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Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Forget Miss Manners at NFL Games

Why mince words? If you are going to attend a National Football League game, especially a playoff event like this weekend's Giants vs. 49ers encounter, don't expect to see a lot of customers who behave right out of the Miss Manners handbook. Etiquette is not in the cards. There is plenty of excessive drinking, foul language, threatening gestures and, yes, fights. What a surprise. Have you checked out what's happening down on the field? There, every play features multiple examples of violence and intent to commit bodily harm. If these behaviors were to occur out on the street, they would be considered felonies and the perpetrators would be arrested. But it's all legal in the NFL, or almost so. It depends on the referees. Meanwhile, back in the stadium (whether it's Candlestick Park or any other NFL venue) far too many civilians seem to feel that they, too, must get into the hyper-competitive act. The parking lot is no bargain either. That's where much of the heavy boozing occurs. In fact, you can almost gauge the importance of the impending ballgame by the amount of liquor being consumed around the arena prior to kickoff. With all of that alcohol consumption, it means that restrooms and other public facilities are landmines. Say the wrong thing, wear the wrong sweatshirt and you may find yourself up against a wall. What's the solution? Stay home. Watch the game on TV. Why endure the abuse? Save your money.

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