I cannot get over how different Saturday's game felt as our Colorado Rapids hosted Sporting Kansas City. It had little to do with the actual match, but everything to do with security upon entry into Dick's Sporting Good's Park (DSGP) and their positioning and actions where we were in the South Stands.
Driving into the game was its own slice of fun. With the numerous soccer tournaments taking place, traffic was more stacked than usual. Fine. The more soccer, the better. But even the lines entering into the game were a bit slower than usual. I'm not sure what brought on the extra security, but it took a full 90 seconds to check my backpack. You might say, "what's the big deal about 90 seconds?" But take your average backpack, and count 90 seconds. Then multiply that by about 200 fans, and you get the idea. Even then, fine.
Then I come to my home away from home, the back row of Section 121. This is my fourth year of sitting there. Why, you ask? Easy access to the snack bar and the restrooms for my kids. Since we're in the back row, my boys usually climb over the back of the seat and just head to the head. For the first time in four years, we were chastised. Even then, fine.
But then I noticed that any move that was made out of line by anyone, the security folks were Johnny-on-the-spot. Children blocking the aisle? "Let's break it up and clear the aisle." Walking fast up the stairs? "Please walk, sir!" Thirty minutes into the game heading to your section? "May I see your tickets, please?"
For those of you new to the BW, you may go to games where what I've described is standard operating procedure. From the perspective of this fourth year season ticket holder, this was way outside the normal procedure. Usually, walking fast, brief aisle conversations by ten-year-old girls, and checking tickets once the game starts is not stringent. It exists, yes. But not like this.
I suppose my question is, what made Saturday night's game so different from the other games? Was it the Tim Howard effect from the last they met? There's no other reason that occurs to me. If what happened on Saturday had been the standard set early and often at DSGP, that’s one thing. Usually, we walk in, the security guards do their job, but are friendly and do all they can to make our time as family-friendly and fun as possible. But Saturday night, it felt as if they were just ready to pounce on the most minor of indiscretion.
Am I against security, law and order? Absolutely not. It just felt ... different. Will this continue? Who knows, and if it does, we'll adjust and all will be (wait for it) fine.
Maybe this was just for Sporting Kansas City, but if not, give yourself extra time to get into Dick’s from now on.
What experiences did you all have? Was I the only one? After four years of being a season ticket holder, I never 'felt' anything like this. Help me out here.