So, the fifth question thrown Payne's way - which is about the norm - dealt with you know what.
Once again he declined to address the issue, citing club policy.
"We especially don't talk about it when a named candidate is a part of the question," Payne said.
The subject would come up seven more times, including followups. There would be no comment, even when it was tied to the fact that his introductory remarks had included concerns about finding ways to grow the game. Even when he was asked what he would tell his granddaughters.
"Well, my conversations with [them] are also personal," Payne said.
He did allow that this stance might reflect negatively on the club and the tournament.
"I think there's certainly a difference of opinion on that, and I don't think I have formed an opinion on that," he said.
If you were expecting more, you came to the wrong place. And apparently, at least for now, still the wrong time.
Of course, if Augusta does ever get a female member, the green jackets wouldn't talk about that either.
It's their right. Just as it's everybody else's right to keep asking.
Luke Donald is the top-ranked golfer in the world rankings, just ahead of Rory McIlroy. So why is he flying under the radar at the season's first major, especially since he tied for fourth here a year ago?
Well, it could have something to do with the fact that the 34-year-old Englishman, who went to Northwestern and now calls Chicago home, has only three other top-five finishes in majors: a third in his 2005 Masters debut, a distant third at the 2006 PGA when he played in the last group on Sunday with eventual champ Tiger Woods and a fifth at the 2009 British Open that Tom Watson lost in a playoff.
"I think it goes back to thinking that I need to do more than I actually realize I do," said Donald, who will tee off at 10:46 on Thursday morning with Francesco Molinari and Nick Watney in the group behind the Woods threesome. "This last year has really helped me to kind of figure that out. I've been able to win tournaments without playing my best golf, and I think majors is a similar deal.
"I think a lot of people put too much pressure on yourself, and you go out there and you press a little bit too hard, and suddenly you're a few shots back and trying to play catch-up. Knowing that just playing my game is good enough is a good thought to have for me."
He didn't play in Wednesday's par-3 contest, even though he was the defending champ. Nobody has ever won that and gone on to also get the green jacket.
"Last year I actually had a very focused goal of trying to win both of them, to defy convention," Donald said. "I had a good chance. But this year I'm just going to concentrate on the main one."
Because, really, who needs to be known as the best golfer to never have won a major.
This year's par-3 winners were three-time major champ Padraig Harrington and Jonathan Byrd, at 5-under 22 for nine holes. The tourney was cut short by an afternoon thunderstorm.
Player a starter
Three-time Masters champ Gary Player will join four-time champ Arnold Palmer and record six-time winner Jack Nicklaus as an honorary starter on Thursday morning. He sounds stoked. But when doesn't he?
"It's going to be very special," Player said. "I always loved the history of golf. I stood there and watched Jock Hutchison hit off the first tee and watched that incredible swing Sam Snead hit off the first tee. So it's got a lot of wonderful memories for me.
"The minute they asked me I said yes. I've been training very hard. I've just come from the gym right now, in fact. I increased my sit-ups and my weights. Absolutely. We've been very competitive."
The 76-year-old South African played in 52 of these things from 1957-2009 (missing only 1973). His last win was in 1978.
"It's like a journey," he said. "You arrive as a young man, and you drive in those magnificent gates. And it's remarkable to see the changes over the years. You come here and you're in awe. And you meet Arnold and you meet Jack and you spend your entire careers with them. So the timing was right.
"We have a great love for each other and a great respect for each other. It's a great honor for me, because I hold this course in high esteem. Best organized tournament I've ever played in."
And now he's again part of it.