Some of the dynamics are different (in baseball standing is generally terrible, in football standing on defense is a good thing) but many of the complaints could've been written by anyone who's ever been to BoA Stadium.
1) Are you doing the wave?
You should never do the wave when the other team is batting, or when your team is batting, or any other time. Don't do the wave, not only because you might knock over my eight-dollar beer but also because you'll block my view during play, and it's idiotic. Recently, fans on Twitter were rightfully upset about the Nats crowd doing the wave, and posts were sent with the hashtag #STILLLEARNING. Other Twitterers were bragging about the wave circling the stadium "10 times." Be part of the solution.
2) Are you leaving early?
On one hand, I like this because if you are leaving before the last out you are probably also a stander, but it's still wrong. Unless your house is on fire and there is still a chance you can put it out, stay until the end. I was at a 5-5 game on a recent weekend when an entire family got up in the late innings and left. Two of the boys—to their credit—bitched and moaned about it, but the dad said in a low but sadly recognizable tone for dads everywhere: "But your mom wants to leave." That happened. Right in front of me. What a horrible, horrible example he set for his children, who now think it's okay to leave tied baseball games early. The good news is about an inning later the dad and two of the boys—sans mom—came back and sheepishly sat down again. Pyrrhic victory, thy name is that guy.
4) Do you have your two-year-old with you?
You will not have fun. More importantly, I will not have fun if you sit anywhere near me. I watch these families come and go, and it's just a big misery party—arrive in the third inning, leave in the sixth. I know, because I used to do it. Mom and dad have dropped $300 just to claim five chairs that they never sit in. Then they spend at least $20 each to eat and get drinks, and then leave early. Your $400 would be better spent buying a giant screen TV at Walmart, staying home, and standing up whenever you want. Or mom and dad could spend $200 on the world's best babysitter and go to the game and actually enjoy it.
6) Are you from Philadelphia?
I'm not saying the Philly fans are coarse and abrasive and crass, but when thousands of the Jerky Boys descended on D.C. last year, a bunch of them had a burping contest in the row behind me, and the winner was a woman wearing a Chase Utley jersey.
If you answered yes to any of these questions, you probably think I'm the uptight Puritan who is concerned that somewhere someone is having a good time. Well, that is false, because I am a Presbyterian.
They say the hardest thing to do in all of sportsdom is to hit a baseball with a bat, but in Washington sometimes the hardest thing to do is see the feat from the stands. So sit down during play, turn off your phone, tip the beer guys generously, and pay attention to the drama unfolding in front of you on that big green field where all the people are running around. If you do, you'll find that baseball rewards your close attention more than any other sport. And I might not have to take those anger management classes after all.
Truthfully, it will probably get worse before it gets better. The rise of the Cam Newton-led Panthers will see a swarm of new fans - which isn't a bad thing - many of whom have never been to an NFL game. We're probably going to see more jersey-less idiots rocking Kmart Tap Out tshirts instead of team gear, milquetoast moms complaining that their kids can't watch sherrod martin whiff on a tackle, and The Wave will probably get more popular.
Growing pains... such is the price of an upcoming dynasty.