The modes of
dress were safely hung in Congressional closets by March, and Mrs. Battles was
able to turn her attention to such things as modes of smell and modes of
makeup. "A large cosmetics house has been terribly excited about our
Open," she confides. The terrible excitement has been made manifest in
several exotic ways. The cosmetic firm has already produced an "Evening of
Fragrance" in the Congressional clubhouse. The Evening of Fragrance
consisted of cosmetic-detail boys and girls liberally dousing the crowd with
"intimate perfumes" and "masculine colognes." Ah, there is a
vision worth conjuring up: Walter Hagen at an Evening of Fragrance.
The same cosmetic
firm has also furnished compacts for the 125 uniformed—mode-of-dressed—ladies
who will act as officials during the Open. "The compacts are lovely,"
says Mrs. Battles, "and the lipsticks and powders are selected to
complement our colors."
Ladies being as
they are, suppose they do not use the red, white and blue complementing
preparations? "We will have an inspection each morning," says Mrs.
Battles. But suppose they just do not want to, even after morning muster?
"Well, I suppose if some individual were so uncooperative as to spoil the
whole effect, we would just have to take away her mode of dress."
suggestion that there could possibly be such a thing as a Congressional member
who was less than thrilled at the prospect of hosting the U.S. Open sounds a
faint downbeat note in the otherwise lively proceedings. Such things as the
toughened golf course, closing off certain sections for refurbishing, not being
able to enter the grounds of their own club during the Open without buying a
ticket, fretting about possible damage to the club and the financial risks have
all contributed to a little muted, underground griping.
However, it is
obvious that, as Murphy and other Open advocates claim, the vast majority of
the members are solidly behind the project. Any sizable opposition party would
have made it impolitic for Congressional to seek the Open and impossible to
have prepared for it so successfully. Considering the time, money and nervous
energy that a club must expend in getting ready for this tournament, the real
wonder is that so many members want the Open, not that a few oppose it.
"Actually, the Open is our easiest tournament to place," says the
USGA's Hannigan. "The selection committee has five or six clubs to choose
from each year."
prestige," is the reason advanced by member after member at Congressional.
"Maybe 100,000 golfers are going to be here. Millions are going to read
about it and see it on TV. If I go to Arizona, Florida, anywhere, and they say,
'Where do you play?' when I say Congressional they are going to say, 'Oh yeah,
that's where they had that great Open. Beautiful course.' "
There is also the
possibility that they may say, oh yeah, that was the red, white and blue Open,
or the place with police dogs, or the course where a baby was delivered on the
9th tee. However, as the man said, nothing great is achieved without suffering.
Next year St. Louis.