NORTON — Beer. You have to factor in the beer.
It doesn’t start flowing until 11 a.m., when purveyors at TPC Boston start selling it — and, at some pavilions, much harder stuff — to thirsty adults attending the Deutsche Bank Championship.
Until then, the drink of choice is coffee, much preferred by the half-awake as they gather zombie-like at the course at crack-of-dawn hours to watch professionals hit white spheres with precision.
Once the booze starts flowing, though, it flows like a river, this being a premier event on a holiday weekend on the edge of summer.
And by afternoon, the alcohol takes hold and inhibitions fade.
Then, along the gallery, shouts break out here and there, as well as calls of “mashed potatoes” and “Baba Booey,” which, for the uninformed, are in vogue among a rambunctious lot of golf fans.
The former was belted out by a man in yellow shorts in his early 20s after Tiger Woods teed off on No. 15 Friday. The latter yell emerged from the gallery after Adam Scott teed off on No. 6 Friday, then again Saturday, when Woods was on No. 12.
It’s unclear why those chants became popular. What is known: mashed potatoes are a popular side dish and “Baba Booey” is the nickname of Gary Dell’Abate, a radio producer on “The Howard Stern Show.”
There have always been preferred terms for fans to howl on the course. “Get in the hole!” is a favorite whenever anyone tees off. “Sit” and “stay” are instructions when the ball is on the green.
Regardless, these new, more exotic terms seem to rail against accepted etiquette in the “gentlemen’s game,” and it’s made headlines lately, namely that Keegan Bradley enjoys them while Ian Poulter does not.
Bradley, a Woodstock, Vt., native, said he likes the “Baba Booey” shouts and actually has that name inscribed on a wedge, which he unveiled during an appearance on Stern’s “The Wrap-Up Show.’’
“I’m just a big Howard Stern fan,” Bradley said after posting a 6-under-par 65 Saturday, placing him in an 11-way tie for ninth at 8-under 134.
“I like being a part of the show,” Bradley added. “I grew up listening to it. It’s fun for me to hear people shout that out.”
Bradley said he was given about 150 tickets for family and friends and has about that many here, yet there was little beyond typical applause and whoops during his second round.
Someone did elongate a loud pronunciation of “sexy” when Bradley’s tee shot on the par-3 third landed within 7 feet. He made the birdie.
However, Bradley’s round started in the morning, hence the beer/alcohol factor. It wasn’t until the afternoon that rowdiness picked up, especially when Woods’s round began around 1:10 p.m.
But, with regard to the above phrases referencing a side dish and a radio producer, the Deutsche Bank Championship has been quite tame compared with the Barclays at Liberty National last weekend.
It was during that event in Jersey City that Poulter took to Twitter to voice his dislike of those shouters: “The good news of today was only 1 donut shouted out Baba Booey and he was swiftly removed from the premises.”
A PGA Tour official later confirmed that “a fan was removed for disrupting play as he yelled during Ian Poulter’s backswing.”
Earlier in August, Poulter used Twitter to go after such spectators, noting that those who shout such terms do so because “It makes up for there [sic] inadequacy in other areas.”
He later sent out more tweets on the subject. Among them:
■ “We should be allowed to take 10,000 volt tazers onto the course and tazer ever [sic] muppet who shouts out something stupid. I would laugh then.”
■ “This baba boo [expletive] & mash potato crap shouting wouldn’t happen at Augusta, The Open, nor would it happen at Wimbledon. Tazer the thrushes.”
■ “Is this the atmosphere we are asking for in golf. Golf is a game of respect and honesty. Not stupid outbursts. BA Boom.”
Poulter, let the record show, is at 8-under 134 after shooting a 3-under 68 Saturday. Like Bradley, he is tied for ninth.
There were no reports of patrons shouting “mashed potatoes” or “Baba Booey” at him, either.Baxter Holmes can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter at @BaxterHolmes