THE HIGH COST OF BEING THERE

I’d like to go to a football game at Met Life Stadium, but unfortunately, the ticket prices for Giants games are giant-sized. I can understand if you build a $1.6 billion stadium and have a team salary cap of around $190 million, it can be quite worrisome, but we fans have our own mortgages and some of our salaries, although not officially capped, are quite stagnant and not protected by contracts even if we get on the injured list.

Back in 1926 sports enthusiast Tim Mara bought the Giants franchise for $500. Some fans now pay that much or more to sit up front at a single game. From what I can decipher on ticket-sellers’ websites, if you want a season ticket for Giants home games you’ll first have to buy a Personal Seat License which can cost thousands. That makes you eligible to pay for the actual season seat which can cost more thousands for up-front-sitters.

Watching a game on TV just isn’t the same. Sitting on a comfortable couch with an unobstructed view through multiple cameras with close ups and slo mo replays and with expert explanations of every play isn’t nearly as enjoyable as being there, squeezed between two raucous fellow fans and suffering through the same cold rain or sleet as our beloved team. Besides, even though you’re one of 82,500 fans there’s an outside chance a player or coach will hear your shouted instructions or warnings and will take heed. At home, my wife has no idea why I’m yelling “SCREEN PLAY!” or “THEY’RE GOING TO BLITZ!”

I thought it would be good if I could get on the team. I’d get in free and make a few dollars besides. So I contacted a Giants scout and told him of my extensive gridiron experience playing left tackle on my high school team and how I was a third string Hudson County All Star in 1947. The scout said I sounded like a hot prospect but I should have called sooner. “How much sooner?” I asked and he replied “1948.”

I protested that I was still quite spry and many’s the time I’d seen a Giants wide receiver drop a pass and I’d shouted quite truthfully, “I would have caught that!”

“I don’t doubt you can still catch an occasional pass,” the scout said, “but you must realize one second later you’d be hit by an angry 250-pound corner back and you’d probably cough up the ball as well as your lunch and your dentures.”

“Okay, forget about putting me on the team. I guess you still have water boys. Any openings?”

“Water boys? Are you kidding? These players are millionaires. We have Perrier boys now although some linemen prefer an iced honeydew mint tea. If you’d like to try out for libations carrier, have your agent contact our front office.”

“My agent?”

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