Cherished in high school culture and marked by the start of the school year, football season is beloved by many. Jocks, cheerleaders, marching band enthusiasts, ‘leaders’ of the student section, and devoted fans all merge to show their school spirit like one big happy Cavalier family. What a beautiful, stereotypical image. Excuse me while I gag, ICK.
Okay, I’m back. Many may be wondering right now: why would she hate football games? Does she have any fun? She must be a *insert whatever descriptive expletive of preference.*
Maybe it’s because I’m a bit of a stickler, maybe it’s because I’m an eighty year old trapped in a seventeen year old’s body, BUT, I would rather do anything else than go to a football game.
To preface, I’ve been to football games where I didn’t have an absolutely awful time. Also I willingly participated in dance team, in which I was required to attend games. Some may think this makes me a hypocrite, but hear me out. I support the idea that everybody should go to at least one game, especially during their freshmen and senior years. It’s an experience that only feels the same when you’re actually in high school; however, I don’t think high school game are worth all the hype and here are some major reasons why.
Reason one: students use the “theme” as an excuse to dress with the most minimal amount of clothing that they can. I don’t want to see your stomach, I don’t want to see the “quirky” handprints on your butt or your chest, and I most definitely don’t want to see your entire body in nothing but spandex. It’s quite sad and a little vile. If I ever tried to leave the house with a one ply piece of fabric that’s supposed to pass as “clothes,” my mother would beat me into the next century.
Reason two: half the people there don’t actually understand what’s going on. In conjunction with reason one, people usually just show up to the games because it’s an easy excuse to get super cute aesthetically-pleasing Instagram pictures. Typically after the games, I can’t go on any social media outlet without seeing a gazillion and one pictures of said people in their outfits that I never asked to see. It almost makes me want to report the post for nudity and porongraphy. NEXT.
Reason three: look, I get that it’s a game and it’s exciting, but there is a very distinct fine line between cheering and being blatantly obnoxious. A vast majority of the time a good number of students in the crowd are trying to show off as much as they can to get as much attention as they can. You’ll be sitting in the crowd with one guy yelling at the cheerleaders, another screaming at the rest of the student section to get excited, another is using an impressive array of expletives, and oop suddenly you’re ducking to avoid the foot of a student who’s surfing the crowd.
Reason four: There’s this unspoken hierarchy of the seating arrangements in the bleachers. The “popular,” people who we should just give the crowns of high school royalty, sit at the front. They typically take up the first few rows and literally everybody in those rows are buddy-buddy friends. Guess what that means: if you’re not their friends/ not cool/ dress-in-a-way-you-would-in-front-of-your-grandma, you’re booted to the back. Either that or it’s a brutal battle to fight for a spot in the decent seats. It’s ridiculous.
Reason five: This may not be the same for every high school out there, but at my school, if you aren’t interested in waiting in the parking lot for twenty-five minutes to get out, you better sprint to your car like it’s the Hunger Games. Fighting for spots, fighting to get out, fighting to maintain sanity- it’s too much for every Friday night game. A night at home with Netflix, a book, and maybe a friend sounds like nirvana after that.
If you’ve made it this far you might be mildly entertained or annoyed, either thinking I’m a blunt realist or an irritating pessimist, but either way please don’t let this prevent/ diverge attendance from football games. That kind of scene may be your thing; the football team and coaches always appreciate the support. If anything, let this be a warning of conduct; be nice and inclusive at games, invite others to sit in your row, and make the student section a place where everyone is welcome again.