Going Round and Around
Where she stops nobody knows…It is Master’s week in Augusta, Georgia. Let me tell you it is as exciting the anticipation of a new monarch, but wait there is a monarch coming or should I say coming back. I am of course talking about Mr. Tiger Woods.
The only one on the tour to boast multiple wins this season, he comes to the years first major as the favorite to win. I want to see Tiger win Augusta this week and I want to see him go on to break Jack Nicklaus’ record and silence the critics. I still have no personal love for the fellow, but I respect the athlete.
I do want to switch reels here a bit and talk about the Masters and the legendary course which it is played at annually. Now I am a California girl through and through (never mind I was born in Kansas City,Mo.). I don’t think any place is prettier than my claimed state, the wonderful beaches, the wonderous mountains, the deserts and forest are worthy of awe. However, since my migration south almost 20 years ago I have never seen anything as beautiful as Augusta National.
If you pull it up on the internet you see will photos that will make you question their authenticity. Some of my clients have photos which look like paintings and it is simply the lush beauty of that place. It is arguably, the St Andrews of the U.S.A.
Build on a former Indigo Plantation (yeah of course plantation), co-founded by golf legend Bobby Jones and racist(yes over simplified but true) Clifford Roberts both fame and infamy surround this prestigious course.
Every hole is named for a thing of beauty(Azalea, White Dogwood,etc.), a tree and a pond dedicated to President and a corner that has made the “greats” beckon to God, Almighty for favor. Yet in paying homage to its beauty, and grandeur the history of Augusta must be touched upon. I talked about the site itself being built on land and the type of establishment whose very name (plantation) constantly reminds America of injustice it saddled African Americans with. Being in the south and producing the rebellious, foul persona of “Jim Crow”; Augusta National held onto some of “his” very ideology until 1975 when Lee Elder competed there, or was it 1990 when the FIRST African American, Ron Townsend, was permitted to join the club, no wait was it when Tiger Woods won his first Masters in 1997? I don’t know which one to cite. Let me NOT forget that they proudly allowed the first women(ooh… more than one) to join in the club 2012, talk about a time warp and living in the past.
The PGA has a lot of growing to do and it is growing slowly, but not nearly as slowly as the traditions which it holds onto favorably and embraces. I am not saying they(the PGA) condone what has gone on at Augusta, simply that there is an air of acceptance or need to excuse these behavoirs, because of these same so-called traditions.
The south has a somewhat skewed vision of what tradition means (i.e. rebel flag; heritage not hate). If you continue living you must accept the fact you must move and change with the times. As I scrolled through the photos this morning from Augusta’s Official Web Site (titled random pictures) I couldn’t help but notice that out of 236 photos only 10 of them had African Americans in them and 2 with people of Asian descent. Now that’s diversity. I thought of how the man who co-founded the club, who I characterized as racist( Clifford Roberts), made a statement that was in essence saying that “blacks will always be caddies and whites will always be golfers on HIS course, as long as he lived”. I am thrilled he lived to see that fall apart. I also feel sort of apathetic that he chose to commit suicide on the par three course 2 years after his proclamation was no longer a truth. Was this a coincidence,was it his failing health, or was he a prime example of one who didn’t want to change? He was 84.
Now I am going to bring you back to my “round and around”, “the more things change the more they stay the same”, and “fools who do not know history are destined to repeat it” point. When I see Tiger Woods, I know these times are changing in the sport of golf, whether or not anyone, including Mr. Woods(the self proclaimed “cablasian”) wants them to. In his quest to be the greatest, he will forever be placed in the annuls of history as the African American Golfer who could and did….THAT IS NOT A BAD THING!
One by one we watch these representatives of “a time gone by” crumble and fall, because they are built on faulty or unstable ideals. Triumphant figures from a “Gone With The Wind” type society fade into oblivion, taking the dark side and secrets with them. Only to be resurrected continuously, minus the negatives.”Pleasantville” lives in DisneyWorld, and it is the last stop before you reach “The Land of Oz“. Translation the life you seek is a fantasy, that exists in your dreams. Wake up the world is changing right before your eyes, like it or not. Enjoy The Masters.