The old man was telling stories now, about Gene Sarazen and Byron Nelson and Sam Snead, about the Crow's Nest and Amen Corner, about old rivals and the way the course used to be when he was young.
If nothing else, the Masters brings out the lore in a golfer, and Tiger Woods, long in the Tiger tooth, fell into the familiar rhythm of a man who had seen many things. He talked about his first victory, about his rickety knee, about his beard such as it is, about kids today, about the new balance of his life the way old folks often do.
He is no longer a young man, Tiger Woods. He has been to 19 of these Masters — 19 — and he is now an impossible 37 years old. We have seen Tiger the dominator, and Tiger the champion, and Tiger the intimidator, and Tiger the scandalous, and Tiger the injured.
Tuesday, he was Eldrick the Elder.
And, really, isn't it about time Woods hauled in another one of these Masters?