12 brilliant ways to alter your schedule to watch more Open coverage from Royal Portrush
The 2019 Open Championship begins Thursday, July 18, at iconic Royal Portrush in Northern Ireland. While the host venue is not in Scotland or England, it shares the same time zone, which means it will present the same problem for U.S. viewers as all Opens do: Open coverage on TV and online begins really, really early in the morning.
In 2018, the first grouping teed off at Carnoustie at 6:35 a.m. local time. That translates to 1:35 a.m. across the pond on the East Coast of the U.S., while TV coverage kicked off at 1:30 a.m. ET. Given the extreme time change, we’ve put together a list of strategies you can undertake to alter your normal schedule and maximize the Open coverage you’re able to watch.
While these ideas are, admittedly, ambitious, if you’re bold enough to take them on, you won’t miss a single shot. Good luck. (NOTE: GOLF.com cannot be held liable if following the below advice disrupts your life in a negative manner.)
How to alter you schedule to watch The Open at Royal Portrush
1. Do as Tiger Woods does
It’s never a bad idea to take tips from Tiger, even when it comes to watching golf. But be warned, if you’re going to emulate Woods in this instance, you might not be very pleasant to be around.
Tiger is taking extreme measures in search of his 16th major. Though he was still in Florida’s Eastern Time Zone all last week, Woods was waking up at the absurd time of 1:00 a.m. ET each day (which would be 6:00 a.m. in Northern Ireland). In this way, Tiger was able to adjust for the time change long before arriving on the Irish isle. You can apply the same logic to watching The Open. Suffer the pain of early wake-ups in the lead-up to event, and you’ll be refreshed and ready to go by the time the opening round arrives.
2. Take a vacation to Western Europe
If Tiger’s plan is too aggressive for you, there’s a simpler (albeit pricier) option: take a last-minute vacation to anywhere in Western Europe. The rest of the UK and Ireland share the same time zone as Royal Portrush ((British Summer Time (BST) and Irish Summer Time (IST)) in the summer months, but much of Western Europe is only one hour ahead of Portrush, so a European holiday during Open week means you’ll be watching golf at the times you’re accustomed to.
3. Take a golf staycation
If a sudden, expensive trip to across the ocean is not in the cards for you (and, let’s be honest, it isn’t for most of us), you can always take a golf-focused staycation in your hometown. With the week off, you won’t need to worry about getting enough rest, so waking up at inhumane hours shouldn’t be a problem. Even better, the Open coverage should be done early enough to sneak in a round at your local muni.
4. Call-in sick
This is the easiest and most manageable ticket to Open bliss: just fake a cough and call-in to work sick. If you’re a stay-at-home parent, just “call-in” to your kids’ room, and let them know you’ll be unavailable for a few days. That will leave you freed up to live on the couch with your eyes glued on the screen for all four rounds.
5. Adopt a micro-sleeping routine (like Kramer in Seinfeld)
Another route to watch as much of The Open as possible is to take a cue from Cosmo Kramer taking a clue from Leonardo Da Vinci. In the Seinfeld episode “The Friar’s Club,” Kramer decides to start sleeping 20 minutes every three hours after reading a biography of Da Vinci. You could do the same, and time your naps for in between holes. Putt drops, lights out. But beware, this radical sleep schedule didn’t work out too well for Kramer, who ended up in the East River.
6. Take the whole month off
We can file this one in the “not-even-trying” category. To prove how much the Open Championship means to you, take the whole month off from work. If you’re not among the fortunate Americans with paid vacation time, sacrifice food or rent for the month and take it off anyway.
7. Fall for an online scam
Don’t want to miss work to watch The Open? No problem… “You can start making up to $750 a day working online from home…” This is one should be of special interest to any prospective victims of identity theft.
8. Record The Open and unplug
Not long ago, there was any easy solution to the problem presented in this article: just DVR or TiVo each round and watch it when you’re free (and awake). But in the modern internet-driven world, with social media and push notifications blasting off every second, there’s no way you can keep the spoilers at bay.
So if you still want to record The Open and watch it later, you’ll need to unplug completely. Just set up the recording on your preferred device, leave your phone at home and escape into the woods. Once your tech detox is complete, return to civilization and see for yourself how Tiger fared.
9. Align your schedule with your favorite pro
Whether you’re dying to see Tiger, Brooks Koepka, or anyone else doesn’t matter for this tip. Each pro will have one early tee time (4-10 a.m. ET), and one super, super early tee time (1-3 a.m. ET). Watch the earlier round before work and then take the day off for the other round.
10. Move to Hawaii and watch in primetime (and one day early!)
If you really want to alter your entire life and find the optimal location to watch the Open coverage each year, we have the place: Hawaii. Given the Island chain’s time zone (three hours behind the West Coast of the United States), if you picked up and moved to the 50th state you could watch all the Open coverage you want in primetime. Better yet, you’ll be watching it early. The first tee time for the opening round at Portrush will kick off the evening of Wednesday, July 17, around 7 p.m. in Honolulu.
11. Follow Balzac’s schedule
Famed 19th-century French novelist Honoré de Balzac is infamous for his bizarre sleep and work routine, one that you could adopt to watch more Open coverage. Balzac would wake up at 1 a.m. in the morning, and then work until around 9 a.m. before taking a nap, working more, then finally going to sleep at 5 or 6 p.m.
That schedule fits nicely with the Open schedule for those of you on the East Coast. Balzac is also rumored to have consumed as many as 50 cups of coffee a day. Go that route and you might not need to sleep at all.
12. Quit your job
Are you willing to lose it all just to watch The Open? If so, this is the quickest and easiest option.
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