June 4, 2011 at Seven
Lakes Golf Course, Windsor,
Nino Memorial went international for the first time this
year - heading across the border with our neighbors to
the North, Canada. Culture shock struck the four participants
in this year's tourney (Jaeson "Nino" Becker,
Tim "Eagleglass" Speigelglass, Jeff "Smailz"
Small and Tim "Toolman" Boyer) as they discovered
that Windsor, Ontario is inhabited primarily by three
grougs: 1) Ugly Canadians; 2) 18 years looking to drink
legally; and 3) Eastern European women.
weekend got off to a great start on Thursday with a stop
for 18 holes of golf at TPC Michigan before designated
driver Smailz piloted the Chrysler Town and Country across
the border. Smailz's driving left something to be desired,
as the riders in the T&C routinely felt their lives
at risk, but the van was able to navigate through the
"Tunnel to Canada" and to the lovely Holiday
Inn Windsor, the hotel host for NMXII.
The run up to the tourney consisted of a day and two nights
of golfing, eating, drinking "Canadians," cavorting
with the locals and the transplants from Eastern Europe,
and, for Eagleglass, about thirty minutes hanging out
on the street waiting for a new friend he met at a local
pizzeria. What NMXII lacked in attendance it more than
made up for in the rollicking good time had by all - which
included a total of 288 holes of golf (including 90 holes
each by Eagleglass and Toolman).
Saturday rolled around and it was time for the NM itself.
This NM marked a first - the first time that every participant
in the event was a former NM Champion. The team of Toolman
and Nino also set a record as the team with the most ever
prior NM titles at 8. Based on the play of the competitors
the oddsmakers had team Toolman/Nino as the underdogs,
especially since they were facing the defending champions.
Due to this underdog status there was a heavy push throughout
the weekend to make the NM a "match play" event
- however the competitors teed off on Saturday following
the classic "stroke play" rules.
Alas, it would not have mattered what format was used
because the team of Eagleglass/Smailz proved unstoppable.
From the first tee they played great team golf, consistently
picking up each other's bad shots throughout the day.
Team Toolman/Nino tried to hang in but could not, and
after 18 holes had suffered a defeat of 76-83. After a
healthy debate, all four competitors agreed to play an
additional 18 holes, marking another NM first - the first
36 hole tournament. But even with the extra holes the
deficit proved too much, and the team of Eagleglass/Smailz
were able to defend their championship and take the jackets
with a total score of 155-170.
So what lessons can we take away from this NM? Perhaps
Smailz summarized it best: "1: a Canadian dollar
is a coin not paper and it is called a loony cause there
is a frigging duck (loon) on the back. Number 2: A 5 dollar
bill (it's blue) in Canada has fucking hockey and sledding
in it. We have Abe Lincoln; maybe if he was riding a sled
ours would be cool too. And 3: never go to canada and
order a molson thinking u are a stud for drinking Canadian
beer. The waitress will roll her eyes, call u fucking
Americans and tell u in the future to order a Canadian."
Wise words from the good doctor. We can only hope to learn
as much in future years.