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When I was really into golf a long time ago -- playing two, three times a week -- this was my favorite time of year to watch the game on TV, even more than the big events like the Masters. Being in the Northeast as it turned ugly cold, I relished the escapism of watching as the PGA Tour got started with the players in their short sleeves on lush green fairways under sunny skies.

This weekend marks the start of the PGA season and it doesn't seem the same as it did years ago.  Despite the structure of the FedEx Cup, the tour just doesn't seem to have the same cohesiveness, the same rhythm that it did as it made its way from the West to Florida, then up the Eastern seaboard with the majors as milestones along the way.  And this year's  grand opening isn't nearly so grand even though the first tournament is being played in a beautiful setting like Maui (the second event is on Oahu next week).  Both Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson are sitting out the opener leaving Jim Furyk as the top player in the field.

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Meanwhile, we have this golf story out of Australia.  A python mistook four golf balls for birds' eggs and swallowed them.  The good news is that surgery was required to save the snake from what can be considered a world record four-in-one.

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