Bob Dylan Wins Nobel Prize for Literature

I’m shocked and elated.  I watched the live stream of the announcement and didn’t catch the name when given in the first language, but observed the burst of governed cheering.  I thought the name sounded like maybe Dom DeLillo.  I caught Dylan’s name in the second language.  The announcement in English followed, and I was certain I heard correctly.

Some have criticized the Committee’s choice, offering up snarky, witless remarks about novelists now being eligible to win Grammy awards.  That attitude shows an ignorance of past Nobel Prize Literature winners.  In 1913, Rabindranath Tagore won the award on the strength of Gitanjali, which translates to “Song Offerings” in English. Tagore wrote the Indian national anthem.

Here are some of Tagore’s songs:

So Dylan is not the first songwriter/poet to win.  There is no need for an apologia.  And then there’s this:


For me, this was a refreshing choice after Svetlana Alexievich last year, who won for non-fiction, journalistic works.  That, to me, marked a betrayal of the idea of a prize for literature.  Novels, plays, poems, songs.  Those are literature.  She was the first winner in a decade I did not make a point of reading.

I’ve read Dylan’s Chronicles, and I’ve been listening to his music for pretty much my entire life, so I have no need to get up to speed on this Nobel Prize winner.  Perhaps now I’ll go back and read Alexievich to fill the hole I left last year.

Two Dylan songs.  The first one is not actually the version on Blood on the Tracks.  I like this performance better, but I prefer the lyrics from the album cut:

There’s a lone soldier on the cross
Smoke pouring out of a boxcar door
You didn’t know, you didn’t think it could be done
But in the final end, he won the war
After losing every battle

Something more upbeat for this happy day.  Couldn’t find “Country Pie,” my first choice, so we’ll go with this one:

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Message for Jay

Jay, when you and all your fake accounts leave, would you turn out the lights?  Thanks.

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Natalie Gulbis Up Next!! Tuesday 9:00 EDT

The Trump convention has timed it so Natalie is in the heart of prime time.  This is huge for golf.  Talk about growing the game!

Natalie does not disappoint!  She aced it!

And right after her, Donald Trump appears live via a video feed.  What a night!

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Weekend: British Open Live Blog

This is what happens when…

As I pointed out in prior majors, it is absolutely ASININE to put all the top players on one side of the draw.  This week Rory, Jason Day, Jordan Spieth, and Rickie Fowler all teed off between 9:00 am and 9:36 am on Thursday.

Mickelson and Stenson? 1:26 pm and 2:15 pm.


What excitement!  I have not been this enthralled since Andrew Magee faced off against Jeff Maggert in the first WGC Match Play Championship!

And the announcing is superb!  Johnny Miller is so talented!  He doesn’t repeat the same old tired crap week after week after week, year after year after year, decade after decade after decade.  No, his analysis is fresh and riveting!  The only way this broadcast could be improved is if Brandel Chamblee would provide analysis of Magee Stenson and Maggert’s Mickelson’s swings.

Wow!  Excellent comment from Dan Hicks!  Mickelson “must feel like he is playing against Tiger!”  No way I’m turning this off!


Rory bolts to T-7, only three back of third place.  Stenson and Mickelson hear his footsteps and will likely falter!

Kuchar Komedy:  Kuchar’s stuggles on No. 8 were funny.  No two ways about it.

2016, the Open, and Everything:  Golf has been extremely disappointing in 2016.  Unless Rory or Jordan can get a win at the PGA in two weeks, I won’t be writing a check to St. Jude’s this year.  Regarding tomorrow, there are a bunch of pros about whom one thinks, “I hope he wins a major some day.”  But it’s never the current major.  No, I always want one of my favorites to win the one being played at that time.  DJ was one of those players, and he finally got his.  Stenson is another of those players, so he might as well get his tomorrow.  Then Westwood can win the PGA.

Worth Reading: Column from Oliver Brown (“Golf’s elitists should look in the mirror – not pick on Rory McIlroy“) on, among other things, the mantra of “growing the game” and Rory’s lack of interest in the Olympics.

Gary Player Comments:  Weird stuff from Gary Player:

Player, who is also the captain of South Africa’s first Olympic golf team, said he wouldn’t blame the Olympic Committee for kicking golf out of future games as a result of so many notable players refusing to attend.

“We all worked hard to get golf in the Olympics. I think professional golf should be kicked out of the Olympics…They should replace us with amateurs who would hold it at high esteem to represent this country with great joy,” he said.

Gee, that never occurred to you when you were pushing for golf in the Olympics in the first place?

To be honest, I would be happy if they canceled Olympics golf immediately rather than wait until after 2020.  Although Tokyo sounds halfway decent.

Saturday Morn: “We’re looking at a potential big number here.”  — Johnny Miller, after Leishman fails twice to get out of a bunker.  Great analysis.  That’s why Miller makes the big bucks.

The Night Before: Brilliant planning to put The Big Four all on the same side of the draw — the bad side.  Pure genius.

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Natalie Gulbis to Speak at Trump Convention!

More and more golfers are displaying backbones!

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Thursday: British Open Live Blog

3:35 am:  I’ve watched about an hour of coverage now.  Not bad.  Certainly better than the bits and pieces of the Live From coverage I caught this week.  That pretty much consisted of gratuitous mentions of Tiger Woods interspersed with boring, irrelevant swing talk from Brandel Chamblee.

Rory makes an appearance!  An interview by the putting green.  Good stuff.  Rory wants a score in the 60’s today in these benign conditions.  Tees off in one hour.

And Reed jars one from the fairway!

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Random Thoughts on British Open Eve

High Praise:  Mr. Elling acknowledged one of my bon mots.  There is no higher praise:

bonmotMandatory Outrage:  The reaction to Rory’s comments about the Olympics are par for the modern-day course.  People feel compelled to be outraged by any and everything, and then to let the world know they are outraged.  That the opinions are often ridiculously uninformed goes without saying.

Rory says, more or less, that golf is an ill-fit for the Olympics.  Talk about stating the obvious.

Outrage ensues.  How dare he insult the cosmos in such a fashion.

So let’s consider the IOC and wrestling.  In February 2013, the IOC announced wrestling would be dropped from the Olympics.  Wrestling in the Olympics dates back to 708 BC, and it is one of the sports whose ultimate accomplishment is to win a gold medal.  This was brutal.

Why was it dropped?  ESPN explains:

According to IOC documents obtained by the AP, wrestling ranked “low” in several of the technical criteria, including popularity with the public at the London Games — just below 5 on a scale of 10. Wrestling sold 113,851 tickets in London out of 116,854 available.

Wrestling also ranked “low” in global TV audience with a maximum of 58.5 million viewers and an average of 23 million, the documents show. Internet hits and press coverage were also ranked as low.

Anyone who clings to the idea that the Olympics are sports pure-and-honest has not been paying attention.  Wrestling doesn’t help the bottom line, so NBC and pals decide to jettison it.  Forget that high school wrestling is a very big deal in certain parts of the U.S., and an even bigger deal in certain other nations.  To hell with them.  We aren’t getting enough people watching our sponsor’s TV ads.  Let’s replace it with beach volleyball and BMX biking.

So anyone who thinks Rory was too blunt and thereby insulting is ignorant of how cutthroat the IOC can be.  NBC and the IOC can dish it out, but they can’t take it.

By the way, the IOC took so much heat for cutting wrestling that it was restored seven months later.

Outrage at Excuses!  Have you seen comments about how the players should have dropped out this way or that way?  Why use zika as an excuse when you didn’t want to play in anyway?

That’s not complicated.  All the top players would have played if zika had not cropped up and taken away the “inevitableness” of playing.  The players, suddenly not keen on going, could be honest with themselves about what a joke Olympics golf is.

Joke Event:  The British Open and PGA Championship will have, approximately, 100 of the top 100 players.  At the Olympics, twenty of the top  50 players are Americans who, zika virus or not, would be sitting home on their couches.

Headache:  The Olympics were always a headache for Rory.  A big fuss was made right away about whether he would play for Ireland or the U.K.

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