We went and it was fun. Up til now, my experiences of american sports have been baseball-based. I love the baseball. I love going to a Dodgers game and seeing the ordinary people who live in LA, not the plastic, orange people or the students who take themselves too seriously (I'm looking at you, UCLA Law. Every single one of you I've encountered is kind of a douche.) Instead, it's the working class, people who do everyday jobs in an everyday manner. The baseball is a friendly, funny crowd who don't take anything too seriously. You drink a beer and eat hot dogs and shout at the umpires. There are always hundreds of children in the crowd, little girls with blue ribbons in their hair and boys who run around with oversized mitts on their hands.
|Dodgers v Rockies, September 2012|
The football was nothing like this. The Rose Bowl, where UCLA play, is 45 minutes (on a good day) away from the campus. You are expected to drive in the afternoon, 'tailgate' (eat BBQ and drink) until the game starts at night. The car park was a golf course. A golf course covered in broken glass and burnt patches by the time we arrived at 7pm. We missed the first touchdown walking from the 18th hole back to the stadium- it was so far away. I was tired by the time we got there. Everyone was WASTED. I don't think I can overstate this enough. There were pools of vomit all around the stadium. Automatically this felt more like home- as any Edinburgh resident can attest to, it's not really Sunday morning unless you're dodging vomit puddles. People screamed and shouted. Middle aged men with battered baseball caps high-fived one another, made mad hand actions and downed more beers. It was brilliant. The Arizona fans shouted and sang and argued with the UCLA fans that surrounded them in some drunken, good natured banter.
|The RoseBowl. Image courtesy of husband's instagram|
Then it was half time and I was cold and tired and not feeling very good. UCLA were winning by miles. We watched the marching band and flag girls and cheerleaders perform their half-time show for a little while then started the half hour hike back to the car. I'd go back, but I'll definitely need a beer or four.