Another Angle — Major champions come through me

Another Angle — Major champions come through me

Golfers are superstitious.

I know that firsthand. My senior year of college golf, I would always, always shower before my round, eat two doughnuts and a banana on the way to the course, and listen to Coldplay in the van…that is, until I played poorly. Then I’d start a different routine.

But I didn’t know golfers were this superstitious.

You see, I’ve interviewed four golfers this year for Sports Spectrum. The first golfer I interviewed was Bubba Watson, who was featured in our Winter 2012 issue. Bubba won the Masters. The second golfer I interviewed was Webb Simpson, who was featured in our Spring 2012 issue. As we saw on Sunday, Webb won the U.S. Open.

Whoever I interview will undoubtedly win a major. It’s scientifically proven.

The third golfer I interviewed was Ben Crane, which, according to my track record, means he’ll win the British Open, even though he’s not currently part of the field. And the fourth was Aaron Baddeley, which means he’ll win the PGA.

Apparently, I have powers. And right after Webb won the U.S. Open and some zany (who was apparently a deforestation activist) disruptively clucked like a bird during the ceremony, word started to get out. Word started to get out that I was a golf prophet.

My cell phone started ringing, and I realized how superstitious golfers really were…

PHONE: Drop everything now, meet me in the pouring rain, kiss me on the sidewalk, take away the pain… (I wanted to be cool, so I made one of those ringtones on myxer.com with Taylor Swift’s “Sparks Fly.”)

“Hello,” I said.

“Hey, it’s Ben Crane.”

The Ben Crane? What’s up, man? I didn’t even know you had my number…or remembered me…or—”

“It’s good to talk to you, too, Steve,” he said, getting to the point. “I just had a quick question.”

“Sure, what’s up?”

“Rumor has it that I’m guaranteed to win the British Open since you interviewed me…”

“Eh, I hope so, I mean, you’re due,” I said, caught off guard and laughing nervously, wondering if he was joking.

“This better not be a hoax, Copeland,” he said, almost threatening. “I’m not even in the field right now, but I really believe this is going to happen. All the evidence backs it up.”

“I don’t know if it’s true…”

“I’m banking on this money,” he said conclusively. “And I plan on drinking Kool-Aid out of my Claret Jug come July 23.”

Then he hung up the phone.

PHONE: Drop everything now, meet me in the pouring rain, kiss me on the sidewalk…

“Hello.”

“G-day mate.” It was Aaron Baddeley.

“Hey,” I answered.

“So ye think Oi’m going to win the PGAaaa-eh?”

“Well, I mean, I hope you do, but I think this whole thing is just a big—”

“Neo woy, mate! Oi’m going to boi me woif and meself eh proivate plane with the extra—”

“No, man, you really shouldn’t—” I said quickly. But he had already hung up.

“Blasted bloke,” I murmured under my breath, trying to sound sexy and Australian like Aaron. Then I questioned myself, wondering if “blasted” was a British, Irish, Scottish, or Australian thing. I knew “bloke” was Australian because I remembered it being on the men’s restrooms at Outback Steakhouse. I decided I was Australian and sexy…and that I shouldn’t say words if I didn’t know their meaning.

PHONE: Drop everything now, meet me in the pouring rain…

“Hello.”

“Hey, is this Mr. Copeland?”

“Yes.”

“This is Sergio Garcia.”

“Hi.”

“Hey, I heard that if you interviewed me, I’ll finally win a major.”

“Nah, I don’t think it’s true.”

“Ah, figures. I knew I’d never win,” he said, incredibly sad, as if I was his last resort or something.

He sniffed, choked and said “Good bye,” then hung up.

PHONE: Drop everything now…

“What?” I said.

“Hey, Bubba here.”

“Seriously, man, if this is about the whole—”

“Hold up, I’ve got a few other people on the line.”

“What?”

“Hunter, you here?”

“Yes,” Hunter Mahan said.

“Rickie, you here?”

“Yes,” Rickie Fowler said.

“And Ben, are you here?”

“Yes,” Ben Crane said.

“Alright,” Bubba continued, “We, the Golf Boys, would like to negotiate a contract for 2013. Interview all four of us, and we’ll have a Golf Boys Grand Slam.”

“Guys, it’s really not like that…”

“I’ll give you $500 of Puma merch,” Rickie said, sounding as cool and Pumafied in person as I always imagined him sounding.

“I hate flat bills.”

“I’ll give you my helmet,” Ben said.

“No.”

“I’ll get you a year supply of food for Waffle House,” Bubba added.

Waffle House? I thought. Then I remembered that Waffle House for some unknown reason was the caterer at Bubba’s concert, Bubba Bash, and I thought of two of the most hilarious tweets I’ve ever seen that were exchanged between Bubba and Webb.

@bubbawatson: 1st trip to @WaffleHouse #awesome (Picture of his son, Caleb, at Waffle House)
@webbsimpson1: @bubbawatson I Davis Love that place man
@bubbawatson: @webbsimpson1 Kevin NA u don’t

“Still, no,” I said, “This is ridiculous.”

“Maybe I can teach you how to be a man and actually grow facial hair,” Hunter said, showing his frustration. “Yeah, we’ve seen your pictures online. You look younger than Beau Hossler.”

“Ohhhhhhh!” they all said, doing that “burn” thing people do.

“Oh oh oh oh ohh,” they all started singing like they sing in their video, repeating it 16 times.

I hung up.

PHONE: Drop everything…

“If this is about the U.S. Open—”

“Yes, I know this sounds crazy, but I just had a kid, and I was hoping to arrange an interview with you so my child will win the 2045 Masters.”

I hung up.

PHONE: Drop everything…

“WHAT?” I screamed, clenching my phone.

“It’s the USGA.”

“Like, all of you?”

“Yes, the whole USGA. Listen, we heard you work for a Christian sports magazine. Tiger is a professing Buddhist. That means he’ll never be featured in Sports Spectrum, right?”

“I don’t know,” I said. “I never imagined we’d be able to arrange an interview with Tiger…”

“Well, here’s our dilemma. If you don’t interview Tiger for the magazine, that means he’ll never win another major, and if he never wins another major, that means we won’t make money. We’ll give you a yacht, a year-round, all-inclusive trip to Scotland, and complete access to TPC courses around the country.”

Long pause.

“Seriously?” I said. Then I hung up.

PHONE: Drop everything…

“Yeah.”

“Hey, it’s Jack. Don’t interview Tiger Woods.”

I hung up.

PHONE: Drop everything…

“It’s Jim Furyk. I’ll give you a lifetime supply of five-hour energy. I have the connections to make that happen.”

“Dude, the USGA just offered me yacht.”

He hung up, cursing.

 

It’s not easy having all this power.

It seems cool—being a god, in a sense, controlling the fate of the golfing world. But in reality, it feels more like Peter Parker’s spider bite. It’s nice to have the power—swinging from building to building, preventing muggings, and swapping spit upside-down with Mary Jane—but there’s also a lot of responsibility and, worst of all, people count on you.

That’s why this whole ordeal has become such a headache, why I’ll never be able to write a pure, uncompromised golf article ever again. The bribes. The pressure. The desperate cries to be interviewed by Sports Spectrum. The fact that, to win a major championship, golfers first have to come through us. People think it’d be cool to be a god. Remember Bruce Almighty? But here’s the thing: That much control isn’t exciting. It just creates stress.

Like Peter Parker, my life, career, and identity will never be the same. I can no longer be a sports writer. Instead, I’m the gatekeeper to fame, green jackets, and millions of dollars. I’m a seer in one of those dark, peculiar tents with a crystal ball. And I don’t like it.

PHONE: Drop everything…

“Hello.”

“Hey, it’s John Daly.”

“Yes,” I said. “I’ll interview you.”

EDITOR’S NOTE: Stephen is completely delusional. We’re sorry.

By Stephen Copeland

Stephen Copeland is a staff writer and columnist at Sports Spectrum magazine. His column tackles sports and faith from another angle, whether it’s humorous, personal or controversial. Follow him on Twitter-@steve_copeland or email him at stephen.copeland@sportsspectrum.com.