Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Unusual Gift Idea: Belt Buckle Made from Antique Golf Club

Looking for an unusual gift for the golfer in your life? I recently found something that seems pretty cool: belt buckles made from the blades of antique golf clubs.

Not surprisingly, this item is offered by that purveyor of the weird and wonderful, the unique and expensive, Hammacher-Schlemmer. They call it "The Genuine Hickory Golf Club Belt Buckle." How is it made? Take authentic 1920s-era hickory-shafted golf irons made in Scotland, remove the blade (the head of the iron), and turn it into a belt buckle. The original club was either a mid-iron or mashie.

And every buckle is unique, with unique stamps, markings and wear patterns. Says the retailer:

No two buckles are alike and each one has unique markings that may have been caused by determined swings from a cavernous pot bunker while battling whipping coastal winds on St. Andrews or another legendary links course. The club head was originally hand-formed by a blacksmith and the buckle has the artisan’s cleek mark and club loft that were originally stamped into the iron nearly 100 years ago.

They are expensive: $380 at the time of this writing. I'm not saying I'd spend that much, but, hey, I'm cheap and have few friends. (You probably knew that already because I'm a blogger.)

But you? You might be willing to shell out that much for what is a pretty cool, if not necessarily fashion-forward, idea. If you're interested, take a look here.

Sunday, November 15, 2015

Watch: Michelle Wie Dancing

You wouldn't think someone as clumsy as Michelle Wie would have much in the way of dance moves. But she shakes her rather nice little tushy quite well in this Instagram video she posted. Girls night in, dancing to Justin Beieber:

The others in the video include Jeehae Lee, former LPGA player; and Hally Leadbetter, college golfer and David's daughter.

Saturday, November 7, 2015

Looking Back at Those Nike/Tiger Woods Ball Bouncing Commercials

It's been more than 15 years since one of the most-iconic and well-remembered golf television commercials of all-time first appeared on TV screens. I'm talking about the ball-bouncing commercial with Tiger Woods by Nike Golf. It's what we would probably call "juggling" a golf ball today - bouncing it on the clubface (sometimes the crown) of a golf club, repeatedly.

Woods made three such commercials for Nike, the first one appearing on June 16, 1999. Here are all three of them (the third one shows Tiger bloopers) back-to-back-to-back:

For golfers who came of age after these commercials appeared - golfers who are just teenagers now, or maybe just around age 20 - it might be hard to fathom just how big a deal that first Tiger Woods ball bouncing commercial really was. Because today, on YouTube, you can find dozens and dozens of golfers doing the exact same thing.

Frankly, the ball bouncing trick just isn't that impressive anymore. Any golfer can do it with patience and practice. It's a staple of trick shot videos.

But at the time, in 1999, these commercials exploded into the golf world. For many golfers - remember, this is pre-YouTube - Tiger juggling his golf ball in that first Nike commercial was the first time they had ever seen anything like this.

Some people even doubted that Woods really performed the trick as it was shown - "there must have been camera tricks!" You can get a sense of this in a 1999 newspaper article that appeared in the Seattle Times; the headline was, "That Tiger Woods TV Commercial? Honest, It Really Happened That Way."

Some people just couldn't believe their eyes, apparently.

The article describes the "accidental" way the commercial came about:

Woods says he really did bounce the ball continuously for about 28 seconds - in front of him, between his legs, behind his back and in front again - before popping it high in the air, then swatting it a la Ken Griffey Jr.

No trick photography or videotape splicing was necessary.

"It's real," he said. "Trust me."

The commercial happened by accident. Producers were taping another Nike commercial, the one that shows Woods on a driving range with other golfers, hitting shots in sequence.

Woods said the taping took hours. During one long wait, he decided to entertain the other golfers with his wedge-and-ball trick.

"I was basically putting on an exhibition, just trying to pass the time," Woods said. The director said, `You know, why don't we just film this?' "

Woods was told that, for a 30-second commercial, his juggling routine needed to be 28 seconds. But during each of the first three takes, the director would interrupt with, "You've got 10 seconds." Each time, Woods said, "I'd shank it right away."

Before the fourth take, Woods told the director to wait until five seconds remained to say anything. Take No. 4 was a keeper.

Was Woods the first golfer to perform the ball-bouncing trick? Of course not - he was just the first to do so in a high-profile TV production (everything Tiger did in those days was high-profile). For as long as there have been golfers, there have been golfers trying to pull off trick shots.

Tiger's ball-juggling Nike commercial just happened to come along at the perfect time, with the perfect golfer, and the perfect presentation.

Tiger's niece Cheyenne Woods today occasionally breaks out the same trick:

Monday, November 2, 2015

Charley Hull's Eyebrow Dance is Strangely Intoxicating ...

Maybe we're just weird. But we can't ... stop .... watching ....

A year ago my eyebrow dance. I just found this on my computer. Hehehe

A video posted by Charley Hull (@charleyhull12) on

Friday, October 30, 2015

13 Sexiest Golfers of 2015: No. 1 Paige Spiranac

And No. 1 on GSB's 13 Sexiest Golfers of 2015 is - who else? - Paige Spiranac.

I can't remember a golfer who's blown up her profile - and the Internet - the way Paige did this year. And it all started with a simple (and, in the beginning, lightly used) Instagram account where she posted her college golf team's trick shot video. Before long, she was being featured on every golf site around, and on a lot of non-golf sites, too (Esquire, for example).

No doubt Spiranac is an Internet marketing genius. Paige has said she didn't plan any of it, and I believe her: Genius is often found, not produced. And achieving world domination might just be Paige's found genius.

But she can also play (see here). Now she's focusing on a pro golf career, starting out with competitions on the Cactus Tour. Stay tuned to see if she can make a run at even bigger things.

Here are a couple YouTube clips that include more pics plus Paige's swing:

Want to see more of Paige Spiranac? Follow her on Instagram or on Twitter.

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Thursday, October 29, 2015

13 Sexiest Golfers of 2015: No. 2 Sandra Gal

The golfer coming in at No. 2 on GSB's 13 Sexiest Golfers of 2015 is Sandra Gal.

We noted in an earlier post that there are only three returnees from our 2014 list; that's because we made an effort to include lots of new faces. Sandra is the highest-ranking returnee this year. In 2014 we had her at No. 13.

So yes, it's fair to say we are mighty big Sandra Gal fans around here. And why wouldn't we be? Those luscious legs, that fabulous booty ... tall, beautiful, smart, cultured, funny: Sandy is the whole package. Sexy is more than just looks, and Gal has all those other intangibles on top of the looks.

A photo posted by @thesandragal on

A photo posted by @thesandragal on

Here's a slideshow with more Sandra pics:

Want to see more of Sandra Gal? Follow her on Instagram or on Twitter.

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Wednesday, October 28, 2015

13 Sexiest Golfers of 2015: No. 3 Annabel Rolley

No. 3 on GSB's 13 Sexiest Golfers of 2015 is Annabel Rolley. Which makes her No. 1 on any list of the sexiest golf instructors.

Because that's what Annabel is, of course. You can catch her many nights dispensing advice to golfers on the Golf Channel. Her profile has become quite large, but she earned it by working her way up through the instructor ranks first in her native Australia and then in the United States. She's worked at some of the top clubs and with some of the biggest names in her field.

If Annabel doesn't make you want to take lessons, nothing will.

Annabel shared this pic with the caption, "I can't tell you how elated I am with the global trend of 'small waist, round bum'...I was really hungry through the 'skinny' trend years! Haha #rockyourcurvesgirls":

Here are some more pics of Annabel:

Want to see more of Annabel Rolley? Follow her on Instagram or on Twitter.

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Tuesday, October 27, 2015

13 Sexiest Golfers of 2015: No. 4 Lucy Robson

Coming in at No. 4 on GSB's 13 Sexiest Golfers of 2015 is Lucy Robson.

Robson is another golfer whose profile became much bigger recently when her Instagram account caught the eye of various websites (golf and non-golf sites). You can see why below.

Lucy was born in London, England, but calls Stuart, Fla., her hometown. She attended high school in Florida and then began her college experience at the University of South Florida (school of another golfer on our list, Maria Rodriguez). But after two years at USF, Lucy transferred from the East to the West and Cal Poly, where she is now a junior.

Robson was a 2-time Treasure Coast Player of the Year in high school, and finished first on the Hurricane Collegiate Tour in 2015.

A photo posted by Lucy Robson (@lucyrobson) on

A photo posted by Lucy Robson (@lucyrobson) on

Here are some more pics of Lucy plus a few of her swings:

Want to see more of Lucy Robson? Follow her on Instagram or on Twitter.

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Monday, October 26, 2015

13 Sexiest Golfers of 2015: No. 5 Lena Schaeffner

Coming in at No. 5 on GSB's 13 Sexiest Golfers of 2015 is Lena Schaeffner. Lena is the second college golfer we've seen so far ... but not the last one we'll see.

Schaeffner is from Germany and is a member of the German National Team. But she's playing most of her golf in the States right now while attending Coastal Carolina University. And she's having a great college golf career. In fact, she won three NCAA tournaments last season alone. She was named her conference's golfer of the year.

This season - the 2015-16 NCAA season - Lena is a senior. And she'll be trying to improve on the school record she set last year for lowest season scoring average. Schaeffner is definitely a golfer with a pro future.

Want to see more of Lena Schaeffner? Follow her on Instagram or on Twitter.

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Sunday, October 25, 2015

13 Sexiest Golfers of 2015: No. 6 Sharmila Nicollet

Coming in at No. 6 on GSB's 13 Sexiest Golfers of 2015 is Sharmila Nicollet, a k a "the Indian golf goddess."

We made an effort to include new names and faces in this year's list, so there are only three holdovers from our 2014 rankings. And Sharmila is one of those three.

"Cheri" is one of the best follows on social media (links at bottom of this post), not just because of the pics she shares. But because of the wit she shares. Nicollet is one sharp golfer. She's tons of fun, but I don't think I'd want to get on her bad side!

Sharmila plays on the Ladies European Tour is a huge presence in building golf (and a women's golf tour) in India.

Want to see more of Sharmila Nicollet? Follow her on Instagram or on Twitter.

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