"What a stupid I am!" That was Roberto DeVicenzo's memorable self rebuke for signing a final-round scorecard at the 1968 Masters charging him with par on the 17th hole, when he had actually made birdie. The Argentine's gaffe obviated an 18-hole playoff with Bob Goalby and left DeVicenzo to ponder how glory could be lost to a clerical error.
"Tears," a wise man wrote, "are the safety valve of the heart when too much pressure is laid on it." That—and the fact that his coach and mentor, Harvey Penick, had died the week before—explains why Ben Crenshaw wept upon winning the 1995 Masters.
The scribes who covered Ben Hogan's victory in the '51 Masters filed their stories by Western Union or dictated their copy over pay phones. But then, as now, they labored in stale air and artificial light, oblivious to the tinkling sounds of celebration drifting down from the clubhouse.
THE FAKES: Crenshaw, A(Ben used a heel-shafted putter); Press Tent, A (no phone on the rear center pole); DeVicenzo, B (where are the kilties on his shoes?)
April 13, 2008
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