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Archive for the ‘Golf’ Category

Filipino Food Dish: Sinigang

After a round of golf, the Pinoy Golfer would order something to eat from the waiter of the Clubhouse and he needs something, a dish that has soup that could replenish his perspiration. In most cases, the Pinoy Golfer would order “Sinigang”. This is a food dish which has a sour soup with a fish or meat and vegetables in it.

When I was in Grade School, this was the first food dish my mother would teach me to cook. Depending on the number of people who would share the dish, consider the amount of water to be placed on the cooking pan and the amount of fish or meat to be cooked with it.

Cooking a Sinigang dish is very simple. Boil at least 3-4 cups of water in a cooking pot; put chopped ripe tomatoes, at least 3-4 medium size; 2 pieces of ginger as big as the thumb, pressed and chopped; any sour fruit that is chopped (peeled ripe guava without the seeds or fresh green tamarind); half-kilo of fish, bangus/milkfish or lapu-lapu/maya-maya or salmon’s head are the prefered ones or half-kilo of meat, pork neck bones or pork meat from the belly; green leafy vegetables like pechay leaves or kangkong/camote leaves; and salt to taste. Once the water is boiling, place the tomatoes, ginger, and the sour fruit and let the flavor from these ingredients mixed with the water. Taste the water if it has the sour taste already and simmer the pot. Slowly, put the fish or meat at the pot. When the meat or fish is cooked, mix the vegetables and salt. Once the vegetables are blanched and slightly cooked, remove the pot from the stove and the sinigang dish is ready to be served.

In the absence of sour tasting fruits, a lot of fresh ripe tomatoes, chopped and cooked-well, with the boiling water would be enough to make the soup sour. Adding some spoonful of vinegar would be the last resort to make the fish/meat stew sour. To give a better taste to the meat or fish, the Pinoy Golfer could ask some spoonful of “patis” or salted fish sauce which could be added or used as a “dip” or mixed with the soup. 

Today, it is easier to cook sinigang because there are “sinigang broth mix” packs available at the grocery stores. This broth packs are mixed with the boiling waiter and just place the meat or fish with it and mix it with any available green leafy vegetables and you have already a hot sour stew.

Aside from my Pinoy golf buddies, most of my friends from other countries who regularly play in the military golf courses in Metro Manila attest to their preference to eat Singang after a game of golf. Their wives are requested to cook Sinigang for lunch at home when these foreigners play golf or even practice in the golf driving range.

My favorite dish is the Sinigang Salmon’s Head at the Camp Aguinaldo Golf Course which is available all-year round. If you have the chance to play in this golf course, try it!

 

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 The Backswing

At the top

 The Downswing

And…the Follow-Through!

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This is Hole # 16, the Signature Hole, of the Fairways and Bluewater Resort Golf and Country Club in Boracay Island. It is Par 3. 143 yards at the Yellow Tee/131 yards at the Blue Tee. It has a Handicap of 18.

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Raffle Prizes

Almost every week, there are golf tournaments that the Pinoy Golfer could join and compete, most especially in the military golf courses in Metro Manila. In my experience of more than one year assignment in Camp Aguinaldo (seat of the General Headquarters of the Armed Forces of the Phlipines), the Camp Aguinaldo Golf Course caters to at least 35 Golf Clubs whose members are being spread out from the different professionals, businessmen, doctors, politicians, actors, active & retired military personnel, and other groups of individuals. Most of these Golf Clubs conduct monthly tournaments.

The centerpoint of these tournaments are the raffle prizes that the lucky Pinoy Golfer/s could bring home to make his wife happy as these raffles prizes serve as “gifts” to the woman in the house. These tournaments have a corresponding ticket which amounts to two thousand to two thousand five hundred pesos per piece (P2,000-P2,500). In each ticket, it has a stub for the raffle prizes, a stub for the green fee & caddy fee, and a stub for the snacks & meals at designated snack bars along the golf course. The most important stub in one’s ticket is the raffle prize. The Pinoy Golfer would personally place his stub at the raffle bin/”tambiolo” just to be sure that he is included in the raffle.

I know of so many golfers who have completed their house appliances in their homes, from electric fans to flat irons to refrigirators and TV and air-conditoners. Most of the time for an ordinary tournament, the major prizes would be a 20-inch TV, a 10-cubic inch refrigirator, or an air-con unit (1.5 HP). Sometimes, there are also some minor prizes. In bigger and more prestigious tournaments supported and financed by well-known corporate sponsors, the prize for the “Hole-In-One”, if not taken by a lucky golfer who makes a “hole-in-one” in a designated hole, becomes a Raffle Prize! Most of the prizes in this category are brand-new cars!

I know of so many Pinoy Golfers who would join golf tournaments with the sole purpose of hoping to bring home one of the major raffle prizes.

I will never forget my experiences in so many tournaments where so many times I won Hair Dryer/Blower. It was really funny to be bringing home such items which I can not use because I am bald.

The truth is, raffle prizes in tournaments, is becoming the reason of a golfer-husband to have a valid reason to be out of the house during weekends and free from the guarding eyes of the wife. With a cheap stand electric fan or a flat iron or an oven toaster brought home by the husband could be a satisfaction from the eyes of the wife that her husband really participated in a tournament, it could be otherwise, as the husband could have bought the said item in one of the appliance stores and “wandered around” in other places except at the golf course.

But this “raffle prize” thing is no longer effective “alibi” for the golfer-husband to be away from the wife. My golf friend made a mistake on this. He did not know that his wife removed the Sand Wedge from his Golf Bag before he left for the golf tournament. When my friend returned home with an Oven Toaster as the item he won in the “golf tournament”, the wife asked him how many times did his ball landed on the Sand Trap. Of course, my friend proudly said that he almost landed in all the Sand Traps in the golf course but he luckily managed to bring his ball to the green and was able to save more strokes on his score. Well, my friend was immediately attacked by his wife with his Sand Wedge on her hands.

Moral lesson of the story? Play a legitimate golf tournament and hope to win a raffle prize and never use the tournament as an “alibi”. Be sure to physically check the contents of your golf bag and see if one of your golf clubs is missing.

More golf tournaments to join means more home appliances for the house…and the other houses.

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Lacoste Shirts

When I visited Bangkok, Thailand for an educational tour in 1997, the tourist guide would tell us that Filipinos are fond of the Lacoste T-shirt. We just laughed because we knew that the fake Lacoste T-shirts being sold at Greenhills came from Bangkok, Thailand.

In golf, the Pinoy Golfer would be proud to wear his Lacoste shirt, not a fake one, even if it is already old and faded. He wants to wear the loose golf shirts from Lacoste because it an expensive shirt and he looks “cool” and fresh wearing the bright and pastel colors of the shirt. The Pinoy Golfer is not only satisfied to wear a Golf Shirt but he tries also to pair it with a Lacoste Golf Pants and Lacoste Golf Shoes.

I like also to wear the Lacoste shirt, not because it’s the status symbol among golfers, but I like the stiffness of the collar. I am fond of having a “standing collar” with my Cotton Pique Lacoste shirt while playing golf. The collar does not bend or fall as compared to other expensive Golf Shirts. Playing with a standing collar would protect the nape from the heat of the sun when you tend to bend when putting your ball on the green. Sporting a standing collar would also give you a “mean-look” to your opponent of which you are much better looking if you are also wearing a nice sports sunglasses.

It is advisable not to wear “fake” Lacoste apparel in the golf course with your golfmates because it is sending a message that you are also a “fake”. The Pinoy Golfer being fond of Lacoste could determine a real from a fake one at a distance.

Seldom you could see Sports Lacoste Cotton Long-Sleeved T-shirts in Lacoste outlets because they are being bought immediately by Pinoy Golfers. This is the most sought after Golf Shirt by the Pinoy Golfer because it covers the whole length of the arms as it protects the player from the heat of the sun and it has a good selection of colors with it. 

For you want to look good and feel good in the golf course, wear a “real” Lacoste shirt during your golf game. Get the pastel colored ones. If you have a nice body and flat stomach, buy and wear the latest stretchable cotton pique Lacoste shirts.

Lastly, don’t forget to sport a “standing collar” look with your Lacoste shirt.

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In my early years of playing golf, my officer’s rank then was a Major. I can still remember that my classmate, Ernie B, would call me through our landline phone at Headquarters Philippine Army and invite me for a game of golf during Tuesday and Thursday afternoon, being considered as our Athletic and Physical Fitness time/period for all the Officers and Enlisted personnel. Most of the time, our assembly time was 12:00 Noon and we would take a simple lunch at the Clubhouse and we should be driving our first ball at Hole No. 1 before 1:00 PM.

In a group of four players, it is called “four-some”. During these athletic periods, the management of the old Fort Bonifacio Golf and Country Club would strickly impose “four-some” in every “golf flight”. “Golf Flight” means a group of golfers (at least “four-some”) that go together and tee-off on a scheduled time.

My “golf flight” always consists of my friend Ernie B, Jun E, Ebbie P, and myself. Ernie B and Jun E are my classmates in the Philippine Military Academy while Ebbie P is a civilian businessman who is a very close friend of Ernie E. Ebbie P is a handicap 12 golf player when we started playing golf in the early 1990s. The membership of this golf flight was a permanent and we go from one golf course to another during weekends in the military camps and sometimes to golf courses outside Metro Manila.

It was almost 4-5 years that we played golf together and became closer to one another. My golfmates were good in golf, very good in telling golf jokes, and good in talking to the lady caddies and umbrella girls. They were all cigarette smokers! They fart when you are putting on the green. And worse was, they always beat me and I had to lose some money to them.

I could still remember the “always repeated three questions” Ernie B would asked to the lady caddies and umbrella girls whenever we play golf—(1) Who was the former seminarian/priest among us who opted to leave the church? (2) Who was still single among us? and (3) Who was the “playboy” and could easily attract ladies among the four of us? Because I have a flat stomach, very silent but with a smiling face (?), didn’t get angry when I had “bad shots”; and wearing colorful golf shirts; almost always, the lady caddies and umbrella girls always point their fingers to me!!!The caddies and the umbrella girls were all wrong in their answers.

Today, we seldom play in a “golf flight” the way we used to play when we were still with the rank of Majors in the Philippine Army. Ernie B just retired from the active military service last 15 February this year as the Commander of the 10th Infantry Division of the Philippine Army based in Davao City. Jun E is the present Chief of Staff of the Armed Forces of the Philippines whose retirement was extended up to 09 May 2008. Ebbie P is still playing golf but his business had been delegated to his children. As for me, I will be retiring on my 56th Birthday on 17 May 2008.

Soon, this “golf flight” will be revived again and I am sure those lady caddies and umbrella girls will point their fingers at me again once Ernie B will ask those three questions. I am sure also that these guys will not completely bring home my bet/money. This time will be a “payback time”!  

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Good-Looking Lady Caddy and/or Umbrella Girl

Pinoy Golfers are the most pampered and well-served players in the world. In the golf courses that I’ve seen and played in the United States and other ASEAN countries, most of their golf courses do not have any caddies, moreso, no umbrella girls. But in the Philippines, any golfer can enjoy both–a caddy and an umbrella girl.

The Philippine Army Golf Course has lady caddies and umbrella girls. The rest of the military golf courses in Metro Manila (Camp Aguinaldo, Philippine Navy, & Villamor Air Base Golf Course) have male caddies but they offer umbrella girls. In other “high-end” golf course outside Metro Manila, they have both lady caddies and umbrella girls (like Fontana/Clark Golf Course; Fairways & Bluewater Golf Club in Boracay; and others).

The Pinoy Golfer likes to play with a lady caddy and an umbrella girl. Not only that, they want a good-looking lady caddy and/or an umbrella girl. It is my personal observation that the “looks” of the lady caddy/an umbrella girl has a direct connection with the result of my golf game. If I have good-looking caddy/umbrella, I have a better rythym and a better score. It had been tested and I proved it to be true! I usually call this “Jovie’s Theory” in playing golf.

Visualize this, what is your temperament if your caddy is ugly? Of course, your concentration and focus to your game are affected and it will lead to your worst round of golf. You are not relaxed and comfortable because you are mad why in a hell that Caddy Master gave you an ugly one! In golf, you must be cool, relaxed and your body muscles are loose. The main opponent in golf is yourself! So, if you are mad and “hot-tempered” because you don’t like the face of your caddy or umbrella girl, be ready to lose with your bet or re-negotiate with your golfmates on your bet.

On the opposite situation, if my caddy and umbrella girl are “good-looking”, I am 100% sure that I have a nice game and sometimes win some money for an “extra tip” for them. 

In one instance, I heard an old golfer complaining to the Caddy Master why he was given a “not so good-looking & chubby” lady caddy. The old golfer said to the Caddy Master that he does not want that “as if his wife is guarding him all the time up to the golf course and telling him what to do!”. The old golfer had a valid reason and he got the youngest and most beautiful among the lady caddies. After 18 holes, I lost Five Hundred Pesos in my game to this old golfer!  

Whenever I play golf at the Philippine Army Golf Course, the Caddy Master always provide me with the best-looking available caddy and umbrella girl. This gives me the pleasure to play more concentrated and focused on my golf swing and more positive ball strikes with my golf club. Having a “good-looking lady caddy & umbrella girl” will also be a source of envy from your golfmates in a “golf flight” and this will distract the concentration of your opponents to the game of golf.

My advice? Get the Best and you will end up as the Best Player!

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