Saturday, October 4, 2008

What Is the Sound of One Key Jangling?

I went to a Minnesota Gophers football game today, against the Indiana Hoosiers. It was my first time attending a college game. On a scale of 1 to 10, 10 being the most fun I've ever had, it was a 5. Actually, it was more like 5.4, so let's be generous and give it a 6. I went with my friend Loretta*, who had season tickets and hasn't been using them like she should. She was well trained in all the traditional yells and gestures, which was useful. If she hadn't been there, I would have wondered about a lot of things. For example, anytime there is a kickoff you have to take out your keys and jangle them. As luck would have it, I only had one key, because I wanted to travel light, and it wasn't attached to a key chain, so there was no noise when I jangled it. I felt about 20% more foolish than all of the other people waving their keys around.

It was suggested that I wear maroon and/or gold, but if I didn't have those colors, to at least not wear red and white, the Hoosier colors. I wore brown and blue. Pretty safe. We sat next to a couple of Hoosiers, one of whom was wearing a fire-engine red sweatshirt with the word "INDIANA" in emblazoned on the front in 400-pt font. He reminded me of the kid from the movie Superbad:

I was a little worried about these guys, especially the Superbad boy, because I had been told that there are special, rude traditions acted out on people wearing the opposing team's colors. I was also worried about Loretta and myself, since we were talking to them. I didn't have much to worry about; the crowd was well behaved, except for one Lord-of-the-Flies moment. A fan in the row in front of us had had a little too much to drink, and was passed out sitting up in his seat. Poor guy. He reminded me a little bit of this guy:

His "friends" were balancing bottles on his head and taking pictures of him, and the jumbotron camera guy suggested that we (the crowd as a unit) remove the Indiana sweatshirt from this guy:

and put it on this guy:

so that the camera guy would get some good fodder for the jumbotron. Superbad boy obligingly took off his sweatshirt (he kind of had to in this situation) and drunk guy's "friends" put the sweatshirt on him. Everyone was happy. It was like Christmas.

*Name changed, new friend, haven't mentioned her before.

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