Welcome back Foot'o'files and boy did you pick a good week to tune in. The Boys in Black were all set to duke it out with the Seattle Sounders for the second round, the first round consisting of them beating us for the US Open Cup in our own beloved RFK less than two weeks ago. You could say that engines were running a little hot at the thought of getting our chance to show them and their Colombian roasts and rain coats, their rainy season and Mad Season, what real champions look like. Yours truly had a pre-party of sorts to attend earlier that day (Happy Birthday Jackson!) and only made it to the tailgate with about an hour and a half to go before kickoff in the company of the Head of Security and his lady and the magnanimous Man from Mrrrrrrrrrrr. It was a beautiful sight to roll into legendary Lot 8 and have the BlackFoot Banner be one of the first things we saw. We made a bee line right for it, parked and commenced to partying. We found the Colonel, Chef, the good Doctor and Timetable already in full swing. Re-reading that last sentence makes me think we need to work on our nick names, it sounds like the cast of Clue held their dinner party at RFK. Be that as it may, the tailgate was on. You might think that showing up as late as we did that there could not possibly be too much to write about, read on you Foot faithful.
First things first: once again the fame of the Foot is spreading. We continue to throw great tailgates (I feel I can say that since no one was at the Cup Final tailgate, which you will notice I didn't even bother to write about), we continue to be one of the coolest, most exciting (or at least most recent) upstart fan clubs the Nations Capital has ever seen, and we continue to get noticed by the black clad masses who gather every game to root on the Black and Red. This weeks special guest: Hooligan Vader (yes, I know that is not his real name, but I am not sure how favorable I will make him look in this post so, just in case he googles his own name . . .). You might say that he used the force to feel, or smell, that our tailgate involved something that might help him trust his feelings and refute the Dark Side, or rather join it. He made his way over faster than Han Solo on the Kessel spice run. The Chef was only too happy to oblige and we soon had a new fan. As the Colonel and I did our best to spread the word of the Foot to this independent United fan we were graced with his thoughts and opinions. It was kind of like listening to Yoda, except he didn't talk backwards. Actually, I think it would have been more exciting if he had walked backwards, away from the tailgate. Anyway it added some flavor to the festivities as more and more fringe Footers joined the party. We soon had a full fledged party on our hands that made the Cantina in Mos Eisley look like the bogs of the Degobah System.
Now, there was one more thing that happened that is of note, and I have gone back and forth with myself, sought the advice of others and really wrestled with my conscience; and this is how I have chosen to make fun of the fight that broke out. Yes, you read that right, a fight broke out. Yes, it was between fellow Footers. The Fray at RFK went down like this: it seems that the Colonel, the Chef and the good Doctor had been engaging in some good old fashion physical jibing. It also would appear that our old friend alcohol was involved as well, isn't it always? Suffice it to say that the two above mentioned activities got out of hand, tempers flared and before we knew it we had a full scale tussle on our hands. The Doctor and Chef got things underway but it was not too long before the Colonel heeded the call to battle. A quick note here: this is the one and only time I have ever seen the BlackFoot Brothers take the same side in any disagreement, I mean literally. It was like they were Siamese instead of Italian. It almost warmed the heart, almost. As the bystanders, both shocked and chagrined, stood slack jawed yours truly and a few others jumped in to try and break things up. It seemed like as soon as you pulled someone off somebody else you had to start all over again. Thanks, by the way boys, for picking the huge muddy spot next to the tailgate and leaving what grass is out there untouched. Real cool. Eventually our impromptu pugilistic display drew the attention, and ire, of our fellow tailgaters and they made their way over to lend a hand. Even Hooligan Vader popped by, possibly looking for something else. The combatants were separated, spoken to, and soon cooler heads prevailed. As the fighters went to their separate corners the Foot went about taking down the tailgate, treating the wounds and mending the fences. Luckily, no permanent damage was done to either bones or bonds, and while the reconciliation did not happen immediately it did happen before halftime. Now, what is my take on this whole scenario, you may ask? I will put it to you like this: I have never seen grown men act sillier outside of a Monty Python movie. We are the Knights that say "Hey, wanna fight?" These things happen and if you are lucky, and we were, you get some great comedic material out of it and nothing else. The Footers waited the appropriate 30 minutes before the jokes broke loose. Boys will be boys. I am just glad the majority of our ladies were not there (way to hang tough Tonya!) to witness the shenanigans. That, I feel, would have been a real disaster. The Black and Blue Foot came out just that, a little bruised but better off. If anything, the BlackFoot established themselves as a fan club not to be trifled with, our street cred is ridonkulous! Besides that, the real tragedy happened when we finally walked into the stadium . . .
Greetings from the Grill: KFC in a bucket. Wow, how the mighty have fallen. I enjoyed the can of whup ass that was opened more but still went home hungry.
So off we staggered into the stadium in twos and threes, the real reconciliation was not to happen for another 30 minutes, and took our spots in the stands. It seems it was just not meant to be our day. The Boys in Black did their best but seemed chained to the same fate that had befallen them not two weeks ago. We lost, 2-1. It was a day of firsts: the very first (and hopefully last) BlackFoot Brawl and United loses their first home league game of the season. The only thing we needed more than those three points was peace. At the very least there was a sweet reunion of good friends right there in section 231, I think I cried, but then again I was laughing pretty hard.
Line of the day: "Hey guys, stop fighting!" Credit goes to everyone except the Colonel, Chef and the Doctor for that little gem. A close second, I thought I heard someone say "Punch him in the diabetes!" but in the heat of the moment I can't be sure.
Well, I won't bore you with the details of how all the Fighting Footers went home and played video games and ate a lot of pizza and a large cache of chocolate lava cake. Let it be known, never a dull moment when you are hanging out with the BlackFoot. I am glad to report that all is well that ended well. A quick note for future tailgates: no more chairs! Well done to the BlackFoot for letting bygones be bygones, saying good night to the fist fights and paving the way for future fun. And, incidentally, I hope the boys don't take offense to anything they read (or more likely sound out slowly) in this blog, not only because I have seen them in action but because it is all in good fun. Seriously, don't beat me up.
Farewell Footers and if you don't want to miss exciting action on and off the pitch get your asses out to some games. I mean really! As always, can't wait to tailgate!
Footnote: nicknames have been used to protect the idiotic.