Friday, March 23, 2007

It's Just Around the Corner!

We had our first little thunderstorm earlier today!

Not exactly something that deserves an exclamation mark at the end of the sentence but when it's a precursor to melting snow, warmer weather and golf, well, an exclamation point it gets.

It's very wet right now but if the temperatures continue to stay where they are, we might be on the golf course by Masters week. We are way behind where we were last year, as I played four rounds before the middle of April but the winter came late in '07 and has stuck around a bit longer than usual.

No matter. It's almost here!

I got together with Bernie a couple days ago for a beer (OK, two beers) at the club. We were to meet up with a few guys who are interested in joining our regular group on Saturdays but they didn't show up. Not off to a good start boys...we already have too many unreliable guys in our group...

I'll give them another shot. I'm the guy who gets grief from the pros, however, as I'm the one who sets the tee times every week. Don't know who I pissed off to get that job!

Regardless, I had a nice chat with Bernie, his buddy Dave and a few others that stopped by during the hour or so I was there.

One of those was Cam, our assistant pro, who indicated that there may be big changes for the Niagara Cup this year, the annual team competition among clubs in the region.

If you're a regular reader of this site, you know I've participated in the competition for the last few years and have been lucky enough to do pretty well. It's modeled after the Ryder Cup competition in that it's all match play and there are two-balls, scrambles and singles matches. There are eight guys per club who participate: seven members and a pro.

Well, it looks like there is some serious downsizing planned for this year, as only THREE members will participate with the pro. A lot of the other clubs had trouble putting together 8-man teams and even when they did, the talent pool was pretty thin.

Well, that pretty much ensures that I won't be playing this year!

I'm just not good enough to crack the top three at our club - there are just too many fine players.

In other news, I'm in the market for new irons and wedges this year. I'm a complete Taylor-Made whore these days so the new R7 TP's are looking like winners to me, although they look a bit thick up top. I lack consistency in my ball striking so the forgiving nature of these clubs over pure blades is something that appeals to me. I'm currently playing the Taylor-Made 300's so there likely isn't too much of a difference in looks - I just hope the technology in the new irons has advanced to the point where it's worth the upgrade.

I'm currently using Cleveland wedges in the gun metal finish. I love those things but I'm essentially playing without grooves right now. I should have replaced them last year so new wedges are long overdue. I'll either stay with Cleveland, go to the Titleist Vokeys or go with Taylor-Mades.

Any opinions from my peanut gallery?

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Shot Down!

Well, word has come in on the Big Vote at the golf club.

The membership at St. Catharines overwhelmingly shot down the proposal put forth by our board of directors to investigate an opportunity to move to a different location by a ratio of 80% to 20%.

Interestingly enough, 26% of the club's shareholders didn't participate in the vote but it wouldn't have mattered either way, as the proposal needed a 66% approval rate to go through.

I have no problem saying that I was one of the 79 members who voted to go forward with investigating the proposal. But from past posts here, I'm sure you all knew that already...

You can see what I initially said about the 'intrigue' here. I then wrote another article about the general shareholders meeting here.

I can't say I'm surprised with the result but I'm ultimately disappointed that we're not going to get the chance to even explore this a bit further.

I'm also disappointed for Ian Andrew, the proposed architect of the new course. I'll repeat now what I told Ian in person after the information session at the club: I just hope he gets the chance to build that golf course on that site.

I'll be among the first in line to play it, that's for sure.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Is that the Toaster Popping?

Do I smell something burning?

Heck no! It's just my buddy Toast celebrating his 13th birthday today!

I haven't received an invitation to his Bar Mitzvah yet and I'll tell you, I'm a bit disappointed. I bought him this beautiful Jerusalem compass for the occasion.

Toast is very religious, prays three times daily like a good boy (mostly at the poker table on all-ins) and often shuns golf on Sunday mornings for synagogue. This compass is perfect for him and will help keep Jerusalem on his mind and in his heart.

Unbelievably, while every other compass points north, this one always points to Jerusalem! It simply defies nature!! Israeli technology is a wonderful thing. Maybe I'll hold on to it and give it to him at his second bar mitzvah...that's only 70 years away!

I'm also going to make sure my young friend checks out the OKCupid! Nice Little Jewish Boy site. He's getting to the age where he's getting interested in gals so where better to start than an online Jewish dating service?

I'm partial to question number seven myself!

7. What is the epitomie of a "Nice Jewish Girl"?
Barbra Streisand
Mayim Bialik ( She played 'Blossom' on TV)
Natalie Portman
Sasha Cohen ( a figure skater)

Got to go with Portman there, although Blossom was pretty cute back in my day!

Happy birthday Toasty! Aleikhem Shalom!

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Movie and TV Recommendation

Jacky and I purchased a HDTV a couple months back and we decided to go the full monty and get the Movie Network with the HD package, as there were two stations specifically with High-Def movies.

Basically, I just use the remote TV Guide and scan the whole week for decent-looking flicks, then tape them on the PVR. I watched one of them on the weekend - Lucky Number Sleven.

I can't say I had high hopes for the flick but a co-worker recommended it as a good one and he usually has good taste.

What an entertaining movie!

The thing has a bunch of stars in it: Morgan Freeman, Josh Hartnett, Bruce Willis, Lucy Liu, Ben Kingsley, Stanley Tucci, Danny Aiello...the list goes on.

Basically, the Josh Hartnett character is a kid in the wrong place at the wrong time, shacking up at a buddies place and getting mistaken for him by two of the baddest gangsters in town (Freeman and Kingsley). The buddy owes both these guys mucho dinero and the bad guys don't really care whether the wise-ass Hartnett is the deadbeat or not...they just want their money.

Another twist is that the gangsters want each other dead as well and are willing to 'forget' about the cash if Hartnett offs the other guy.

The dialog is crisp and the plot, while convoluted, is interesting. The acting, even Hartnett, is uniformly excellent and there is style to burn. Beautifully shot movie.

I was really surprised by both Hartnett and especially Liu, who always plays cold characters or 'bad girls'. She was REALLY adorable in this movie and a lot of fun, completely playing against type.

Three stars out of four from this reviewer and highly recommended. You'll be entertained, I guarantee it.

I also started watching NBC's 'Heroes' about a month and a half ago. It took me two episodes to realize that this is easily the best show on television and it gets BETTER every week.

Hard to sum up the show but essentially there are a number of people with special powers that are all connected in some way. There is also a very, VERY evil guy who is hellbent on killing every single one of these 'heroes' in order to gain all of their powers himself.

My wife called it 'a poor man's X-Men' after her first viewing but even she warmed up during last weeks episode that centered around Bennet, or HRG (Horned Rim Glasses) as he's affectionately known and his teenage daughter Claire.

The show is now on hiatus for five weeks or so. Therefore, there is no better time to start watching then now...they will likely repeat a bunch of shows so you can catch up.

Trust me on this one...you won't be disappointed. It destroys '24', the only other TV show I watch...and I still love that too.

EDIT: I'm an idiot - I originally put that it was Sam Jackson in the movie as opposed to Freeman. Thanks to anonymous for pointing out my error...shouldn't blog past 1am I guess.

Thursday, March 01, 2007

Winter Doldrums

Not much going on at Now on the Tee these days...

Here it is, March 1st, only 20 days from Spring and we're in the midst of an ugly winter storm. It's becoming difficult to imagine actually playing golf this month, something that did happen last year during March.

The Sabres continue to play fantastic hockey despite losing eight starters over the past nine games due to injury. The most controversial of the injuries took place a week ago in Buffalo when captain Chris Drury was on the receiving end of a brutal check from Ottawa's Chris Neil.

Drury split his head open on the ice after being knocked unconscious by the force of the hit and mayhem ensued. A full scale brawl broke out and included both goaltenders - the game was a fixture on late night highlight shows and made headlines on Canadian and US national news.

I was lucky enough to be there and it was truly one of the best games I've ever seen live. Not just because of the fights but the drama of the hit, the aftermath and the game itself, which ended with Buffalo prevailing 6-5 in a shootout. You can check out my thoughts on the game at
Bleeding Blue and Gold, my Sabres blog.

Just a great game and the much-hyped rematch was just as good. The depleted Sabres fell behind by three goals but stormed back to eventually tie. They would ultimately lose 6-5 in the contest but their squad, filled with green rookies, played admirably.

What a fun team to watch!

I had to essentially give a cup of my blood to the organization today, as the deadline to pay up for playoff tickets was about to pass. All kidding aside, the Sabres continue to treat their fans with class, putting through only a marginal increase for the playoff ducats. Still, I had to pay upfront for two full rounds (8 games times 2 tickets per game) and also had to put up a 20% deposit for next year's seats. This is due to the fact that the team offered season ticket holders a deal where the first round would be at regular season prices if you fronted some cash for next season.

Meh. I saved $80.00 US so I'm happy.

Not much else going on. I'm back on the membership and marketing committee at the golf club this year and also volunteered for a subcommittee to write a marketing plan for the club.

The whole experience on the committee has been an eye-opener without doubt - the shear amount of political bullshit at the club is staggering. But the club needs some younger voices so I'll continue to provide mine, even if it doesn't get heard in the end. I just want the place to thrive like it really should...