The home is where the heart is
Can a section in a soccer stadium be considered a home? Think about it for second. Really…Think about it. You own a one or a few plastic moulded seats in a stadium that at times can be cold and drafty. You get rained on it seems every other weekend, everything seems overpriced, nothing about it is seemingly comfortable. And to top it off the product you actually pay for isn’t always that great.
That’s not like your real home is it?
No, probably not.
So why do you come back week after week, season after season?
Because beyond all of the above mentioned things that drive most people away, you meet people. People you might actually like enough to watch a match with. Then you meet more people, and they’re like minded too. Then you start talking the game, what did you see? Can you believe that play? Why is that guy playing…again? Is the ref truly born out of wedlock? Then one day you’re singing because some guy is leading the way. You’ve probably never sang like this outside of your buddy’s wedding or that time in the club/pub when (Fill in blank) did (Fill in the blank).
Now it’s a week night, and you’re on your knees tracing a line on fabric to help create a piece of art that will be displayed at the next game. You’ve gotten to know all of these people around you who in any other walk of life you’d never speak to, and they know you. You’ve gone beyond small football talk and are talking about your job, and your upcoming vacation and that time in (Fill in the blank).
The season is now almost done and you’ve now gone from the first time in an uncomfortable moulded plastic chair, to standing every game for the entire game, singing you lungs out, watching a game in the rain, without leaving your seat, making friends you now interact with outside of the stadium, the team you support is actually getting better! And most of all feeling like that chair and the section you’re in is now a home away from home.
To me that is how a section in a stadium becomes a home and how the people around you become an eclectic, odd but fun mish mash of a family. You support a common cause, both the team on the pitch and the people around you. And no matter if you’re in a section where you are chanting as royalty or an original, being massive in a red patch, giving you beating heart as an Inebees or bouncing in a U shaped Sector, we are all one messed up family.
If you’re new to this… welcome to the ride. If you’re vet…welcome home.