Van Cynical Mailbag: Can We Rule Tiger Woods Out for the Masters?

March 24, 2016

Due to technical difficulties, my Masters ripoff of Johnny Carson’s Carnac gig did not appear in its entirety in my recent video turn at SI Golf+ on

You remember Carnac, right? Johnny dressed up in a turban and cape and pretended to ascertain the answer to a question sealed in an envelope. It was always the punch line, of course, to the question he was about to read. The answers, as sidekick Ed McMahon would explain, had been sealed in a mayonnaise jar on Funk and Wagnall’s porch since noon and no one—no one!—knew the contents.

Anyway, here are some of Van Cynical’s divinings about the Masters that did not appear in the video.

MASTERS: Visit’s Masters Tournament Hub

What? Yes, the mighty Van Cynical knew you were going to say that…

Answer: The champions locker room.
Question: Where do you go at the Masters to get away from Greg Norman?

Answer: The Eagles, the Beach Boys and Gary McCord.
Question: Name three famous bands. (Or banned, in McCord’s case. Yeah, weak.)

Answer: Burnt Biscuits, Stovepipe and Lead Pipe.
Question: Name two Masters caddies and a murder weapon.

Answer: Herbert Warren Wind.
Question: What usually broke on the clubhouse veranda after Herbert Warren had the cabbage soup for lunch?

Answer: Azleas, magnolias and Clifford Roberts.
Question: Name three things in the ground in Augusta.

Heeeeeeeere’s the Van Cynical Mailbag:

Hey Cynical Van, With still no news about Tiger, can we now rule him out of the Masters?—The Bogey Train via Twitter

He’s not out until he says he’s out, Chooch. He’s probably out, yes, but probably isn’t definitely, absolutely. But I wouldn’t draft him on my fantasy Masters team, if that’s what you’re asking.

Hey Van Cynical, No matter where Arnie’s tourney is held, if you get an invite, you attend, PERIOD. Your thoughts?—Michael (Mannix) O’Connor via Twitter

No excuse, Mannix, agreed. I don’t care if you drove in and had lunch with The King or showed up with a bad back and hung around with Golf Channel for a couple of hours, you still should’ve played. Did Arnie decide not to build a hospital because it wasn’t a perfect fit for his schedule or because he was slightly inconvenienced? As long as he is alive, you show up and play, no excuses. If you’re a tour player, you’re here with a stupid pension and a courtesy car because Arnie lived.

VAN SICKLE: DeChambeau Has the Stuff to Beat the Game’s Best

Hey Custom Vans, Why does every tourney in Texas have a western/cowboy/shootout type build up on TV? Such storyline gets old fast.—Brian Bailey via Twitter

You mean a fakey premise with unbelievable characters and stock cliches, Bailstorm? Sounds like every sitcom ever made. NBC probably guilty of trying the hardest, with all Snake Pit crap at Innisbrook. Nobody calls it that. And why Innisbrook wants to promote snakes in its name and logo stupefies me. Hello, most people don’t like snakes and don’t want to play a golf resort that has snakes. Anyone home in marketing?

Cynical Man, Agree with you that NCAA golf is a team game but why not set up NCAA Championship like a PGA Tour stop, individuals paired by rankings.—Frank Darby via Twitter

That’d be great but college golf is a fiefdom run by a handful of power conference coaches. They don’t run it for the benefit of the NCAA or the individual players, they run it for the benefit of their schools and their conferences. The last thing they want is some good individual from a non-power school—like Troy Merritt from Boise State a few years ago—coming in and beating their guys. It’s extremely difficult for a player from a non-ranked school to even make the NCAA Champioship field as an individual. So good idea, Darb, but they won’t let it happen.

Hey Sickle sale, Different eras have their own Big Three. Who preceded Hogan-Snead-Nelson? Jones-Hagen Sarazen?—David Troyan via Twitter

Pretty much, TroyStory. You can go all the way back to the Great Triumverate of Vardon, Taylor and Ray. Or even farther back, Old Tom Morris, Young Tom Morris and the much lesser-known Itty Bitty Teeny Weeny Tom Morris.

Van Conical, What are you talking about, there are no upsets in 18-hole match play? I get upset beyond belief when I play an 18-hole match?—Brian Baily via Twitter

You’re upset, Bailsafe? How do you think the greenskeeper feels every time you go out to play, knowing you’re the Tasmanian Devil of divot-makers?