Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Went to the Bucs game last Friday...

...and here's that report.
  • By the time we navigated the re-routing of all major streets, which forced us to drive about three miles south of the stadium before we could even turn left to double back north, it was only about a half hour before kick-off. I like to park in the neighborhood and walk over. For some reason, I feel better about giving some nice (albeit oppurtunistic) local residents my $10 instead of the authority that operates the stadium lots. Possibly because I get to feel like I'm supporting individuals exhibiting an entrepenurial spirit at the expense of the government, but more likely because I'm saving at least five bucks, even if it means a longer walk.
  • We sat in front of some people (seen above) who I think had just come from a bar, drank like they were at a bar throughout their time at the game and were going immediately back to a bar as soon as they left. Check out that picture: Yes, the guy is 50 (actual calendar age may be 35 with an accelerated aging factor, due to heavy drinking, of 15), the girl is maybe 23 and yes, she is totally planting a major (eyes closed!) wet one on him. Wow. I don't know these people but they insisted on having their picture taken with me, even though they weren't getting any copies of it. Wow again.
  • We were entertained throughout by Creepy Season Ticket Holder Guy who spent the entire game running up and down the stairs, high-fiving people and generally being a jackass. He was the kind of guy who doesn't have quite the commitment of a face-painter or costume-and-prop-bringer or even a shirt-not-wearer but who thinks his enthusiasm is so admired that it enhances the overall game day experience for all those around him. He probably imagines people having conversations about him the next day at work: "You didn't think the game was awesome? Well, you must not have been within high-fiving distance of the guy running up and down the stairs every time the Bucs netted more than 25 yards on a punt! He really made the game come alive for me and my family. I'm so glad he was there and can't wait to go there and see him again". He probably lists his appearances on the jumbotron on his resume. Or worse, he lists that, and how many times he's participated in (or started) a wave on custom trading cards with his picture in full Bucs uniform that he carries around with him and gives people. All of this is annoying but what kicks it into creepy is that at one point he begged the cheerleaders for some strings of beads (note: here in Tampa, the way you can tell you're participating in an officially sanctioned fun-filled public activity is that there are strings of beads present. It's a pirate thing, I guess) that he then gave to some kids. As though the kids wouldn't mind breaking the first parental commandment of not taking things from strangers because he's such a SuperFan and he's making the game more fun than it would be otherwise and therby changing their young lives for the better. God bless you, Creepy Season Ticket Holder Guy! Thank you for
  • At halftime, we decided to walk over and check out the pirate ship in the north end zone. Big mistake. Imagine trying to walk through the world's largest, hottest and most crowded outdoor singles bar as every-sweaty-body else is trying to go the other way. That's what that was like. if you'd like to re-create this experience for yourself, turn off your air conditioner, crowd into your smallest closet with six friends and have them rub hot buttered toast all over you. Yeah, you're welcome.
  • We saw a sidelines photographer with a mullet. I immediately named him 'Mulettographer'. I love the fact that his vest has a great big "7" in the middle of it. I sincerely hope whoever issues those vests before the game did that on purpose. Probably not, though. That doesn't detract from my enjoyment of the sweet, delicious irony of the mulleted phographic predator becoming mulleted photographic prey.
  • I am convinced that it is utterly impossible to leave the area around raymond James Stadium and not get stuck in a major traffic jam. Most people left late in the third quarter and it still took about 45 minutes to go the 1.7 miles from there to my apartment. Which makes me question why I didn't walk from home, save the $10 and celebrate my own entrepenurial spirit
  • Oh yeah, the Bucs won. I don't remember the score. And there is absolutely no reason why you should care.

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