepiest morning of the week? I was going to an NFL game!
Chapter Fifteen – Teachable Moments
As much as I wanted to definitively declare that smaller is absolutely better, at this point the hypothesis still needed more testing—mostly because I was finding that smaller can also be a whole lot more work. And I soon found out that, on occasion, it can also be downright painful.
Chapter Sixteen- The Mingle and the Mad Dash
As summer eventually capitulated to fall, an interesting thing began to happen—I noticed people edging away from me at cocktail parties.
Many months earlier when I had first announced my walkabout intentions, my friends, family, and colleagues were wildly intrigued. In addition to showing support at every turn, they were always anxious to hear the details of my travels to iconic venues and well publicized events. A pivotal lateseason Lakers game against San Antonio. Opening Day at Yankee Stadium. The U.S. Opens of both golf and tennis. March Madness. NASCAR. And being the attention-seeking miscreant that I am, I was more than happy to indulge their curiosity.
Chapter Eighteen – Communities of Sport
I had been in search of an opportunity to fold amateur tennis into the IGTS Tour schedule and had been therefore pleased to learn that the Pac-10 Conference Tennis Championships would be in Ojai, CA. Good fortune was smiling on me, I thought, because of all places in the roughly 6.4 gajillion square-mile region that the Pac-10 Conference covers, they chose to stage this championship in a place less than 100 miles away from my humble quarters. While hosting the event in a small town located a fair distance from any major metro area seemed a bit unusual, I wasn’t about to complain.
Chapter Twenty-Two – Wouldn’t It Be Ice If We Were Older
Curling is a sport of honor, tradition, and respect, the depth of which I had only seen in sumo wrestling. You are about as likely to see a taunt during a match as you are to see somebody using an AutoLoc dual-exhaust flamethrower as a broom. In the traditional beginning to a championship match, both teams are “piped on” to the ice by an actual live piper who typically plays “Scotland the Brave.” The teams then face each other and offer a toast of Drambuie (or ginger ale, where appropriate) and a simple but heartfelt, “Good curling.” And when it’s all over, the winning team buys a celebratory round of drinks for all concerned. Every time. No questions asked.