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The art of the Masters Nap

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The Masters - Preview Day 3 Photo by Harry How/Getty Images

The chances of getting into Augusta National for the tournament start at slim, and narrow to none in years when the final rounds stay competitive. You’re probably not getting into the tournament, and even if you do it will cost you as much as a decent used car to get in —and that was before Augusta began cracking down on secondary ticket sales. The experience for most watching on TV will be just that: Watching on TV.

That’s fine. For a special few, the Masters represents everything good about the game of golf: Tradition, decorum, fair play, and, most importantly, elaborate landscaping. But for most people paying attention to the tournament, the Masters represents another tradition entirely, the tradition unlike any other contained within the Tradition unlike any other.

We’re talking about the tradition of the Masters Nap.

When does the Masters Nap happen?

Napping can happen any time during the Masters. Edit: It will happen, for a lot of reasons. The entire televised tournament is one long relaxing screensaver. The announcers’ whispering is basically ASMR. Even the transitions to commercial, usually the loudest part of a sports broadcast, are buffered with gentle piano music. At least 57 percent of all viewers watch the Masters for a good nap. This is a stat we made up but still stand by in its probable truth.

The Masters Nap, capitalized and official, should take place on Sunday, preferably between 1 p.m. and 4 p.m. These hours ensure not missing anything too important, and also take full advantage of the intersection of the most leisurely day of the week and the sweet whispers of America’s official white noise machine.

How should I prepare for my Masters Nap?

It is essential to take time and care into preparing for your Masters Nap. This is the only way to ensure peaceful and uninterrupted sleep. Eating a decent-sized meal before the nap will help slow down the body and prime the mind for falling off into a sleepy haze. Be wary of eating a meal too large or with lots of cured meat. Meat sweats and/or heartburn are a nap’s worst enemy. Also note that drinking more than two beers before a nap could be the fast track to waking up prematurely with a full bladder. Finding a blanket that is warm, but not too hot will help you both fall asleep and remain asleep without overheating. We suggest a blanket of the cable-knit variety.

How long is the Masters Nap?

Use your own discretion here. A general limit of two hours seems sensible enough, because after two hours you are no longer napping. “Napping” is for the distinguished gentleperson “looking to recharge for later work.” But “sleeping in the middle of the day” is just “sleeping in the middle of the day like some mangy porch cat.”

How does it work? Just find a flat or semi-flat surface and let the dulcet tones of Jim Nantz carry you to the land of Nod. Maybe have a beer, but just one, for the reasons previously discussed.

Will I be able to tell when someone changes the channel?

For some reason, yes, every time, and often while mumbling “hey I was watching that” without opening your eyes. It is a superpower you get for three to four hours a year. Do not waste it.

Will I miss anything?

No. Golf shoots out golf rays through the TV. Those rays are absorbed by the skin, which passes them into the bloodstream and then into the brain. When you wake up, you will remember highlights, quote ads that aired during your nap, an will have the full leaderboard in your head without effort. Golf is Tussin, just pour it over your self and it’ll get into your system somehow.

Where should I take this nap?

Ideally? If we have a blank check, and are napping around the world?

  • In a hammock at Yosemite, with feet up in 70-degree weather with the television positioned against the beautiful face of El Cap itself
  • In the Louvre on a couch with the TV strapped across the face of the Mona Lisa
  • In first-class on a plane crossing time zones to extend the two hours allotted for a Masters nap as long as possible by losing hours and thus going back in time
  • In the warm belly of a friendly whale with WiFi
  • On a porch swing in the outfield of a baseball game, so that you can simultaneously take your Masters Nap while also taking a mid-afternoon baseball nap
  • In an oceanside cabana with your good friend Gary Player, who will look at you disgustedly and do 500 pushups instead of napping
  • TOP SCORE: On the course at Augusta National itself in a hammock strung between two loblolly pines while watching a TV tuned to The Masters