Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Miller Park Etiquette

Warning, mini-rant ahead:

I’ll admit to being crotchety at times at Miller Park. I’m not “you kids get off my lawn,” but I do expect to be able to see the game I paid to see. I don’t think this is too much to ask. I admit to being grumpy on occasion and there are times when my patience is a little thin, but for the most part, I think I’m pretty accepting.

But I also think that your enjoyment of the game shouldn’t infringe on mine.

I think if you’re bringing children to the game, you also have to be willing to entertain them or bring along things that will keep them occupied. When you’re sitting in the second to last row of Terrace Reserved, your 6-year-old daughter is not going to sit still for three hours. But just because you didn’t bring her a coloring book doesn’t mean that I should have to be unable to see the entire home plate area as she stands/dances/plays on her chair while you’re blissfully ignorant 10 seats away, drinking a beer and watching the game.

At the end of last season at the Ryan Braun grand-slam game, a young girl was behind me with her dad and he was continually yelling at her to sit down and be still and I felt so bad for her. He clearly wanted to be at the game and couldn’t find anyone else to watch her. He didn’t bring her anything to occupy her and he got impatient with her any time she tried to talk to him. That poor girl. A parent would never think of leaving their child unoccupied for three hours at home, so I’m not sure why they’d do it at the stadium – especially when they’re so far from the field. You child can’t even see the game, much less understand what’s going on. Next time, spring for better seats or spend the kids ticket money on a babysitter for three hours.

I also think that just because you think you’re entertaining means that I should have you screaming literally in my ear for three hours. I’m talking to you, guy in 422 row 18 on Sunday.

Yes, you are quite clever with your Corey Hart sunglasses comments, but I doubt he can hear you from the upper deck.

Puns with Micah Owings’ last name are indeed witty, but lose their luster after the third or fourth try.

When people don’t laugh the first time around, don’t take that as encouragement to make the same joke a few more times.

Telling your mentally disabled brother to put his glove out every time a foul ball was hit, though they were both 20 sections away and two sections lower than us, is both cruel and infinitely annoying.

The headache I had by the second inning was reason enough to move seats, but the three off-color racial remarks were kind of the last straw for me. We moved to lower in the section about the fourth inning and enjoyed the rest of the game peacefully. But that shouldn’t have been necessary.

I’m not sure what it is about the turnstiles at Miller Park that transform regular people into inconsiderate jags, but sometimes it really irks me. How can people be so oblivious to the fact that that they aren’t the only people there? You’re literally with 42,000 people – you even play a game on the Jumbotron to guess how many people are sitting there with you – and you don’t realize that standing up to wave to your friend for an inning and a half is blocking the view of everyone behind you?

The obliviousness shocks me sometimes and it scares me that these are the people that will be in cars near me on my ride home. If you can stand in the exit of the section while 1,000 or so people push past you, jostle you and generally have to work to get around you while you, blissfully ignorant, carry on a conversation about JJ Hardy’s hotness, what happens when you’re insulated in your car, on your cell phone?

Thankfully, the Brewers announced a new text program where you can text your seat location and ushers will come and make sure everyone is behaving. Trust me, I’ll be having this number on speed dial.

1 comment:

hawing said...

Good post. I hardly know where to start!

We've had family section season tickets going back to County Stadium, so we see a lot of kids - many of whom just aren't old enough to bring to a game yet. They can't hold still for the length of the game (and no adult wants to take them to the play area), they kick the back of the seat in front of them, they play in the stairwells, etc. Either the parents don't realize it or don't care - discouraging, either way.

Unfortunately, as you know, there is no age limit for obliviousness. People are up and down from their seats in the middle of an at-bat all the time, no matter where we sit. We've had people want to walk past us during the national anthem. Seriously!

The Miller Park staff are just as oblivious to that behavior, which is disappointing because they could go a long way toward setting the tone of waiting for a stoppage in play to move around.

I won't even start on people who throw a fit once they realize they're in a family section and no, you really can't drink in the section. (Oh, wait, I just did start.) There are 150-some sections in Miller Park and you can drink in all but four of them. Don't take it out on the people who chose to sit there if you didn't pay attention when choosing your tickets. (And don't forget to have this tirade in front of your kids.)