Chix Chat Pro Football

Miss Jen's Etiquette Primer for Guests

Posted by Tuesday, September 28, 2010


Going to someone else's stadium to watch your team is a daunting task. Are the home team fans going to be nice to you? Are they understanding of the fact that you as a person are not bad, you just have questionable taste in teams and so the insults they hurl should not be to you directly?

I have read in the Baltimore Sun's editorial section, letters from fans of other teams who are appalled at the awful treatment and threats they feel they receive from Ravens' fans. They say they will never come back to Baltimore again because they do not feel safe.

Let’s face it…there are idiot Ravens fans. Maybe they have come across as threatening. But as a guest, you are entitled to the same 12th man rule which is to tell the Purple Shirt Guy if you are being harassed. Truly. If you are so fearful being at the Ravens stadium that you have to write a letter to the local paper and say that you are never, ever coming back, telling the Purple Shirt Guy is not being a tattle tale. But let's approach this honestly. Are you being a good guest?

ETIQUETTE FOR RAVENS GUESTS:

1) SHOW YOUR SPIRIT WHILE REMEMBERING WHERE YOU ARE:

The city where the stadium is located is your host. You are its guest. Keep that in perspective. Please dress like the fan you are! I have "Bead Guy" in my section. Ravens fans know exactly who I mean. He is the really nice guy who wears, what must be 15 lbs of beads around his neck. He also wears a camo fishing hat with tons of buttons pinned on it. He's always on TV, and you know why? He's a super nice guy. Bead Guy met his female match in "Orange Mohawk Lady" for the Browns. She looked awesome! She had on Brown's leggings and other real unusual fan gear that begged for people to look at her. We did. Bead Guy and Orange Mohawk Lady saw each other and shook hands. They had each met their opposite, and they worked it. They didn't interact during the game; the game was truly a nail biter and no one wanted to look away. They spoke as they were leaving, though. I don't know what they said, but I did hear them laugh.

2) DON'T LOOK FOR TROUBLE:

Two rows down and to the diagonal from me was a Browns fan who was dressed very similarly to how I would have dressed if at an away game. She wore a brown athletic skort and a brown top with a Browns orange and brown chunky bracelet with matching dangle earrings. She looked adorable. She knew what she was up against, and she was very engaging with the Ravens fans around her and the Browns fans in our section. She smiled and laughed and admitted that she was probably going home a loser and for the people within earshot to go easy on her. It would have been adorable if she had left it at that. The Browns led in the first quarter with a field goal. It was a bit of a shocker, I'll admit, but when the visiting team scores before the Ravens, I like to call it "being a gracious host by letting the visiting team get some numbers on the board."

So adorable girl stands up and turns around and mentions to the Browns fans a few rows behind her that those 3 points might be the only scoring they did. Then adorable girl starts taunting the Ravens around her and is suddenly no longer very adorable. She turns around with her back to the field and starts laying into the Ravens. Predictably, a Ravens fan tells her to sit down and watch the game or go home. She sits in her seat. The Browns get the ball. She lifts up her arm with the Browns chunky bracelet. I actually thought that was cute. What she did next leads me to etiquette point number 3.

3) KEEP YOUR FINGERS TO YOURSELF:

As a guest, you have no right to flip off your hosts. Unprovoked. You instantly go from being "adorable fan" to "embarrassment to Browns fans and women fans in general nightmare." I'll admit, it does not roll off the tongue, but it is what it is. Why this woman felt the need to turn around with her back to the field again and flip the section off with both hands is unknown. The Browns fans that were sitting behind her told her to "sit down and quit acting like a f-ing moron."

Thank you. On behalf of all the Ravens and Browns fan, man or woman, thank you for telling her that.

4) KEEP YOUR OPINIONS TO YOURSELF:

Ray Lewis is a murderer? Terrell Suggs is a thug? All Ravens are thugs? Really? Is that all you have? Keep it to yourself. If you are going to bring up the past, be careful because you are guaranteed to look like an idiot. You can have opinions on real situations; that bantering can be a little fun. I'll bet Bead Guy and Orange Mohawk Lady could have done that. I'll bet they could have talked injury reports and why the secondaries are so good and things like that.

If you are a good guest and are being treated maliciously or in a threatening way, by all means do something about it. Talk to Purple Shirt Guy. Write a letter to the editor of the Sun. But think back carefully before you jump into "anyone associated with the Ravens is a thug" rant. Come to Baltimore because you are the best fan ever for your team; do not come to start trouble. Your team wants you and needs you to root for them; you give them the energy they need.

Being a good fan is the best way to be the 12th man for your team.

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