Wednesday, January 17, 2007

That game

Everyone has one game that stands out in their minds as the most surreal experience at a live event. Whether you proposed marriage, broke up with a girlfriend, or saw someone engaging in a public sex act you remember the surroundings more than the game. Ours just happened to involve a ham sandwich.

The game was scheduled for noon vs. Miami. That meant a Friday night of drinking until 4 a.m. followed by an alarm set for 8 a.m to get that needed 4 hours of drinking. We strictly bypassed any food because it wasted time and required further drinking. During these years we still had seats in the student section. The WVU student section was a strange mix of hot women, drunks, random old dudes, loving couples, and the few there to watch the game. it was, to say the least, eclectic. If you presented the contents of the student section to George Lucas for the bar in Star Wars where Han Solo is introduced he would have told you that it was too weird and no one would believe it.

The only real memorable moment of the first half was five drunk girls slugging off of a plastic gallon of vodka. The girls had no purses or bags to get the alcohol into the game and wearing half shirts and skirts best described as a headband. I have no idea how they got the Vladmir in, but God bless them. Every guy in the section kept one eye on them and the other on the game. Every girl had a reaction of immediate hatred. It was beautiful.

In the game itself, WVU pulled within a single point late in the third quarter. Unfortunately, in the post TD celebration the Mountaineer's shotgun backfired. The mascot was down, on national t.v., due to his gun shooting himself in the face. He stayed down for about 15 minutes and actually required medical attention. During what was up to that point our shining moment on t.v. That Mountaineer was never the same. Every time he fired his gun you could see a slight recoil even though he held the gun 4 feet from his head to protect himself.

The fourth quarter started with two things, a bad call and some taunting between WVU and Miami fans a section over. A guy sitting next to us decided it was time to take matters into his own hands concerning the officials. He did the only thing an irrational drunken fan could. He threw his delicious ham sandwich onto the field. No where near a referee. But, it did land on the goal line with the bread blending it in. We became mesmerized as Miami marched down to to goal line for another score and ran play after play at the ham sandwich. Players from both sides came perilously close to disaster caused by delicious pig and mustard. It seemed like Miami ran off right tackle 100 straight plays at the goal line. Each one behind Kellen Winslow, Jr. Two aspects stood out about Winslow that day. First, he seemed bigger than anyone we had on defense and most of the Miami offensive line. Second, he was the biggest ass I'd ever seen. Constantly pointing, punching, and running his mouth after every play. He seemed to be the type of guy who looked at himself naked in a full length mirror, a lot. And used the word "fag" whenever possible. So during the goal line stand he continually tiptoed around this ominous ham sandwich. We wanted to see him slip on a hammy so freaking bad just to see it on Sportscenter with the injury report, "Winslow, out ACL tear, ham sandwich." But to no avail. Eventually Miami scored giving us an even greater chance for comedy. The flag squad carrying the "U" followed by "MIAMI" circled the enzone. Surely, one of these asshats would slip on a ham sandwich causing the flag to fly out of their hands and all the other "flags" to have to stop in horror. No, and to make matters worse a member of the grounds crew found the sammy before the next drive to our end zone.

While all of this was going on we failed to notice bad blood boiling just feet away. The earlier taunting had turned ugly as Miami put the game away. It started as a shove, then came another, then hell rained down. The section exploded in a brawl. Men fought women. Cats fought dogs. Dads fought sons. Lesbians fought penises. Well maybe not that bad, but about 15 guys started fighting each other. A fight in the bleachers is like a fight on a ski slope. There is no way to get adequate footing for any wrestling manuvers. There was more falling and rolling than actual punching. But, one guy did leap four rows to throw a flying jalapeno forearm at another human being. Police came to break it up. They would throw someone out of the section and grab another. Only, in Keystone Cops fashion, the first guy would come back in a fight some more. They threw one guy out four times. Another guy they quickcuffed and let go so he ran around kicking at people. Only one guy got hurt and of course it was a guy that had nothing to do with the fight. Just some random guy watching the game that got knocked down head first on a bleacher. About this time our section started yelling and pushing as they wanted some action, too. At this time we decided to head for higher ground. As we walked out of the section police were still trying to gather the people to throw out of the stadium. Instead, suspects were fleeing all over the place, some still in quickcuffs. We hit the trail home for our normal routine after a noon game. Food then turn the t.v. on and nap all afternoon to college football. I do remember that WVU lost. And I don't think anyone ever ate that delicious sammy.

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