Monday, September 22, 2008

Observations from the Footy

As you may or may not have read yesterday, the Handsome Australian and I went to the Footy on Friday night . Here are my promised footy observations:

1. When the ball goes out of bounds and lands somewhere amongst the crowd, the people in the crowd throw the ball back in so the players can keep playing. Never once have I seen anyone taking a "souvenir" ball. It simply isn't done. The ball is tossed back to the umpire or nearest player and the play resumes. End of story. I'm a fan of this tradition. Apparently the same is true for Cricket where the condition of the ball (ie newness or being worn out, etc) has a huge effect on the game.

2. The Footy fans are VERY VOCAL. I'll admit, I've never attended an NFL game in the USA, but I have been to my fair share of NBA games and I never heard the kind of taunts and tirades that were being shouted out at top volumes on Friday night. It was actually really humorous to listen to.

3. Access to alcoholic beverages is limited and what type of drink you can get varies depending on where you are sitting. This is going to sound totally odd, but there is a section within the MCG called the MCC (Melbourne Cricket Club) which is a members only section. If you are a member or a guest of a member, you can sit in this section, but you aren't allowed to consume alcohol in your seat while watching the game. There are bars on each level of the MCC where you must go inside and order your drink and consume it there. This means these bars are lonely places during the game time and become overrun with beer guzzling fans during quatertime and halftime breaks. It was incredible the way the crowd would rush the place during the breaks. (I know because Brother number four got us good seats in this section--have I mentioned how much we like Brother number four?)

In other areas of the MCG where the general public can sit, you can purchase beer at a concession stand and consume it at your seat. The trick here is the beer isn't full strength meaning the alcohol content is about half that of a proper beer (or half the strength of the ones the people in the MCC area are drinking in their bars).

4. Every man sitting around us had a small radio in his hand and the earpiece in his ear to listen to the coverage of the game on the radio. As if being there in the flesh wasn't enough. I asked the Handsome Australian about this one, but he couldn't hear me over the sound of the radio commentator in his ear.

5. About a quarter of the way through the game, a flock of seagulls took to the field and just hung around for the duration of the match. This is not uncommon as I've seen it at other footy matches, but on Friday night I just thought how annoying it must be to the players to have all these birds flying around on the field. Not to mention how frustrating it was a spectator to try and figure out where the ball was among the birds. (I mentioned this observation to the Handsome Australian, and so deep was his concentration on the game, it took him until halftime to respond at which point he said, "What birds?" So apparently they don't distract everyone.)

6. I should come to the footy more often, there is some serious eye candy on the field. I mean, serious football talent. That's what I meant. Really.

Overall, it was a good night and a good win for Geelong. Now if they can win the Grand Final this coming weekend, the Handsome Australian will be as happy as Larry.

Learn the Lingo
Happy as Larry = really happy, satisfied, content

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