Yesterday, me and my wife took off work early and took the 2+ hour drive to the game. Possibly the only game we will make this season. We arrived around 5 and found the Huddle Tailgate with limited confusion. Once we walked up a few of our fellow Huddlers instantly recognized us and called out "Meow!". We took the time to get to know a few people we hadn't met at previous tailgates, enjoyed some games, and enjoyed A LOT of adult beverages. Finally got to put a face to Roaring Riot and he was beyond generous to both me and Mrs. M3OW. Got to know Teeray and his wife (great people if you ask me) and got to catch up with some old Huddle friends.
Around 7:45, we decided it was time to take our stuff back to the car and head in... Took a little longer than expected due to the 3 hours of drinking and lack of food consumed. We finally made it in the stadium and to our seats right before the national anthem.
From kickoff I knew we were in for a bad night. During the first defensive drive, me and the wife were getting loud, standing, slamming seats, and waving those cursed towels. By the 2nd play, this older couple behind us started yelling "Could you please sit down, we can see the game". If you've met me, you know I'm not gifted in the height area of the gene pool. I turn to notice this couple sitting in their seats with blankets wrapped around them as if they were at home watching a movie on their couch. I told them I would move down a little (there was only two other people on our entire row at this point) and she thanked me.
Just minutes later, the INT happens and me and the misses go crazy. Jumping, yelling, screaming, and high fives began. I turn to my right to high five a fan.... No one there. Ok, I'll turn around.... This younger couple behind me was sitting with their arms crossed as if they just had a huge fight. I felt like Tom Brady with no one else to High Five and join in this awesome early celebration... I look to the row in front of me... A bunch of teenagers who were glued to their phone and they all looked about as interested in football as Steve Smith is in coming back to Carolina. I look to my wife and ask "Why is nobody cheering?" She shrugs and we both cheer and try to get this section to get off their butts. In the entire section, maybe 15 people were standing and celebrating.
This goes on for the whole first quarter. At one point the old couple proceeded to yell at two fan sitting # ROWS IN FRONT OF THEM to sit down!!! On defense I continue to cheer, scream, and slam my seat back until suddenly it's no longer making any noise. Confused I turn around to see why my seat has now been muted to find the old lady had thrown her jacket on the arm rest of my seat and the seat next to it. I turn slowly trying to keep my cool and when I finally make eye contact with her she gives me this "What now?" face and looks to her husband and smiles. I smile back and move to the next set of seats and proceed to bang even louder and now right in front of them. I felt her evil stare burning a hole in the back of my Kuechly jersey but I didn't give a damn. I paid for this seat and if I choose not to sit in it and slam it instead.... I WILL!
By the 2 min warning, 30 something guys show up for the seats next to me. Beers in their hands, I'm thinking "Finally! Someone to get loud with!" NOPE! These bros spend the entire end of the half and halftime talking about important business crap going on in their lives and gazing into each others eyes with deep non-football related conversation. At one point, a big play happens and I begin to cheer and yell and turn to the guys (who are now looking at me like I'm insane) and tell them to get up and have some fun! They laugh and go back to their debates about which polo manufacturer makes the best fit.
For an entire half, me and my better half complain about this entire section and how these are the WORST seats we have ever sat in. "WE WILL NEVER BUY SEATS IN SECTION 537 AGAIN!" "Yeah, These people SUCK!" Well, fast forward to the 3rd and they do the whole "Will Section 536 please stand" thing and we both throw our arms up. "Fug. Just 1 section away!!!!" We both turn to our right to see who would win whatever it was they were giving away... (Okay. now remember earlier in the story when I talked about all the alcohol consumed at the tailgate... Good, let's keep that in mind for the next part of this story.)
Look to the section next to us that SHOULD be Section 536... no one is standing? But the section next to them is standing and cheering??? What the hell? Are that many people confused as to what section they are in? Then it hits me like Ray Rice in an elevator.... I turn slowly to look at the numbers on the stadium behind us. And there it is. In BIG BLUE NUMBERS... 5-3-8.... We had been sitting in the right seats, on the right row, of the wrong section the whole time! No one had ever shown up to ask if we were in their seats, no one.
We finally pulled the trigger and left after the last Saints touchdown (don't judge me... I had a 2+ hour drive back home I was NOT looking forward to). The drive home was a quiet one. Leaving us both to pour over our thoughts (and hangovers). We got home and promptly hit the sheets and blacked out... Only to wake up (what seemed like seconds later) to head into work this morning.
After this entire story of our experience at the game, I just wanted to say...
THANK YOU TO EVERYONE AT THE HUDDLE TAILGATE!!!
You all were the HIGHLIGHT of an otherwise crappy night.
Thank you to Jeremy, Roaring Riot, Boo and everyone else that helps put together the best tailgate in the Queen City.
And to all the Huddlers we got to meet and get to know... You are all awesome and hope to see you all again soon.
TL;DR (See above in big blue letters)