Sports News Without Fear, Favor or Compromise
Sports News Without Fear, Favor or Compromise
Illustration for article titled When Should You Stand At A Sporting Event?
FunbagTime for your weekly edition of the Deadspin Funbag. Got something on your mind? Email the Funbag.

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This Saturday I was at a local college football game with seats down close to the field. Well, the people sitting in the first row thought it would be a good idea to stand most of the time, not just potential big plays/moments, blocking our view. BTW, we were in the grownup section, not the students section. Some people around us got into with them (including the dude standing offering to fight the person complaining). So who’s right in this situation? Yes the person has a right to stand, however, they shouldn’t be a douchebag about it and block other people’s views.


This has been a real bone of contention with fans lately. I’ve gotten emails bitching about fans who always sit, and other emails bitching about fans who always stand. In both cases, people were essentially complaining about outliers in their section who who refuse to obey the laws of sociology and won’t do what the rest of the section is doing. So here are some basic rules about sitting and standing that I pulled out of my ass right now.

1. If it’s a playoff game, you stand.

2. If you’re in a student section, you stand.

3. If it’s the end of a close game, you stand.

4. If someone just dunked/hit a homer/scored a long touchdown, you stand and high five.


5. If the first four instances don’t apply, you should be a fucking sheep and do whatever everyone else in your section is doing.

6. If you want everyone in the section to stand, and you stand up alone in hopes of them following suit, and they DON’T, then you gotta sit back down instead of cursing them out for not having enough spirit.

7. If you’re blocking a kid or an old lady’s view, be sure to turn around and ask, “Am I blocking you?” so that they can politely say “Oh no, it’s fine!” when it’s really not.

8. Don’t hold up a fucking sign all game long.

There. Those are the rules. In every instance, you should have some awareness and consideration for your fellow event-goer, and you should adjust your own behavior so that you don’t come off as an extreme cock. Sometimes standing is warranted. Sometimes you’re stuck in the hip replacement surgery section. Deal with it.



When taking a dump which is more impressive? Size or stench?

Oh, size. For sure. Who’s impressed by a smelly dump? No one. Every dump smells like the arrival of Satan. The only time you should take note of your bowel movement’s stench is when it’s distinctive, like if it smells like vinegar, or Chinese food, or popcorn, or all three. But even then, I’m more horrified at the result than proud of it. I end up trying to retrace my gastronomic steps, to get at the root cause of the terror.


By contrast, it feels great to stand up off the pot and see a fucking DRAGON swimming around in the bowl. I feel like I just built a toolshed with my bare hands. I did that! How did it get so big? Was that REALLY all from my body? How can I make a doody like that EVERY time I go? I must be a large and strong man with a girthy penis to have produced such a large poo. Let’s install a grandstand on either side of the toilet so that people can gasp, awestruck, at what I have created.

I also get inordinately proud if my kids make a big poop. Because they do that! I swear, a child can shit out the entire mass of its own body. It’s amazing. Every new parent is warned about poop, but those warnings rarely hint at the sheer VOLUME of it. If you don’t have kids now, prepare to be astounded when you do. That first exploding diaper is a real head-turner of a moment. How can a child be a fraction of my size but produce the same amount of waste, if not more? SHOW ME THE PHYSICS. Sometimes I’ll look into the bowl and then call for my wife. “Look at what Junior did!”



Please help settle a dispute my wife and I are having. I’ve noticed whenever my wife eats a piece of chocolate, she jumps right to chewing it, swallowing when broken down enough. I consider this unacceptable as she never really savors the flavor of the chocolate. I on the other hand will suck on a piece of chocolate, breaking it apart into a couple smaller bits in my mouth and moving them around between my tongue and palate as they melt. Naturally candy bars are a different story, but she thinks I’m a sociopath for eating it this way. Who is right here, and is there a proper technique we should be following?


I start chewing it right away, because then I can finish the chocolate quicker, which gives me the chance to start eating MORE chocolate, and more after that. I’m all about the next hit. How long are you sucking on that chocolate, anyway? If it’s longer than 30 seconds, you can legally be tried in court as a juvenile. Grownups chew, amigo.

That said, it’s always smart to eat slower. Not only do you get to savor the flavor longer, but eating slower helps satisfy your appetite so that you don’t binge-eat. I have tried, in vain, to eat slower for the sake of my health, but it’s damn near impossible. If there’s a plate of chicken in front of me, I want that chicken in my body NOW. What if nuclear war breaks out before I have a chance to finish it? I don’t want to sit there for 40 minutes, chewing each morsel like I’m eating my last meal before a prison fast. As I chew one bite, I’m already surveying and planning the NEXT bite. Will it be that hunk of dark meat at the end? Will it be that knob of fried skin? There are parts of that chicken I have big plans for.


This is a real problem in my household because I have to model good eating habits for my kids, which means taking my time at meals. My wife is very good at this. She could take 30 minutes—30 endless minutes—to eat a single dinner plate. It’s both admirable and enraging. By the time she’s had one bite, my daughter and I are already done and exhorting her to get moving so that we can move on to dessert. CHOP CHOP, LADY! Meanwhile, the seven-year-old could spend all day sucking on a single chicken nugget. Our timing is fucked up all over the place. Anyway, the friction between fast eaters and slow eaters is real. You and your old lady will never see to eye-to-eye on proper chocolate ingestion.


If Tennessee found some loophole where Peyton Manning had another year of eligibility, does he come back for that last year?


No. Even if he did, he still wouldn’t be able to beat Bama. BURRNNNNNNN!

For real though, even if Manning was eligible pull a Thornton Melon and play one more year, he wouldn’t. I’ve had that dream where I’m back in school and, contrary to nightmares where I miss the test, I’m a grown adult and the other kids marvel at my crazy knowledge-droppin’ and easygoing social skills. Then I wake up and I’m like, “Hey! That would be kinda cool!” before quickly realizing how uncool it would be for some middle-aged asswipe to hang around college at age 40. Everyone would just whisper “pervert” every time I walked around the quad. You can’t go back, and you shouldn’t want to.



I’m starting to get scared of all the nuts who own guns, and what might happen after the election, regardless of the outcome. I know it’s not realistic and many have believed this throughout history, but I feel like some sort of general societal breakdown is imminent. If so, it seems like we might want to have some weapons on hand to defend ourselves from the gun nuts and general chaos. My husband, of course, thinks this is a loopy idea. Intellectually, statistically, I know he is right. But it doesn’t stop me from worrying, or looking into buying a few Glocks and a gun safe to store them in the attic. What do you think?


I’ve spent most of this election season waiting for the other shoe to drop—i.e., something truly, historically, catastrophic happening as a result of all this partisan rancor. But we’ve made it this far without a nuke going off or anyone being assassinated, and I don’t know whether to be comforted by that, or HORRIFIED by the idea that the longer this goes without all the tension being released, the worse the explosion will be: just one big hateful nut exploding all over the place.

My guess is that everyone, in general, talks big. They talk big, and they don’t end up doing anything because doing shit is hard. That’s Trump’s life in a nutshell. So maybe Election Day comes and goes with everyone spewing a lot of bullshit but never acting on it. I know that’s how I roll. Pitchforks are heavy.


Either way, you don’t need a gun. The whole reason we have an insane gun problem in the US is because of gun nuts stocking up to protect themselves from other gun nuts. A gun is just a license to be paranoid. I promise you that if the apocalypse comes and The Infected begin roaming the streets, you’ll be able to find a gun anyway. You’ll get one free with a Hardee’s burger.


So next week I have to have a reconstructive jaw surgery that will require me to have my jaw wired shut for 8 weeks. Aside from personal tastes and all, what SHOULD my first solid food be after my mouth is liberated?


Your doctor will tell you that you should take it easy and get back into solid food slowly by eating soft noodles and coddled eggs and shit. I say FUCK THAT. You should have a bacon cheeseburger: a full one-pound burger dripping with melted sharp cheddar and piled high with crispy bacon and frizzled onions, baby. No lettuce or tomato. Eat it and then writhe in agony for the next 90 minutes as your shrunken stomach howls in agony and your rectum declares civil war on you. It’ll all be worth it, I swear.

I don’t know about you, but any time I have an injury or some other malady, I always try to get back into my normal routine too quickly. Doctors want you to ease back into life, but I don’t have the patience for that. Once out of the operating room, I want to eat two pounds of pit-smoked beef, mow the lawn, and then play an entire game of touch football. LOOK AT HOW VIGOROUS AND USEFUL I AM! Then I have a full relapse. I will never ever learn my lesson.



What’s the most choked on food? Every time I’m eating Chinese or Thai end up with huge mouthful trying to create that elusive perfect bite.


It’s carrots and hot dogs. Parenting books and magazine actually tell you to cut up hot dogs into very small strips if you serve them to a child. This is because a hot dog is the perfect size and shape to get lodged in your windpipe. It’s like a hand slipping into a glove. Hot dogs KILL. It’s the same with carrots, which are just as long and twice as firm. Basically, any penis-shaped food can choke you to death, which is both dangerous and unnerving.

Also, hard foods—especially hard candy—can be dangerous, because A) they’re hard, and B) people tend to eat them with great gusto. Yet another annoying reason why you should eat slow. One time my kid choked on a pretzel in the back of the car and I had to stop the car, open her door, reach into her mouth, and yank the pretzel out. Do I tell her every day that I saved her life? You know I do.


Anecdotally speaking, the food I have choked on the most is steak, because I want to eat the whole steak all at once, and because there comes a point when I get tired of chewing. One day I’ll drop dead with half a ribeye in my trachea, and that will be a fine day.





My wife is pregnant with our first child (a boy) and we’re starting to think about possible names. Am I ever going to get over my fear that, between the time we pick one out and him going off to college, a serial killer, Presidential assassin, or douchebag Pharma CEO will show up with the exact same name? And then it will be all my fault for ruining the kid’s life? I should add that I’d prefer to go with something traditional and not have to resort to a Mhavrych or a Zaiden.


No, you’ll be fine. You can’t worry about shit like that or you’ll go mad. Also, every person imbues their name with their own particular identity, particularly if it’s a very common name. It’s not like you see John Harbaugh and think to yourself, “OMG he has the same first name as John Wayne Gacy!” (although it would be funny if you did). People make their names their own. The only exception to this is Adolf Hitler, and the odds of you naming your child after Hitler 2.0 are miniscule. You could even name your kid Donald right now and there’d be little blowback. Normal people can differentiate between Donald the infant and Donald the insane shithead running for President.


So I was just pooping at work and as I’m sitting there, I can see into my underwear which happen to be white (bad choice) and I see this like grease spot where my butthole would be against if I was wearing underwear. And it’s not like, poop, really... But it’s like, leakage? Like, I’ve shit my pants before, but I didn’t do that today.


It could be sweat, but it could also be a very mild diarrhea skidmark. Since diarrhea is mostly water, it tends to leave a more insidious, yellowish kind of skidmark, as opposed to the normal Hershey squirt. It’s very distressing. You’re having a lovely day, walking along and minding your own business. Then you go into the bathroom and pull your pants down and BOOM! Mulligatawny soup is leaking out of your butt. Do you know how embarrassing it is to realize you’ve been walking around with THAT for hours, maybe even the whole day? Christ. Wash your hands and eat a banana and you should be fine.


Need help on this. Classic school lunch here in Nebraska is chili and cinnamon rolls. I’ve heard from people in Iowa and South Dakota who had the same hot lunch goodness. But if anyone from anywhere else in the US hears of this combo they act like it’s totally crazy. So 1) Is chili and cinnamon roll common 2) your thoughts on it as a food combo?


That’s the most Midwestern sounding shit ever. I emailed Lincoln for clarity on this because I wanted to know if they served the chili ON the cinnamon roll. He replied, “No but it’s customary to dunk the cinnamon roll. It’s a prominent meal at a local burger chain.” Please note the copy on that website, because it’s about as honest as any brand can get. “Hey, this is weird as hell but also pretty good.”

Anyway, I would gladly eat this. It sounds both lethal AND dumb… like the byproduct of two fast food chains that share the same register at a rest stop. But that only makes it more tantalizing. I’d even dunk my cinnamon roll in the chili and then immediately regret it. People like salty and sweet together, so I kinda get it*. But I wouldn’t actively seek out this meal. Eating it would lower my self-esteem by at least four percent.


(*Every time I try chicken and waffles, I end up eating the chicken first and the waffles second. I know you’re supposed to eat them together, but every time I do that, I end up just wanting the chicken plain, without goddamn syrup all over it. It’s too much food for one mouth, man. I’m aware this take means I can never be a southerner and that pleases me.)


If I’m driving a compact car and there’s a compact parking space available, but I instead park in a normal unmarked parking spot, am I a dick?


No, of course not. Those compact car spots are usually marked at the end of the row, because shitheads speeding around in the garage (why do people do this?) will hit a big car if it’s sticking out there. But why risk your little Dodge Neon’s fender if you don’t have to?

By the way, I have parked a midsize car in the compact space, because it fit within the lines. Don’t @ me. It was compact ENOUGH.



As many modern humans do, I use my smartphone on the shitter (holding it well out of potential splashdown range). At my workplace, the T.P. dispenser is on my left, so I need both hands (tear off with my left, wipe with my dominant right), which requires me to put my phone down. Since it’s hard to jam the phone into a crumpled-around-my-ankles pocket, I deposit it temporarily in what I call the “pants basket” formed by the trousers stretched between my lower calves. Am I a monster?


Don’t do that. That’s unsanitary. Place it on top of your thigh. You have a perfectly good, clean thigh to use. Why would you opt for your grease-stained taint basket instead? Have some compassion. I like to rest the phone on my bare thigh (it tickles!), then wipe with my right hand, retrieve the phone with my clean left hand, jam it into my pocket, and then wash my hands accordingly. I’m there’s fecal matter all over my phone anyway, but that’s about the best effort I can give.


So far every military flyover has been timed wrong, should we be concerned about this?


No. It’s hard to time the passing of a jet going 1,875 mph with a song the pilot can’t hear being played 5,000 feet below. When it comes time to accidentally bomb a hospital that LOOKS like a munitions plant, I assure you that timing will firm up considerably.

By the way, what if they staged one of those flyovers and the pilot accidentally hit the FIRE button on the stadium? Does J.J. Watt still have to support that troop? I bet he does. I bet the perpetrator’s identity would somehow get lost in a sea of military paperwork and then he would be awarded a Silver Star.



I’m getting married on October 29 this year in Chicago, the night of Game 4 of the World Series. Should the North Side team make it all the way this year, that game will be hosted here in Chicago. As a lifelong White Sox fan, I’ll admit I’m having less-than-sporting feelings about this. For what it’s worth, my future husband is a Royals fan, but a good share of our dear family and friends are committed to the Cubs. And while I don’t love the idea of our blessed union becoming a de facto World Series viewing or, God help us, victory party, I also don’t want to be remembered as a bitter and joyless bridezilla. My question is, hypothetically, to what extent do we have to humor this once-in-four-lifetimes event to maximize the appearance of good-sportitude while retaining our dignity? TVs on during the reception? Does the DJ need to provide periodic updates? What if it’s a decisive game? We’re open to ideas but draw a hard line at Steve Goodman songs.


That game likely wouldn’t start until 7:00 or 8:00 pm in Chicago, so you should have plenty of time beforehand for the ceremony and the cocktail hour and the toasts and the first dance and all the obligatory reception shit that people feel obligated to watch/listen to before ripping off their ties and getting ass hammered. A good wedding usually starts in the late afternoon so that you hit cocktail hour right around five. That’s three hours of partying before you start to lose people’s attention spans, and by then you’ll be too happy/drunk to care what guests do. I’d put a TV in bar and turn it on around 9:00 pm. It’ll probably still only be the second inning by then, especially the way these playoff games are going (for real, FUCK slow pitchers).

I went to wedding once that was scheduled the same time as the infamous Bush Push game. They had a TV at the bar and I spent most of the reception watching it, making occasional dance floor cameos so that it LOOKED like I wasn’t being antisocial. It totally worked. No one noticed or cared. Any day that Notre Dame loses is a day worth celebrating.



I was out driving on the freeway this past weekend (~70 MPH), 70 degrees out, mostly gorgeous blue skies with a cloud here and there. My windows are down, my arm dangling out. I noticed that probably 80% of the people I saw on the freeway had their windows up. Huh? Seventy degrees out and windows up? Am I in the minority here and if so, how? I’m in Wisconsin, so the type of day I described is limited. This has come up with the boys I go to lunch with at work too. Thoughts?


I get the appeal. It’s nice to lower the window and feel the wind in my hair and pretend I’m straddling a Harley instead of toodling around in a Kia. But after two minutes, it gets old. It’s loud and windy and I can’t hear the radio. It’s like the Big Bad Wolf is trying to blow my face off. I’d rather crack the opposite window or the rear windows and get some indirect air action going on. Plus I get to brag about saving 10 cents on gas by not using the air conditioning. Then it’s still too loud for me and I just roll up all the windows. Earth’s atmosphere is overrated, IMHO.

This is why people have sunroofs, by the way. If you have a sunroof, you can get some fresh air without it blasting you. People gladly pony up an extra $3,000 in options for that.


I dare say this week’s Email of the week is my favorite.


I was walking down the street yesterday and passed a cute girl that I kind of/sort of know. I raised my right hand to wave hello, then suddenly my left also started to rise. Now I’m walking towards this girl with both of my hands in the air while she stares at me. Naturally, I did the only thing I could do in that moment, and flashed her the double finger guns, following her as she passed by, saying nothing. I then looked at my hands - still in finger gun mode - and asked myself, “What did I just do?” Is there any coming back from this? Can I ever look this girl in the eyes again? Clearly I’m very lost.


You poor man. Let’s all buy Jon a stiff drink.

Drew Magary is a Deadspin columnist and columnist for GEN magazine. You can buy Drew's second novel, The Hike, through here.

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