Need more proof that golf is cool? Just look around. Bill
Clinton plays golf; Bob Dole doesn't. Who wins the election? A
coincidence? We think not. Michael Jordan plays golf and wins
the NBA championship. Pop singer Alanis Morissette includes golf
in the lyrics of a song on her Jagged Little Pill CD and goes
home with all the Grammys, as avid hackers Hootie and the
Blowfish had done the year before.
Golf is so over-the-top cool that hard-rock icon Alice Cooper
appears in Callaway commercials. "Ten years ago, if people had
found out that I played golf, I would've lost every one of my
fans," Cooper says. "In every rock band I know now, guys with
long hair and tattoos play golf. It's not an old man's game or
uncool anymore. And what's more rebellious--drinking all day or
going to where the enemy lives and beating him?"
Hollywood has bought the concept. Two movies featuring the game
were released in '96, Happy Gilmore and Tin Cup. Even the
Doh-boy, dimwitted Homer Simpson, teed it up this year. In an
episode of The Simpsons in which the family considers joining a
country club, Homer gets a lesson from Tom Kite, who calls Homer
So was John F. Kennedy, we discovered this year while reading
Presidential Lies, although JFK felt his knack for golf was a
political liability, so he kept it under wraps. How times have
changed. Last spring Arnold Schwarzenegger paid $772,500 for
Kennedy's old clubs. How cool is that? Almost as cool as Tiger
Woods, whose captivating quest pumped us up as the season wound
Golf was too cool in 1996. Were you? Check your Cool Quotient,
and knowledge of the people, places and events that made news
this year, by taking the following tests.
Select the correct answer to the following questions.
1. On Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, Will Smith's character got a
putting lesson from
a. Tiger Woods.
b. Lee Trevino.
c. Scott Hoch.
d. Regis Philbin.
2. Jay Haas and Fred Couples appeared in a Hootie and the
Blowfish music video that one magazine named the worst of the
year. The name of the song was
a. Only Wanna Be with You.
b. Only Wanna Catch My Plane.
c. Girls Just Wanna Have Fun.
d. Last Time Ever I Saw Your Clubface.
3. During the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am, televised by
CBS, a makeshift celebrity shoot-out was held when Saturday's
round was rained out. When the competition ran late, the
celebrities skipped the 16th hole, prompting irate spectators
waiting there to shout:
a. "Na-na-na-na, na-na-na-na, hay-ay-ay, gooood-bye."
b. "N-B-C! N-B-C! M-C-I! M-C-I!"
c. "Look out! Bruce Dern is flying the blimp!"
d. "Free Ben Wright!"
4. Why did Greg Norman fail to win the Masters this year?
a. He blew a six-shot lead on Sunday.
b. He blew an eight-shot lead on Sunday.
c. He blew a 13-shot lead on Sunday.
d. The dog ate his yardage book.
5. Pennsylvania governor Tom Ridge, announcing last spring he
would try to qualify for the Senior tour, gave what reason.
a. "I'm already playing four days a week."
b. "Somebody--anybody--has got to stop Jim Colbert before it's
c. Pursuing a place on the tour has been "a lifelong dream."
d. "I love playing executive courses."
6. Later the same day, Ridge said that his announcement was a
practical joke. What was supposed to be the tipoff?
a. Ridge released his announcement on April 1.
b. A tour official named A. Peryl Fuehls was quoted in the press
c. The first letter of each paragraph in the release spelled
d. Ridge had claimed he carried a two handicap.
e. All of the above.
7. In the movie Down Periscope, Kelsey Grammer (of Frasier)
plays an unconventional submarine commander. In one scene he
hits a golf ball off the deck toward a green on shore and shouts:
a. "Get up there, you miserable little puke!"
b. "God, I hope I don't flip this thing over on the median, too."
c. "Oh, Mama! Run silent, run deep!"
d. "Give me those binoculars, Ensign. Isn't that...it is! That's
Greg Norman over there on that hill, and, my god, he's just hit
into the water!"
8. After the third round of the Northern Telecom Open in Tucson,
Keith Fergus was hitting balls on the practice range when
suddenly he and his caddie started shouting and running down the
1st fairway. "There were hundreds of them," Fergus said later.
"They swarmed after us." What were they running from?
a. Angry villagers.
b. Pro-am partners.
c. CBS announcer Peter Kostis and his crew.
9. Steve Jones, who couldn't play golf for three years after a
dirt-bike accident, wrote a Cinderella story when he came back
to win the U.S. Open, beating Davis Love III and Tom Lehman.
What book did Jones credit with inspiring him to victory?
a. Rush Limbaugh Is a Big Fat Idiot.
b. ... And the Horse You Rode In On, by J.C. Snead.
c. Hogan, a biography of Ben Hogan.
10. Kenny Perry played poorly on the first playoff hole and lost
the PGA to Mark Brooks. Perry didn't warm up before the playoff
despite having to wait more than 30 minutes, and later admitted
that he might have made a mistake. Where did Perry spend those
a. Locked in a portable toilet.
b. In the CBS tower, talking with Jim Nantz and Ken Venturi.
c. In the locker room, listening to Snoop Doggy Dogg's new CD.
d. In the locker room, speed-reading a copy of Hogan that he had
borrowed from Steve Jones.
11. "I didn't know what I was doing when I wrote it. Maybe even
I don't understand the second half of it." Who said it, and what
was he talking about?
a. Adam Sandler on Happy Gilmore.
b. Michael Murphy on his mystical novel, Golf in the Kingdom.
c. Gary McCord on his instruction book, Golf for Dummies.
d. Roberto DeVicenzo on his '68 Masters scorecard.
12. Italy's Costantino Rocca would've received a two-shot
penalty at the U.S. Open for using a tee to move something that
was in the line of his putt if officials hadn't later agreed to
waive the penalty. What did Rocca move?
a. Brent Musburger.
b. Bird droppings.
c. Colin Montgomerie.
d. Out-of-bounds stakes.
13. The worst drive of 1996 belonged to
a. Robert Allenby. While in Spain nursing a sprained ankle, he
smashed his car into a traffic barrier and fractured his sternum.
b. Robert Allenby. Recovering from his fractured sternum and
unable to swing a club, he bunted a shot 40 yards off the first
tee at the Volvo Masters and then withdrew. European tour rules
required him to tee off to collect $116,070 in bonus money,
which Allenby donated to charity.
c. Ian Baker-Finch, on any number of occasions.
d. All of the above.
14. Nine-year-old Randi Wilson, playing golf for the first time,
made a hole in one on her first swing, sinking a 103-yard
five-iron shot in Seaforth, Ont. She went home after nine holes,
a. "I still like bowling better."
b. "All those men in funny clothes scared me."
c. "The 1st hole was great, but the rest of it sucked."
d. "I'm hungry."
15. Jack Nicklaus called it "the most exciting win I've seen in
the last 10 years." He was talking about
a. Bob Dole carrying Indiana.
b. The Scottish Claymores taking the World Bowl.
c. Tom Watson winning the Memorial.
d. Peter Jacobsen winning the U.S. Open in Tin Cup.
16. The AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am was canceled after two
rounds were played. Why?
a. Rain made the 16th hole at Spyglass Hill unplayable.
b. Everyone wanted to watch the 49ers' playoff game.
c. David Eger, the Tour's vice president of competition, uses MCI.
d. Tour players didn't want to get their shoes muddy.
17. Actor Kevin Costner, after playing in the celebrity
shoot-out at Pebble Beach, asked NBC's Roger Maltbie for a
putting tip, saying, "How do you get over that feeling that you
know you're going to miss it?" Maltbie said:
b. "Watch Tin Cup."
c. "Don't ask me. Johnny's the expert."
d. "You mean the same feeling you had when you were making
18. What was comedian Bill Murray in during the celebrity
shootout at Pebble Beach?
a. A cocktail dress.
b. Bib overalls.
c. Camouflage fatigues.
d. A fog.
19. Trick-shot artist Dennis Walters, performing his show at
Disney World, was horrified when he swung his three-wood and
accidentally struck and killed
b. Kathie Lee Gifford.
c. His costar, Mulligan the dog.
d. The Ohio State marching band.
20. What did Tiger Woods see after winning his first-round match
in the U.S Amateur?
a. Tin Cup.
b. The Lion King.
d. Dollar signs.
21. In a poll of the players taken at a collegiate tournament,
who came in fourth in a straw vote for President? (Bob Dole,
Steve Forbes and Bill Clinton finished one, two and three,
a. Cindy Crawford.
b. Rush Limbaugh.
c. Tiger Woods.
d. The artist formerly known as Prince.
Answers: 1-D. 2-A. 3-B. 4-A. 5-C. 6-E. 7-A. 8-D. 9-C. 10-B.
11-B. 12-B. 13-D. 14-C. 15-C. 16-A. 17-A. 18-B. 19-C. 20-A. 21-C.
Cool Quotient/Number of correct answers:
7-14 Not bad for an Olympic year.
0-6 Stick to tennis.
COLOR ILLUSTRATION: ILLUSTRATIONS BY PATRICK MILBOURN All manner of athletes, movie stars, musicians and politicians gave the game a boost in 1996. [Drawing of Bill Clinton, Alice Cooper, Tom Kite, Kevin Costner, Tiger Woods, Bill Murray, Homer Simpson, Michael Jordan, and Alanis Morisette on golf green]
COLOR ILLUSTRATION: ILLUSTRATIONS BY PATRICK MILBOURN [Drawing of Muhammad Ali and Jack Nicklaus]
COLOR ILLUSTRATION: ILLUSTRATIONS BY PATRICK MILBOURN [Drawing of Tiger Woods and others playing cards]
COLOR ILLUSTRATION: ILLUSTRATIONS BY PATRICK MILBOURN [Drawing of Jose Maria Olazabal riding llama]
Match the quote with the person who said it.
2. "Did you know that Kennedy and Lincoln had the same handicap?"
3. "It's longer and straighter."
4. "I've never had that many people follow me around on a
Thursday. They must've heard about my reputation."
5. "I refuse to play equipment that's inferior to what I've been
using for years. If I was a big enough whore, I'd go ahead and
do it. But I choose not to."
6. "Not too good."
7. "You took me for a joke. You took me for a child. You took a
long hard look at my ass and then played golf for a while."
8. "That shot was a half-shank from the pike position."
9. "We're not going to fight, are we?"
10. "If you guys would stop asking questions, I could get out on
the golf course."
11. "I'm going to walk up to him and tell him, 'If you don't
win, I'm here.'"
12. "You've just got to not concentrate."
13. "It's the worst piece of mess I've ever seen. I think they
had some sheep and goats there that died, and they just covered
A. Alanis Morissette, in Right Through You, a cut on the
Grammy-winning CD Jagged Little Pill.
B. Tennis player Todd Martin, to reporters after the U.S. had
swept Mexico in the Davis Cup.
C. Brad Faxon, paired with Tiger Woods in the first round of the
Tour Championship, on their large gallery.
D. Scott Hoch, on St. Andrews.
E. Patrick Burke, after spectators at the Doral-Ryder Open asked
how his father, a popular club pro in New Jersey who had died
four months earlier, was doing.
F. Homer Simpson.
G. Nick Faldo, describing how he triple-bogeyed the 8th hole at
H. Japan's Hidemichi Tanaka, when asked if he knew any English
I. Dr. Jack Kevorkian, on his intention to meet Jack Nicklaus at
the U.S. Open.
J. Bill Murray, discussing Hurricane Bertha with David Letterman.
K. Mike Hill, on why he uses irons made in the '70s and a
L. Will Smith's character on Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, when asked
how he keeps missing one-foot putts.
M. Jack Nicklaus, when he met Muhammad Ali at the PGA.
Answers: 1-H. 2-F. 3-J. 4-C. 5-K. 6-E. 7-A. 8-G. 9-M. 10-B.
11-I. 12-L. 13-D.
Cool Quotient/Number of correct answers: 10-13 Longer than
Tiger Woods. 5-9 Longer than Earl Woods. 0-4 Shorter than
THE TIGER TEST
Answer either true or false.
1. In his first tournament as a pro, Tiger's opening drive went
336 yards, he was four under par after the first six holes, and
he made a hole in one.
2. Confident that he would get his '97 Tour card by winning
enough in seven starts to make the top 125 on the money list,
Tiger didn't bother to pay the $3,000 entry fee for Q school
before the deadline.
3. While winning the Las Vegas Invitational, Tiger stayed in a
sprawling penthouse suite with a private elevator and a butler
at the MGM Grand.
4. Tiger was so far ahead in the NCAA Championship that he won
by four shots despite shooting 80 in the final round.
5. Part of Tiger's $2.2 million deal with Warner Books calls for
the creation of Eye of the Tiger, a monthly comic book based on
the adventures of a character named after Woods who plays
big-money golf in the rough-and-tumble world of the 23rd century.
6. Although he suffered a disastrous snowman in the first round,
Woods rallied and wound up as the low amateur in this year's
7. Tiger, who is 20, used a fake ID to board an over-21 gambling
boat on the Mississippi and play blackjack during the Quad City
8. Tiger turned down a role as Michael Jordan's caddie in Space
9. Despite agreeing to $60 million in endorsement deals with
Nike and Titleist, Tiger never carries more than $100 in cash.
10. In Portland after having won an unprecedented third straight
U.S. Amateur, Tiger beat Jordan in a game of H-O-R-S-E.
11. Scottish Open competitors were given a complimentary bottle
of liquor after the first round. Tiger, holding up his bottle
after shooting 81, said, "There may not be much of this left by
12. Everyone who attended the rescheduled Fred Haskins Award
dinner received a pair of Nike golf shoes autographed by Tiger.
13. When it was announced that there would be no playoff at the
Disney World/Oldsmobile Classic and that Tiger had won, the fans
14. Tired of Tiger, Woods plans to change his name to Tyrone
when he turns 21.
Answers: 1. True. 2. False. 3. True. 4. True. 5. False. 6. False
(Randy Leen was low amateur). 7. True. 8. False. 9. True. 10.
False (Woods has never met Jordan). 11. True. 12. False. 13.
True. 14. False.
Cool Quotient/Number of correct answers: 10-14 You could write
the book. 5-9 You should read the book. 0-4 Heard about the
WHO AM I?
Identify the players described below.
1. I was seven over par with nine holes to play in the second
round of the U.S. Open when my dad and four friends, who had
driven from North Carolina, packed up and left. I birdied 11,
eagled 12, then birdied 13, 14 and 15 to not only make the cut
but also shoot the second 29 in Open history. (Hint: I was also
the first to do it, last year.)
2. I tried a swing change (that was a load of rubbish), a sports
psychologist (that was a load of crap) and working out (that was
not for me) before finding a swing coach who told me not to
think too much and a back specialist who advised me not to
exercise. I went on to win three times on the European tour.
3. Even though I'm 67, I was fixing a leaky roof when I stepped
off a rafter and crashed waist-deep through the ceiling of my
powder room, dislocating my shoulder. My wife called 911, and
they came with all the bells and whistles. "You'd have thought I
killed Kennedy," I grumbled.
4. I got my exemption by closing with a 64 to win the Fieldcrest
Cannon Classic in Charlotte, one year after showing up at the
tournament only to discover I had forgotten to enter. Poetic
justice, I called it, because last year's mistake meant that I
had been unable to play in the minimum number of events required
to keep my card for '96.
5. At some point I was on the leader board in each of the four
major championships. I won in Hawaii, but you probably didn't
6. At the Australian skins game, I drove it past Tom Watson and
Peter Senior all day. I also won two majors in 1996.
7. I explored the possibility of using a pony, a llama or a cart
to help get me around the course but haven't played in a
tournament in more than a year.
8. I withdrew from the PGA Championship because I wasn't sure I
could resist the urge to punch someone. And I said that if I
bumped into Craig Parry, "I'd probably put him in a locker and
throw away the key." I had dinner with the President in 1994,
but not this year.
9. I shot 64 in the first round of the Canon Greater Hartford
Open but disqualified myself because the ball I used hadn't been
registered with the USGA.
Answers: 1. Neal Lancaster. 2. Ian Woosnam. 3. Don January. 4.
Trish Johnson. 5. Jim Furyk. 6. Laura Davies. 7. Jose Maria
Olazabal. 8. David Graham. 9. Greg Norman.
Cool Quotient/Number of correct answers: 7-9 Faster than
Michael Johnson. 4-6 Faster than Michael Jackson. 0-3 Slower
than Jose Maria Olazabal.