Lee Bacchus looks at Golf

Maximum Golf Magazine

Thank you, Maximum Golf magazine.

Without you I would not know that the 10th green at Pebble Beach is not only a great place to tee it up but also to "get it on" (as in the horizontal mambo).

And without your August 2000 issue, I would not have learned all about Eddie Van Halen's passion for golf (or his feud with David Lee Roth) and I would not have been privy to the knowledge that a Los Angeles medic was once summoned to a golf course to administer to a player who got stung on his (ahem) "putter" while taking an impromptu leak.

Maximum Golf, a relatively new player on the golf publication circuit, definitely is not your father's golf magazine. One part men's mag (think Gear or GQ), one part rock'n'roll sheet (i.e. Spin or Rolling Stone) and another part screaming-headline celebrity tabloid ("The Phil Mickelson You Don't Know", "The Dangers that Lurk at the US Open!"), Maximum Golf is certainly a departure from the conventional profiles-and-pro-tips mags that crowd the newstand.

Clearly trying to target the new, hip, younger generation linkster, the magazine bounces jauntily and with heavy doses of irony from fashion (Scott Hoch gets a reprimand from the fashion police) to star gazing (there's a page of paparazzi styled photos of celebrity golfers like Ray Romano, and Samuel Jackson) to gear and gadgetry (like the novelty boxer shorts from Joe Boxer).

And I have to say that for $2.95 US, Maximum Golf is a pretty fun read. For sure, it beats yet another treatise on Tiger Woods' practice and exercise regime.

And yet I wonder If you're going to go the splashy tabloid route with a golf publication, then why not go all the way.? In other words, why not combine the stuff of golf with the supermarket newstand spirit of the National Enquirer or The World Weekly News (which this week reveals that Castro is unleashing man-eating sharks to terrorize Floridians!).

Yes, I can see the inaugural issue now, it's cover dominated by a candid black-and-white headshot of an angry Curtis Strange, with the accompanying and overlarge headline:

"STRANGE" U.S. CAPTAIN CLAIMS EURO RIVALS SPIKING BELFRY WATER WITH MAD COW VIRUS!!!"

The margins of the cover would be screaming with more headlines. Such as:

GARY MCCORD EXPLAINED! HE'S AN ALIEN!!!

SPECTATORS AT PGA TOURNEY CLAIM PORTLY SIGN GUY WAS REALLY ELVIS!!!

FRIENDS SAY TIGER ACTUALLY ILLICIT LOVE CHILD OF DIANA ROSS AND HALE IRWIN!!!

And keeping with the tabloid tradition of half-truths, rumors and innuendo, we would have equipment reviews with headlines such as,

"NEW DRIVER MEANS REACHING PAR-FIVES IN ONE!!!"

Or, "NEW BIODEGRADEABLE TEES CAN ALSO BE USED AS EMERGENCY LAXATIVE!!!"

Lee’s Top Three Golf Topics

1. OUT OF THE WOODS: Tiger's back in the money after a brief "slump." I guess we won't have to launch those Tiger Relief donation informercials now.

2. PHIL'S DRILL: Another week, another way to lose a championship.

3. DAVID TOMS' LAY-UP: Hey, I lay up on a lot of par fours and I'm not praised as a hero.

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