phillie phanatic at citizens bank park during a phillies game

Renata’s Guide to Watching a Sporting Event

So much to celebrate tonight! 

This evening, I’m out watching my cousin’s playoff soccer game at our local college (and missing Survivor, thank you very much) and the Phillies are in the world series! This can only mean one thing: it’s time for a Renata’s guide to watching a sporting event!

While these tips are primarily for watching games at the stadium, a lot of this can be done at home, too! Either way, I recommend eating everything in sight, spending way too much money, and faking a medical emergency to get out of a parking lot (in this case, I guess it would be your driveway?).

The tips sound great so far, right? Here we go!

I just love camping out of the back of a car

Tailgating is…not my favorite thing. I’m that person who “pregamed” with my sorority sisters by drinking water before a party, then when they went out, I went straight to bed. So you want me to do all of the socializing and all of the drinking and only give me a port-a-potty to go to the bathroom in? No, thank you.

If you’re like me and get burnt out of social situations easily, skip the tailgating and just get to the game on time like an upstanding citizen. If you like drinking in parking lots and making friends with randos, well then, we’re probably not going to the game together anyway.

The food is the most important part

Seriously. Go, eat peanuts and ice cream and cheesesteaks, and anything else your heart desires. Every true sports fan knows that the game isn’t complete unless you’ve eaten one of everything they have in the stadium. There’s a reason why the song goes “buy me some peanuts and crackerjacks.” They know that the food is the most important part of the game.

Give that wallet a workout

In the immortal words of one of my closest childhood friends, “I smell gift shop!” 

Whether or not you’ve come to the game fully equipped and donned in your favorite player’s jersey, there’s nothing like buying merch from the actual stadium during an actual game.

And at only a 300% markup! What a steal! (This is where I would make a joke about stealing bases and “stealing” as it relates to bargains…IF I HAD ONE).

Don’t root for the away team

Especially if you’re in Philly. Do not let them catch you with the opposing team’s jersey (or even their colors) unless you want to end up in an overturned port-a-potty.

Bring the right people

You can pick your friends, you can pick your team, you can pick who you bring to the game, but you can’t pick how they act at the game. Choose wisely. Who you bring with you to the game will dictate your entire experience. Now, I don’t mean you necessarily need to bring people who know exactly what’s going on every second, I mean people who come to the game ready to party. Give them a pre-game questionnaire if you have to.

Would you dance with the Phillie Phanatic if he called you up onto the top of the dugout? No? Then you are DEFINITELY not coming to the game with me…

Don’t be a stick in the mud

Sporting events are really a group activity. No matter who you go with, the second you enter that stadium, you are a part of the hive mind that is “the fans.” You are no longer an individual, just one limb on one entity. One very loud entity.

This comes with certain responsibilities. If everyone else is doing the wave, you do the wave. If everyone else is doing the Macarena, you do the Macarena. If everyone else is mocking a player on the other team, you mock the player, too. It’s all part of the game.

If you don’t lose your voice, you didn’t do it right

Screaming is part of the experience.

Did your team do something amazing? Scream.

Did the other team screw up? Scream.

Did you meet someone wearing the same team jersey as you? Scream.

Scream at the very top of your lungs. Scream like Jeff Probst when he tells the Survivor contestants to “Dig deep!” (Did I mention that I missed Survivor for my cousin’s soccer game? Best big cousin ever!).

Be prepared for the crash

Leaving a sporting event (even if your team won) is kind of a bummer. That really fun, energy-charged activity you went to do is over. You go back to being an individual after just having been one with the other tens of thousands of fans in the stadium.

It feels so lonely from the other side.

This individuality is apparent when you’re trying to get out of the parking lot and that person who was just hugging you as your team pulled ahead is now pulling ahead of you in the line to get out and go home. There’s no easy way to get out of the parking confusion that is a sporting event short of faking a medical emergency.

And now that you mention it, I think my pregnant friend’s water just broke…

Anyone else excited to go watch the world series now? I know I am! Let me know if there are any tips that I missed in the comments, and as always, GO PHILS!

3 thoughts on “Renata’s Guide to Watching a Sporting Event

  1. The last baseball game I went to (albeit a minor league game), I started a stadium-wide heckle. At first I was proud of my ability to lead, but then the crowd just wouldn’t stop; it was overkill 5 minutes in and it ended up lasting for over an hour!

    Liked by 1 person

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