I’m not sure when Friday night football games became a place where free babysitting was offered.
The husband and I were looking forward to the last home game of the season for my son’s high school team. They were undefeated so we knew it was going to be a good game. And the kid is in the band, so that makes it even more fun to go see them perform.
We got there about an hour before kickoff. I like to sit toward the top so we can see the entire field (as pictured above–but cropped as this has been formatted to fit your screen). When we first got there, two young girls (like under 10) were playing with a giant green bouncy ball in the bleachers. I was already annoyed with that but the husband talked me down because they weren’t bothering us. At least not yet. But it didn’t take long for the green ball to wander over in front of us, hit me in the leg and then bounce down the steps. Husband told them to go do it elsewhere. I gave them the Mom Hairy Eyeball. When you have kids, you perfect this when they’re little to put the fear into them.
They sat down a ways but the older one was pounding the bleacher with her hands. As you know, this reverberates down the entire length of the bleacher. I gave them the hairy eyeball again and a few minutes later they skipped down the steps. It’s interesting to note they came back sometime in the second quarter but didn’t hang out long because of the large group of teenagers behind us–I’ll get to that in a second. Mom shows up briefly and ushers them back down the steps. I wonder why that mom thinks is perfectly okay for her two young girls to be wandering around the upper portion of the stadium alone. Perhaps I’m an overprotective mother, but if they were my girls, I sure wouldn’t.
About that time, a couple of boys decided to start tossing a football back and forth. I’m sure you can see how annoying that would be. One of the band dads sitting on the end of a row turned and told them to stop. One of the kids mouthed off and he stood and said, “Do you want me to take it away from you?” That stopped that for a bit but the boys found another way to “entertain” themselves.
Anyway, the stands started to fill up as the kickoff neared. There were two families with small kids–also all under the age of 10 including a toddler–that came up and were on the same row as us but over a ways. One couple had three little girls. The other couple had a little girl and the toddler.
As the game commenced, the teens behind us started a game of toss with an empty bottle of Big Red. They lost control of it and it bounced down the bleachers and landed right behind me. Husband glared. I reached back and stuck it under me thinking it would be the last of it. Silly me.
What I realized as we sat there and were increasingly annoyed by these kids was that the parents dropped them off with a wad of cash to get whatever they wanted at the concession. And they did. Quite a lot bottled sodas. Through the first half of the game, they had a game of keep-away with a half-full bottle of orange soda. Imagine, if you will, the plastic bottle slamming against the concrete and spewing. The family in front of them managed to avoid the mess.
Then these kids decided to toss the bottles over the opening of a walkway from one section to another. One couple behind us left and the woman muttered that was all the “teenager” she could stand. Another group of older guys left after that though I think they came for the band only. As the kids got louder and rowdier with the bottles, it ran off the couple with the toddler and the little girl.
Towards the middle of the third quarter, things got out of hand. All of a sudden the guy with the small girls leaps to his feet, turns around and yells, “Stop it, you assclaps!”
Okay, the word assclaps here is shear brilliance here (we laughed a lot about that later). That kid looked like he was about to shit his pants. The guy was tall, slender and really, really, really pissed. Apparently they were throwing food too and he’d had enough with them. A Hispanic woman two rows up who hadn’t been paying attention THE ENTIRE TIME this had been going on THEN decides to get involved because she didn’t like he called the kids assclaps. That was mild as to what they should have been called. They could have been collared and escorted out of the stadium. But alas… Anyway, he got into a shouting match with the woman and her husband had to break it up.
Meanwhile, the kids calmed down somewhat but the guy with the little girls was so pissed they packed up and left. I can’t blame him. After a few quiet minutes, they started back up again throwing the bottles. By now, the husband had had enough and got up, walked up the steps and told them to stop it with the infamous Harrison Ford pointy finger. “Stop. You know what that means? JUST STOP.”
Okay so they stopped for a bit but they started back up again throwing bottles back and forth.
And then the husband was really pissed. By the end of the third quarter, he’d had it. He got up again and went back to the kids. I could hear his voice but not what he said. He came back with an armload of empty bottles! He took them all away from them and shoved them under the bleacher. He said he told them to give them to him and when one wouldn’t, he said, “Do you want me to take it?” The kid handed it over. This just makes me giggle because I can imagine that kid’s eyes wide as saucers as he handed over the bottle. Hey, the husband doesn’t mess around when it comes to stuff like that. If he’s mad, you know it and you should do what he says. What they failed to realize was the beast within. It’s like poking a sleeping bear–you just don’t do it if you know what’s good for you. 😉
But we’d had enough with them, too, so we grabbed our stuff and left, taking the empty bottles with us.
Here’s the thing, though. All we wanted to do was enjoy the final regular season football game after a long hard week at work. It was pretty much ruined by these heathens.
And here’s my PSA: Your kids may be angels at home, but when you turn them loose unsupervised at a high school football game, they turn in to annoying children who don’t know how to behave. No one should have to put up with that and we, as adults, should not have to babysit these kids at a game we paid money to see.
I guess I don’t understand that kind of behavior because I wasn’t raised that way. I respected others around me and other adults. I didn’t talk back to them because I knew I’d get my butt kicked by my parents if I did.
This isn’t going to stop us from going to future games, though. Oh, no. If anything, we’ll be ready for them next year. I can’t wait.