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Arnie’s handshake
Sunday, March 24, 2013
By Joe Logan

When NBC’s Dan Hicks and Johnny Miller welcomed Arnold Palmer into the booth at Bay Hill a few moments ago, Hicks joked that it was good to feel Arnie’s handshake again.

 

I totally agree – you never forget Arnold Palmer’s handshake.

 

It’s not that Arnie is one of those bone-crusher guys, not at all.   His is just a firm, friendly, manly handshake.  Two quick pumps and he releases.

 

What makes it so unforgettable is Arnie’s hand itself: it’s big and strong and as padded as a major league catcher’s mitt.  The fingers he wraps around your hand are as thick and beefy as sausages.  You feel like you’ve fallen into the embrace of a mama bear or something.

 

And I don’t care who you are, or what you can or cannot do for him, Arnie looks you in the eye, smiles and says it’s good to see you.  It’s one of the reasons Arnold Palmer is one of the great ambassadors the game has ever had.

 

 


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steve8x[3/25/2013 8:01:39 AM]
I’ve never seen anyone work a room like AP. When Commonwealth opened, I had the pleasure of shaking his hand at a cocktail party there. By the way, he arrived via helicopter.

Traci Lords 
My quality time with a porn star
Tuesday, March 19, 2013
By Joe Logan

Again, I come to you with a non-golf blog topic, but hey, when former porn star Traci Lords pops up in the news, as she did a couple of days ago, I started thinking about our time together.

 

Like my recent blog post about interviewing Dear Abby, my encounter with the then-luscious Lords dates back my pre-golf writer life, when I profiled stars and celebrities of all stripes for The Philadelphia Inquirer.  That’s what I was doing in 1989, when I was dispatched to Baltimore, where Lords was making her first legit post-porn career movie.  It was a 1950s period comedy called Cry-Baby, and it was directed by the film auteur John Waters, who was giving Lords her first big break.

 

What thrust Lords into the news this week was the rape case in Steubenville, Ohio, in which two high star school football players were convicted of raping a 16-year-old girl.  A revolting rape case became even more revolting and notorious when high school kids posted photos of the victimized girl in the internet.

 

Lords, now in her 40s and long gone from porn, says her life was changed forever when she, too, was raped in her native Steubenville, when she was a 10-year-old named Norma Kuzma.

 

If you’ll recall, Lords rocked the porn industry in the mid-80s, when she announced that every porn film she had ever appeared in – and there were a bunch of them – were actually made when she was 15, 16 and 17 years old -- underage.  Her entire body of work, so to speak, was quickly yanked from the shelves, except for one film, Traci, I love You,  which was shot two days after she turned 18.

 

Naturally, for the sake of investigative journalism and thorough preparation for the interview, I made it my business to come up with a copy of Traci, I Love You...Yowza!

 

When I interviewed her, Lords had turned 21 only three weeks earlier and she was still very hot, hot, hot.  It was early afternoon when I arrived at her hotel in Baltimore, along with the movie’s publicist, but Lords was only then waking up.  That’s because they’d were in the midst of shooting night scenes at a park in Baltimore, and the actors and crew were working from sundown to sunup.  Her hotel suite was dark, quiet, almost eerie.

 

Here’s a snippet from my story in the Inquirer: 

 

"Hello," says a cheerful Lords, as the door opens.

She is a vision. Tiny, 5 feet tops. Long, straight blond hair that falls onto her shoulders. A cute, almost childish face. And even though the blinds are drawn, who could help but notice that nature has been generous to this young woman in many places and ways.

Packed, as she is, into a tight spandex top and long flowing skirt, it is also abundantly clear why she was the rage of the porn industry as a mere teen. But it's also obvious that she's very young. What smut king couldn't have seen that this girl was underage?

"Well," says the publicist, excusing himself, "I'll leave you two alone."

Lords stands in the center of the hotel room and smiles, almost shyly.

"Can I get you some Coke?" she asks.

Ah, excuse me?

"Yeah. Coke, 7-Up, ice water?"

Ohhh, Coke. Sure.

 

You’re welcome.

 

 

 

 

 

 


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karen steel[3/25/2013 6:32:18 PM]
ew. yes, your meeting with a not-quite-underage porn star was really worth revisiting, panting and all. gross

Looking for a golf course in Clearwater?
Wednesday, March 6, 2013
By Joe Logan

If you’re headed to Phillies spring training camp and wondering about where to play golf in the Clearwater area, here are suggestions from a golf writer friend of mine in nearby Safety Harbor:

 

As for recommendations, a very good semi-private pubic fee course is in a small town about 15 miles north of Clearwater. The course is Fox Hollow and located in New Port Richey. If your friend does not mind driving a little distance, i would recommend it.

 

 A little bit closer is the Belleview Biltmore, right in Clearwater. Nothing great, but OK... If money is not a real object, there's always Innisbrook Resort, where the PGA Tour event will be next week... They've got about 5 courses there, so some are better and more expensive than others.

 

 Landsbrook is another daily fee course, about 6-7 miles just north of the Phillies complex. it's a good course for the fee. Actually, as I think about it, i'd say Fox Hollow and Landsbrook are probably the best for the price in the immediate area of Clearwater.

 

 


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Is that Citi commercial for real?
Sunday, March 3, 2013
By Joe Logan

This has nothing to do with golf, but I’ve seen that wild Citibank rock-climbing commercial enough times that I finally Googled, "Is that Citibank commercial for real?" or something like that. 

 

I found this story from CNN that says, yes, it is.

 

 


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Fran[3/6/2013 4:15:10 AM]
Is the lead singer for the song in the commercial male or female?

More video vignettes on the ’13 Open
Friday, March 1, 2013
By Joe Logan

My first adventure in producing short videos for the MyPhillyGolf’s Youtube page is complete.  

 

I shot, edited and uploaded 10 vignettes featuring Jeff Silverman, who has spent much of the past two years researching and writing a new history of the championships hosted by Merion over the past century.

 

The videos, Part 1 through Part 10, cover everything from the founding of Merion, to what makes the East Course special, to the story and history behind the club’s famous red wicker baskets.

 

Here’s my personal favorite, the video on the wicker baskets.

 

 

 

The others are:

 

Part 1: Introduction

Part 2:  What makes Merion a special golf course

Part 3: On Merion’s length, defense against the pros

Part 4: Course changes for the Open

Part 5: Favorite info that Jeff dug up in his research

Part 6: On Bobby Jones winning the Grand Slam

Part 7: History of the wicker baskets

Part 8: Where Merion fits in the world of private clubs

Part 9: Why did the USGA want to bring the Open to Merion

Part 10: The 1971 Open, won by Lee Trevino

 

The longest of the videos is Part 1, which runs over six minutes.  Most of them are in the three- to four-minute range.

 

If you watch the videos in order, you’ll notice that the editing gets better.  That’s what spending hours with your face buried in the "Help" section of iMovie will get you.

 

This year, my plan is to produce more videos on various topics – interviews with people in the news, local pros, plus I’m going to out to do short tours of courses. 

 

 

 

 


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Jim Finegan 
Jim Finegan Update, No. 3
Tuesday, February 19, 2013
By Joe Logan

I’ve got an another update on Jim Finegan, this time from the horse’s mouth:  They’ve got him up and walking and he’s even dreaming about eventually making his return to golf.

 

"Only a madman would look to the future of his game when he didn’t have one going in," said Finegan, 83, laughing at himself. "But what do I find myself doing every day?  Wondering about how my game is going to be."

 

Finegan, the golf historian and author, fractured his femur in a fall on the stairs of his Villanova home on Jan. 30.   He spoke yesterday by phone from his bed in Devon Manor, a rehab center, where he has been since a few days after the fall and subsequent surgery.  He said he has no idea how long he will be in rehab.

 

Sounding clear-headed and upbeat, Finegan did change the medical report, at least from the early reports from his wife, Harriett.  He said he did not break his hip.  His only broken bone is a fractured femur, in his upper leg.

 

"I am certainly feeling better," said Finegan.  "I am able to do things on Tuesday that I couldn’t do on Monday.  There is steady improvement."

 

His walk, he said, is an unsteady gait that will earn him no style points.  Still, Finegan finds himself daydreaming about playing golf in the spring.

 

"I should be wondering if I will walk again," he said.  "But no, I am looking to the point that maybe there is a short par 3 in my future.  I should give it up but my mind keeps dragging me back to how I would play."


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Miracle at Merion
Monday, February 18, 2013
By Joe Logan

As we lick our chops waiting for the week of the U.S. Open at Merion, may I suggest a good book to read:  Miracle at Merion: The Inspiring Story of Ben Hogan’s Amazing Comeback and Victory at the 1950 U.S. Open.

 

The title of the book pretty much says it all.  Nothing enhances an experience like knowing the history behind it, and this book is primer on one of the most important events in modern golf history, the ’50 Open at Merion.

 

I read it when it first came out a couple of years ago, but I was in a hurry, trying to prepare for a Q&A with the author, David Barrett.  Now, as I prepare for to the Open, I’m re-reading Miracle at Merion much more slowly, plumbing it for details.

 

If you want an appreciation of golf history made in Philadelphia, this is not a bad place to start.


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