Friday, November 07, 2008

...the one where I explain how I became ONE of them...

So, before we last spoke, MomCat was explaining to you how difficult her son's tackle football season had been for the whole family, but also how in many ways she'd seen her son toughen up and mature from the experience. And, while she still didn't feel like she meshed completely with the overly-intense football moms on his squad, she was starting to feel a little more "with it" at least.

Well, there's nothing like witnessing disgusting sportsmanship and sitting two feet from the most ridiculous parents/fans of a pee-wee football team, to make a girl bond with her football moms. Through the course of one game, I learned that really things could be much worse...and definitely much more intense.

It was a typically game scenario--my husband does the books for the team and assists the coach during games. Both my son and he have to be there 45 minutes before each game to "warm up" and do all that he-man-testosterone kind of football bonding.

This translates into me being left to entertain my antsy 4-year-old, who hates football games more than anything, for about three hours straight. A few weeks ago, I learned something that seems to help kill the time--we dump and run until the game starts. So, after dropping my son and husband off, we took off for a lovely football-free feast at a nearby sandwich shop. Large sale signs then pulled us to a favorite clothing store for browsing. We had the time, I told myself.

After finding tons of great deals for my daughter and son, we left and it dawned on me that, um, the game started like 5 minutes before that. Nice...sigh...

Still hoping that they'd been delayed, we arrived only to find we'd almost missed the entire first quarter. Of course, I felt like a boob--like someone had stapled a note card to my head that said, "Hello? Bad football mom here!" I tucked my tail between my legs and crept into the stands trying as not to raise attention to myself. Guilt-ridden, I decided not to plant myself in the middle of all the good football moms, for fear of having to explain myself. Instead, I'd try to sit to the edge, and somewhat in the middle of both sides of fans.

That's when I noticed one of the friendlier football moms, motioning to me urgently to come and sit closer to her. Wow! I thought. How nice! Have I finally made a football mom friend?
"You don't want to sit there. BELIEVE me." She said somewhat angrily when I sat behind her.

Puzzled, I sat down and turned my focus to the game. It didn't take more than 30 seconds for me to realize what she was talking about.

"RIP HIS HEAD OFF! RIP HIS HEAD OFF!" An angry opposing fan screamed, in reference to our quarterback.

Well, my goodness, I thought. That sounds a little intense!
"HURT HIM! HURT HIM GOOD!" She screamed again as she stood up and pointed towards our player, apparently directing her son (or the entire team) feverishly.

I looked around at our team's football moms. Each had their shoulders up, making their trying-to-look-casual-in-a-team-T-yet-remaining-overly-made-up-demeanor much stiffer.

"Do you see why I motioned for you to sit here? You should have SEEN what went on during the first quarter," the friendly mom shared with me. "I'm looking them up RIGHT NOW!" And, with that, she frisked out her crackberry and began frantically typing.

Soon after, a very large and definitely out-of-shape man began running in the front of our teams fans whenever the players on the field moved in that direction. As he ran and scream near-profanities, our entire stands shook in his wake.

"KILL THEM! HIT THEM HARD!" He angrily shouted.

"I found it! I found it!" The angry crackberry mom announced as she turned to tell every fan on our side the name of the school we were playing. And, the scary screaming woman from the other side shouted even more.

It went on like this, and seemed to get even worse to me, although the football moms insisted that it was better than it had been that first quarter. The opposing fan display was so bad, in fact, that the screaming woman kept right on screaming her support even during half-time when there were no players on the field.

"Does she know that they aren't playing right now" I asked friendly football/crackberry mom.

"Apparently, NOT! I think this must be a blue-collar type of team or something," she cracked.

The game was very close and, while our team was actually much better than this team, their players and coaches poor sportsmanship and rough play seemed to match their scary fans. Their players would throw off their helmets when a call went against them and stop around like angry two-year-olds. My son swears he even saw a player run by and slap at one of our team's coaches. The refs, eventually just gave up and started calling ridiculous calls in the scary team's favor. Perhaps they feared the consequences if not. My husband later told me their coach didn't shake the other coach's hands at the end of the game.

I made a discreet phone call to my husband in the middle of the game.
"Look, I know you are busy," I quietly said. "But I am going to need for you to watch for us after the game if we win. I'm a little frightened that we won't make it to the car."

And on and on it went, as we enduring the screaming woman and the running fat man and the horrible demands they were spewing out of their mouths to their players.

When the game was neck-and-neck and with only minutes left, our football moms had really had enough. They began stopping their feat loudly, shaking the stands in one big suburban mom show of unity and support. Hoop earrings swayed and padded football chairs rocked as a very wholesome-looking Grandmother screamed out and glared at the opposing fans,

Wow, I didn't see that one coming, I thought.
The buzzer sounded and unfortunately our team lost by one touchdown. But, the friendly, crackberry football mom was not going to let their fans get the last word in if she could help it.
"I'm SORRY!" She screamed as she stood up and looked up at the obnoxious fan next to us. "I wasn't AWARE that this was the SUPER BOWL!" And, with that, she grabbed her pee-wee football paraphernalia and stormed out of the stands.

When it was all said and done, I felt like I'd sort of bonded with these football moms with whom I'd previously felt no connection. Like we'd united from the trauma of it all. That, and I learned something very important that game--apparently, pony-tailed, hat-wearing football moms with too much makeup and jewelry on are NOT be trifled with...

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

Some kind of blue-collar team? That's perhaps the most unimaginably ignorant and offensive way to comment on inappropriate behavior, and I hope you said as much to this woman. Unbelievable.

7:04 PM, November 09, 2008  
Blogger Crazy MomCat said...

For, anonymous...not sure why you felt you needed to be anonymous, as I didn't make those comments and take no offense to your assesment of them.

I actually didn't say anything to her. But it does establish why I hadn't felt a connection really to these women initially. And, probably won't in the future even though we bonded over this scary experience.

In the end, the other team's behavior and their parent's behavior was so atrocious (incidentally I'd have thought it was horrible as well if they were spoiled rich kids from the nicest part of town too, I assure you!) that it sort of got forgotten until I wrote this post!

8:53 PM, November 09, 2008  
Blogger kristi said...

LOL...some parents and coaches need to chill out. It IS just a game!

10:02 AM, November 10, 2008  

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