MW Mobile Blog

For friends, family and the random search engine visitor. This blog started as an experiment in mobile blogging from my Palm TREO 600, 700, Prē, HTC Evo, Samsung 5, Pixel 3, Pixel 6 Pro. Now it serves as a simple repository of favorite activities. Expect bad golf, good fishing, great sailing, eating, drinking, adventure travel, occasional politics and anything else I find interesting along the way including, but not limited to, any of the labels listed here...

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Amazing Sharp Park Drone Videography

Brad has a new toy. A hi-rez video camera with attached drone. While practicing with the drone, he took these clips over Sharp Park, Laguna Salada, Salada Beach and looking toward Pacifica. 

 By the way... Laguna Salada means "Salt Lake"which... it is no longer. It has been a  freshwater lake for the last 70 years or so, therefore an ideal habitat for endangered frogs and snakes. Endangered elseswhere, but quite happy here next to the course. All  thanks to the golf course that created the frog and sake friendly habitat. Just sayin...

Brad is a professional photographer and author of "Alister Mackenzie's Legacy of Public Golf at Sharp Park".

This illustration is a recreation of the original Sharp Park layout.

Brad is also an advocate for protecting the important historical legacy of the course and a provisional member of the Bad Golfers Associations (although his single digit handicap has some of the members grumbling).

He gave me permission to post these clips on YouTube and the blog for us all to enjoy. Thanks, Brad. 

Saturday, July 26, 2014

OGC at Rancho Canada - The Triumph of Bad Golf

Rick and I were teamed with Steve and Paul for an Oracle Golf Club event at Rancho Canada (East Course) in Carmel.

 As is our custom, we generally do not "Live Blog" the round when paired with real golfers who are not familiar with my golf blogging fetish.  It can be distracting.  And annoying.  Really, really annoying. However, the round was notable for several reasons, so we'll post a few highlights.

First, our foursome won the team net two best ball format. This is my second consecutive victory on the OGC tour after our triumph at Eagle Vines. Note, these victories were with two completely different foursomes. Except for me. Draw your own conclusions.

Second, I was putting for only the second eagle of my golfing life on the sixth hole. This is a par four with tricky tee shot through a gap in the trees, over a creek, toward a well protected green.  Drive the green, and you are rewarded with an eagle putt like this:

 But it's 237 yards. A par four. Yeah, that's what I thought.  At Lincoln there are three holes on the back that play to a similar length, and they are all par 3's. So I played it like those Lincoln holes and hit the driver, putting the ball on the green nine feet past the hole (actually, that almost never works at Lincoln, but it seemed to work today at Rancho Canada).  Difference being, instead of putting for a bird on Lincoln on a similar hole, I was putting for an eagle at Rancho Canada. And to the shock of the real golfers in our foursome...

...drained it.

 And put a double circle on my scorecard.

 The third highlight is the most astonishing of all. This one requires some context. Carmel is a bit of a drive from the Bay Area, so we only had 5 foursomes in the tourney.  The fourteenth hole was the long drive hole.  We were the last group of the day.  Rick was the only one in our foursome to put his ball on the fairway. Apparently that was more the rule than the exception for most of the other groups, as when we approached Rick's paltry 197 yard drive, we were stunned to find it 15 yards past the longest drive marker.  Yes, Rick won Longest Drive with that limp dick drive.  We'll never hear the end of it.

We have grown accustomed to the phenomena of watching very good golfers pulled down to our level when they find themselves in a foursome with me and my Bad Golfer Association compadres.  Today we may have achieved a new high water mark in the history of Bad Golfdom. This tourney awarded prizes to: The longest "Closest to the Pin" (33 feet) in the clubs 23 year history, the shortest "Long Drive" (197 yards) in club history. And two consecutive victories to one of the worst golfers in the club.

We successfully dragged an entire golf club down to our level. Quite a day.

Friday, July 25, 2014

The New York Times weighs in on abalone diving.

And it wasn't a particularly upbeat article. All about dead divers and poachers.
Prized but Perilous Catch
In Hunt for Red Abalone, Divers Face Risks and Poachers Face the Law
JULY 25, 2014
FORT BRAGG, Calif. — Every year, as steady as the tides, lifeless bodies are pulled from the cold, restless water along the rugged coastline north of San Francisco. 
Most of the victims are middle-aged men. They wear black wet suits, usually hooded. They are often found in small coves framed by crescents of jagged rocks. An abandoned float tube sometimes bobs about nearby. Almost without exception, the victims are found wearing weighted belts that help them sink.

Sometimes the bodies are discovered by friends nearby. If the fog is not too thick, the victims might be spotted from the towering bluffs above, where lifeguards patrol dozens of miles of desolate coast and armed game wardens spy for poachers. Many of the bodies are plucked from the swells by a search-and-rescue helicopter crew accustomed to making daring rope rescues and recoveries several times a year. The bodies are those of abalone divers."
 Well. Isn't that special?

On the other hand.  Since "most of the victims are middle-aged men" I guess I don't have anything to worry about. I am outside of that category now.  So no problem. And if you can't trust the New York Times, who can you trust?

Still, I like the more upbeat coverage of the sport from their December 4, 2005 article a little better:
"So is a warmly shared adventure among old friends, to judge by the experience of Zachary A. Nelson, the chief executive of NetSuite, a software company in San Mateo. Mr. Nelson, 44, loves to go abalone hunting, in which divers, without scuba tanks, face the multiple hazards of drowning, jagged rocks and sharks. But even when he escapes the office to go diving, he said, he doesn't always leave his work behind. A few weeks ago Mr. Nelson spent an afternoon diving off the Sonoma County coast with Michael Wallach, an executive vice president at Citadon, an Internet firm. Not only did Mr. Nelson surface from the kelp beds with a rare mollusk 10 inches in diameter, but also he and Mr. Wallach struck a deal to bundle their companies' software products."
 Zach and some of my other Ab buddies need to watch it. They're still in that dangerous "middle-age" category.

Season reopens in a week.

Can't wait.

Sunday, July 13, 2014

19th Hole

BK 83
MW 94
AZ 94
RZ 96

Beer, burger, and extra time in the World Cup.

I was not the worst golfer in the group this week

Sent from my Sprint HTC smartphone.

Traditional 17th Portrait w Golden Gate Bridge

And almost out of juice. Blogging is now restricted for the balance of the round.

Sent from my Sprint HTC smartphone.

Rick hits a nice drive on 15

But about 20 yards short of mine. Adam, on the other hand, out drove me.  I was in a Zwicker sandwich.Very uncomfortable.

Sent from my Sprint HTC smartphone.

Brad shows how it is done...

 ... drawing a long drive around the dogleg on the 14th hole.

Sent from my Sprint HTC smartphone.

Somewhere after the turn...

BK 43
AZ 45
RZ  47
MW 49

Adam is playing out of his mind, with four pars in a row to the 11th tee.

But the streak came to crashing end with a double bogey on 11.

Sent from my Sprint HTC smartphone.

The golf gods were not pleased.

The sixth hole at Lincoln is usually one of my favorites. The hard dogleg right plays perfectly to my heroic banana ball off the tee.  Today, under the watchful gaze of the golf gods adorning the roof of the Legion of Honor, my slice failed to make an appearance. I drove the ball through the fairway and deep into the dark woods beyond.  Lost ball, and my only snowman on the day.

Adam on 5th tee

Sent from my Sprint HTC smartphone.

Brad drains his birdie on 4

Yes, the ball is in the hole. Nice recovery after the "other" on 3.

Sent from my Sprint HTC smartphone.

Brad had a little tree trouble on three.

 Actually he had a lot of tree trouble on 3.

And pitching trouble. And putting trouble. The less said about this the better. I think we are bringing him down to our level.  BTW - this was my birdie (missed) and par (made) putts on three.

It's an easy game when you think about it. Get on in regulation. Two putt. How hard can it be?

Sent from my Sprint HTC smartphone.

Live Blogging Lincoln Park

With Brad, Rick, and Adam on a warm hazy morning.

Rick gave me a sleeve of these pink balls to reinforce my swing thought.

Sent from my Sprint HTC smartphone.

Sunday, July 6, 2014

19th Hole

BP 86
ZN 88
MS 93
MW 98

Even if I was the worst golfer in the group, it was a very good day.

After all, I broke 100 at Sharp. A bad golfer cannot ask for more. 

Oh yeah... Everyone had a  birdie in the round except me. But I am not bitter. 

Sent from my Sprint HTC smartphone.

Bob brings us home on 18

He is having a good round. So am I.  So say we all.

Sent from my Sprint HTC smartphone.

Zach gets out of the trap on 17...

... eventually.

Sent from my Sprint HTC smartphone.

Beer Hole on par three 15

 Bob and I teamed up against Mike and Zack for the two extra beers. Here I missed my birdie putt but got the par.

 Bob, OTOH, drained his birdie.  We kicked their ass. It was men against boys.

Pay off on the 16th tee. It was a very good beer.

Sent from my Sprint HTC smartphone.

Somewhere after the turn.

ZN 40
BP 44
MS 47
MW 51

This is the problem with playing with golfers who are better than you.

However, despite a very rough start, breaking 100 is still in reach.

It could happen.

Sent from my Sprint HTC smartphone.

Zach's eagle putt on 9...

... missed.
But he got the bird.

Sent from my Sprint HTC smartphone.

Teeing off on the par three 5th.

A tricky tee shot through a gauntlet of pines.

Sent from my Sprint HTC smartphone.

The original Mike is out of the trap on six

... way, way out.

Sent from my Sprint HTC smartphone.

Other Mike out of the trap on 3...

... and out of the woods on four.

And...who knows where he'll be playing from next?

 Sent from my Sprint HTC smartphone.

Live blogging Sharp Park

Bob, Other Mike, and Zach. All better golfers than me. Very poor planning on my part.

Sent from my Sprint HTC smartphone.

Friday, July 4, 2014

EssEff Fourth of July Fireworks from Russian Hill

Some years we get a clear view of the fireworks from our terrace on Russian Hill. Some years we do not. This year a high fog rolled in.  We could see the displays set for low and medium level, but the high blasts were lost. Still, they produced a very nice pastel colored fog bank.

Thought I'd try to capture the event with my new GoPro. The GoPro's wide angle let us pick up both the Pier 39 and Crissy Field displays, as well as the crowd gathering at the corner of Green an Jones to watch the event. I started the time-lapse about a half hour before the display, and unfortunately ran out of storage before the finale. We'll know better next time.