There is not much that needs to be said about this man. I was at a company lunch barbeque when we stumbled across him, in line waiting for a burger. He clearly does not work and had no place at the company function. But who was going to tell him otherwise? Not with that shirt! Coincidentally this is the same courtyard where I found the original courtyard fan of the game. Maybe this is the new Blue Jays paradise.
And for those wondering – yes, it appears as if his shirt is homemade. Looks like Blue Jays is written in blue marker. A super fan AND a fashion designer? AMAZING!
Due to my incredible golfing skills, I was unable to attend the Blue Jays / Cardinals game at the dome last night. By winning a bet on the links, I was reaping my rewards at the Jack Astors bar at Yonge and Dundas – dinner and multiple pitchers of beer. While it is always disappointing to miss a Jays game in person, it looked like last night was a good one to miss, as Toronto was thumped by the powerful Cards 9-4.
However, more 500 Level Fan scouts were in attendance, and came back with a fantastic report for a fan of the game from last night. Ladies and Gentleman, I am proud to present the FLF of the game from June 22 – Chuck Norris.
Here is the account from my witty, top notch, and drunk upper deck scouts:
The game began and we instantly noticed this man who looked like Chuck Norris. If he was just a regular fan, we would not be having this conversation. Rather, he was at the Dome for reasons other than our beloved Blue Jays. Namely, beer drinking, MILF hunting, teen courting, pop corn eating and more booze drinking (and subsequent puking).
The night began when we noticed this worn looking man complete with grey skin, an oversized/wrinkled nose (thanks to decades of booze abuse), and frizzy hair in need of conditioning. That said, he was full of energy and looked to be a fun loving guy. He looked like Chuck Norris. apache web server
Next, we could not help but notice that he drank a lot. He always had a beer in his hand and was always looking to see where his next beer could be found. In fact, at one point he made his way down the tunnel to get a new beer. However to our surprise he came back empty handed for the first time all game. This is when we saw him borrow money from his ‘loved one’for the beer and then made his way back down the tunnel. This time he didn’t come back empty handed. He also drank his beers at a rapid pace, taking huge gulps and finishing off big draft beers with ease.
Chuck was also a man who loves woman. Not only was he romancing his wife (the MILF-ish battle axe in the pink outfit), but he was attempting to romance of group of teens two rows above him. With the confidence level of the real Chuck Norris, he engaged the teens in superficial discussions all evening.
Next came the munchies. Chuck was hungry and somewhat exhausted with the amount of alcohol he consumed, and as a result needed a salty snack to hold over his appetite. What better snack than a handful of popcorn? We think he was missing a few teeth, so his consumption style was awry. My theory is that he let the popcorn soak in his saliva and then simply swallowed them.
Now for the disturbing part. Chuck drank too much, and it was apparent two-fold. First, he keeled over during the 7th inning stretch and looked to have puked on his seat. He was tired, lethargic, and severely booze-abused at this point.
Secondly, after his apparent vomit, Chuck went to the boys room to freshen up. He came back in a new shirt but not just any new shirt. Chuck changed from his ragged Black t-shirt to a full button up lime green collared shirt. We figured that Chuck had remnants of vomit on his shirt and thus needed a change. We can also assume he made the change to enhance his appearance as he began to make more frequent moves on the teenagers two rows up.
All in all Chuck was a joy to watch, analyze and observe. Now only if the Jays gave us the same reasons to watch.
Thanks guys, and congratulations Chuck Norris! link checker .
Whether it was the security fences and hundreds upon hundreds of police officers, or the fact that the boring Giants were in town, the game on Friday was lacking its normal degree of lunatic upper deck fans. Most of the crowd 18,000+ were fans that were happy to be there and glad to follow the game. While something like that is good for the team, it is awful for Five Hundred Level Fan.
That said, there were a few candidates for FLF of the game, including:
– Original Raptor: a 20-something dude wearing an original purple Toronto Raptors jersey with Marcus Camby on the back
– The Young Man Lover: a 50-something man who made sure he sat within 15 feet of a group of shirtless boys. Disturbing.
– The Underage Drinkers: similar to the fan of the game from June 1st, only a large group of them.
But the winner for this night, based purely on the mix of his volume, passion for the game, level of intoxication, and most importantly his jersey, goes to Replica Ed Sprague.
He was noticeable as soon as we arrived, in a classic Ed Sprague jersey, half un-buttoned with a black tank top underneath. In fact, it could very well have been the ONLY Ed Sprague jersey I have ever seen. Sprague was extremely animated, moving between three or four different rows, up and down, all game long. He was very loud, cheering hugely for every good play by a Jay, defense and offense.
To be honest, he didn’t really do anything memorable. No ejections. No vomits. No heckling. No spitting, or swearing, or fighting, or dancing. But he did have an aura about him, something that made him stand out. Part of me believed he actually might have been Sprague, if not for the fact that he definitely wasn’t with former synchronized swimmer Kristen Babb-Sprague. His date was ugly.
All in all, if this is what we have in store for the Cardinals series – fans who stay relatively composed – it is going to be a slow week at the dome. It might end up being a week where we actually focus on the game instead of the fans. That is not always a bad thing.
Despite the Jays blowing a 2-0 lead in the 8th inning and ruining a Brandon Morrow gem, and despite the fact that the dome was closed even though the sun was shining and it was over 20 degrees in Toronto, it was a great day at the ballgame. Whenever the Yankees are in town there is always a big boost in attendance and this weekend was no exception. Over 100,000 fans came out for the series, including 33,622 for the Sunday finale.
For the Jays the spike in attendance is good news, but for me it’s great news. The greater the number of people in the 500 Level, the greater the chance of finding some classic fans.
And there were classic fans aplenty yesterday afternoon, including:
– Four Yankees fans who found great joy in standing up and pointing to their jerseys like arrogant, cocky morons.
– A group of about 25 drunk women directly behind us who found great joy in standing up and heckling the Yankee fans by yelling things like “Go back to Buffalo,” or “You’re fat and ugly,” or “Sit the f#$% down!”
– A woman referred to as the “Yankee Whale”, who stayed silent until the Yankees took the lead in the 8th, then proceeded to give a thumbs up to everybody around her, with enormous amounts of back, underarm, and belly blubber rippling. And she had no teeth.
But there was one fan who was far more entertaining than the rest. Wearing a pair of jeans and a Jays cap, with his jersey draped over his arm, he wandered up and down the aisle high-fiving everybody in sight. He yelled – a lot and extremely loud. And he was drunk. Blind drunk. Speech impeding, vision blurring, balance impacting drunk. Ladies and gentlemen, the 500 Level Fan of the Game goes to the Shirtless High-Fiver.
Upon arrival we sat in our actual assigned seats – section 535 row 2. However, two innings was enough to show that we needed to move, so up we went…..way up to the 23rd row. It was there that we met the fan of the game.
He was shirtless and he was absolutely killed by the 3rd inning. He was trying to drum up some fan support by walking up and down the aisle and high-fiving/talking to random people. But the response he got back was minimal, likely because nobody could understand what he was saying. “Cccommmnme oahhon, eveyyrrryoannne!! Boobooobbbbooo Yankseesse, go Jahajays.” (For my translation of some of his comments please refer to the Quotes from the game.)
He hated Yankee fans, losing his composure mutliple times when they would make noise. When a poor girl wearing a Yankee’s cap was trying to read a Blue Jays schedule, he ripped it out of her hands, slurring “that’s what you get Yankee” in a drunken-version of English.
What made this guy even more interesting was the fact that starting in the fourth inning he had between one and three security personnel watching him AT ALL TIMES!!! Every step, every shout, every shirt twirl was instantly greeted with six eyes glaring sharply at him.
Finally in the 7th inning they pounced. Three members of the high powered Rogers Centre security team, clad in fluorescent green shirts, marched up to the High-Fiver and demanded he leave with them immediately. At his feet were about four empty cans of Moosehead, which proved how big of an idiot he actually was. He somehow managed to get them into the game. Good start. He somehow managed to drink four tall-boys without getting caught. Great. But then he leaves the empty cans on the ground? Why not put them back in the bag you brought in? What a fool.
Anyways, this is where the game got even more exciting. He refused to leave. He refused to look at security. He refused to aknowledge what they said, or the fact that they even existed. A classic move. I don’t know what was better – the fact that he did that, or the fact that the security people had no idea what to do about it. Unfortunately for the High-Fiver, the police officer that came up afterwards wasn’t as stupid or clueless.
So just like that he was gone, lead down the stairs and into the concourse by four men. He left to the cheers of many, Yankee and Blue Jay fans alike.
Sadly I was unable to attend last night’s game at the Rogers Centre between the Jays and Rays. I guess it actually turned out to be a blessing, because I was sitting on my couch when Kevin Gregg imploded in the ninth, watching it on TV instead of in the 500 Level. That meant I had instant and arm’s length access to beer, wine, scotch, rye, vodka, and tequila, all of which helped me to forget the disaster I had just seen.
But luckily for me, a few 500 Level Fan scouts were out in the upper deck last night. Showing what a true company man I am, the scouts paid their own way in, and will continue to receive no compensation. But great job gentlemen!
And now, in their own words, I present their scouting report. Tbe first ever scouted 500 Level Fan of the Game – The (very) Underage Drinker!
“As promised, here is the 15 year old beer saving drunkard.
In the third inning we flagged down the beer man for a few tall boys. As he stood there preparing our frosty delights, suddenly the clearly underage kid in front of us confidently requested not one but TWO Keith’s.
It was a classic moment as he looked no more than 15 and the kid next to him looked 11 at most. Equally classic was the utter look of confusion or general befuddlement on the face of the beer man. He clearly could not figure out if he was hearing things or whether he was being made the butt of some punk kid’s joke.
So, the beer man carried on and provided two beers to the cougars a few rows up. At that time, the kid called out again for his beers at which point the beer man had no choice but to comply.
He took the kids ID and astonishingly rewarded him with two beers, one for him and one for the girl next to him (to this point we hadn’t noticed the girl as we were too in shock that the ID was good).
Clearly satisfied the kid began to enjoy his beer…but I noticed in the top of the 8th that he still hadn’t finished it. He was stretching out the last few sips.
Overall, the 15 year old beer saving drunkard was confusing, impressive, and lame all at the same time. An enigma such as this could only be found in the skyward confines of the 500 level.”
An incredible sight at the Roger’s Centre last night. It had nothing to do with Toronto’s 3-2 win over the first place Rays. It had nothing to do with the disappointing drop in attendance, down to 11.335 despite two 30-win teams going at it.
It had everything to do with the return of two 500 level legends:
On the left is WWE legend and Hall-of-Famer Bobby Backlund. On the right is none other than children’s animated TV star Pingu the Penguin. To fully understand what this means, please join me on a flashback, a trip down memory road.
2002 – My best friend and I begin regularly attending Jays games in the 500 level. As fresh graduates of York University and still unemployed, the summer of ’02 becomes a summer of freedom. Sitting in the upper deck and enjoying Hinske, Wells, and Halladay, we notice two striking men a few rows ahead of us in section 524A. The man on the aisle bears a striking resemblance to Bobby Backlund. The man in seat 2 looks an awful lot like a penguin. We continued to see them throughout the summer, each time noticing how the penguin-man, now referred to as Pingu, was silent, and Bobby was chirpy. He also had tape holding his glasses together.
2004 – After a summer spent out of Toronto, we both return to the city. Upon re-acclimatizing ourselves to the 500 Level, we are both shocked and excited to see that Pingu and Bobby are still there, still sitting in section 524A.
2005 – Bobby and Pingu remain fixtures in the upper deck, though their behaviour is becoming increasingly erratic. Bobby continually tries to take photos of children with their parents, and tries game-in and game-out to bet other fans bottles of diet cokes that an opposing player will hit a home run. Pingu is still quiet.
2006 – Bobby and Pingu vanish.
Fast forward to last night. We are both back to see the battle of the Jays and Rays, keeping one eye on the game and one eye on the fans. Section 525 proved fruitless. Just a bunch of young girls with their boyfriends, and a few rows of older fans. Nothing crazy. Section 522 also proves uneventful. Though the Jays, and Morrow especially, are dominating on the field, the upper deck is strangely quiet.
At this point I turn to my friend: “I wish Bobby and Pingu were still around. I wonder what happened to them?”
His reply? “They’re probably dead.”
However, upon moving into section 519, the unthinkable:
Yes! The legends have returned!
While the rest of the ball game was exciting on the field, it did little to match the excitement felt in the 500 Level. The behaviour of the pair was even more erratic than in years past. Bobby still had the taped glasses, and still had the faded white t-shirt, but he had found new ways to annoy those around him. In the 4th inning he started rubbing the head of the fan in front of him. For every at-bat by Overbay he would yell “You are a moron!”, and then yelled “Overpaid!” Unfortunately for us around him, he continued to yell “Overpaid” for 25 minutes after Lyle’s at-bat.
In the 5th inning Pingu fell asleep. Despite Bobby’s best efforts to wake him (a constant barrage of nonsensical chatter, and the occasional slap to the head), he remained out for several batters. He was quieter than ever until the 8th, when he unleashed a profanity filled tirade at Lyle Overbay.
It was incredible. We were a few years older, but despite Pingu’s increased girth and rounder belly, they looked the same. It was like we entered a time warp and it was 2002 all over again.
I know what you’re thinking. How can I give away a fan of the game award when the team isn’t even in Toronto?
The Blue Jays kicked off an eight-game west coast road trip last night with a nail-biting 3-2 win over the Mariners at Safeco Field. I watched the game from the comfort of my couch, sipping a scotch, and listening to the sweet sound of Buck Martinez botching the pronunciation of Encarnacion. But though the comfort level was way up, my couch is approximately 3,300 KM from Seattle, making a fan of the game selection impossible.
Until, that is, I took a coffee break this morning at work. Walking across the courtyard of the TD Centre, I found a man asleep on a bench, clad in a beautiful, old-school Blue Jays jacket. Seeing jackets like this are rare. Seeing jackets like this on a man fast asleep at 11:30 AM outdoors in a public place on a Thursday are even rarer. So ladies and gentleman, let me present the first ever Courtyard Fan of the Game – the Sleeper!
I know that the Sleeper is probably homeless, and it might seem cruel to talk about him. But 500 Level Fan is in the business of spreading joy to people, and finding the best in all situations.
So picture for a second a possible scenario from last night:
The Sleeper is awake, and following his Jays pitch by pitch. He unleashes a loud cheer for the Alex Gonzalez RBI single and the John Buck HBP RBI. He grimaces and can barely watch when Franklin Gutierrez singles off of Kevin Gregg, putting two men on in the bottom of the 9th. But then he goes wild with the final out, cheering, and high-fiving people around him. He celebrates by going out and getting blind drunk, forgetting where he is, losing his friends, wandering the city aimlessly, finding a nice, hard, marble bench, then laying down, passing out, and being oblivious to everything around him. That is a hard-core fan.
The Jays enjoyed the largest crowd of the season since opening day on Sunday, but despite the 25,000+ in attendance, the candidates for FLF of the game were lacking. I don’t know if it was the open roof, the beautiful sunny day, the fact that it was a Sunday, or that the Jays are simply playing too well to attract hecklers, but the crazy fan level was at a low.
That said, there was one fan in particular who caught the eye of my friends and I. It was very hot in the upper deck, with virtually no protection from the sun available anywhere. But in the top of the 4th inning, here came a fan into section 511 wearing heavy red corduroy pants, thick black socks, dress shoes, a dress shirt, and a white blazer. He didn’t say much but he stared at us a lot. Since it was a Sunday, we assumed he had come straight from church to the game, so ladies and gentleman, the 500 Level Fan of the Game for May 16th goes to the Churchgoer!
The Churchgoer was hot. That was obivious both because he was dressed for an autumn day and it was blazing hot, and because he was soaked. Sweat was pouring down the side of his face. It was quite gross actually.
Even funnier was that as the game went on, his outfit became more scandalous. By the 6th the blazer was off and the sleeves rolled up. By the 7th, the cords were rolled up to his ankles and the socks pulled down. By the 8th the cords were up at knee level, exposing an entire ankle and a full calf muscle. His fellow church goers would have been outraged!
A wild game at the Rogers Centre last night. The Jays came back from 3-0 and 9-3 deficits to win 16-10 in a crazy slugfest. Hill, Lind, Snider, Wells, and Overbay all went deep, sending the attendance of 16,020 into a frenzy. Well, most of the crowd of 16,020 into a frenzy. One man in section 519, row 2 was as composed as they get. Nothing in the game seemed to faze him. In fact, he didn’t utter a single word the entire game, no boos, no cheers, no applause. Nothing. But because of his appearance and his actions, for the first time a silent fan will win FLF of the game. Ladies and gentleman, the 500 Level Fan of the Game for Friday May 14th – the Moustache Masturbator!
Right away, at first glance, it was obvious that this was a MAN. Not just a man, but a MAN, an all-caps MAN. I had to pass by him on the way to my seat, and as he stood to let me through (in pure silence of course), his enormously thick, plush, and well manicured moustache stood out, looking me right in the eye. It was all I could do to not flinch and fall from the balcony of the 500’s. I have seen moustaches before. Hell, I’ve even grown moustaches before. But this, this was something special.
It wasn’t until the 4th inning that we noticed the rest of his attire. He was clad in a Canadian Tuxedo, which was unfortunately covered by a heavy winter coat. But if you were able to stay focused, glimpses of the Tuxedo were there. For those of you who don’t know what a Canadian Tuxedo is, let me explain. It is an outfit of full denim, from the shirt to the pants. If the denim is the same wash, fade, and colour, it adds to the mystique. The Moustache Masturbator wore medium blue jeans with a medium blue denim button up, fully tucked. Again, what a MAN!
In addition to his outfit, the Moustache Masturbator was listening to the game on headphones, on what appeared to be one of the first generation Discman’s, one equipped with an AM/FM tuner. So intent was he that nothing interfere with the radio, that he had duct taped the entire CD portion of the Discman, lest it accidentally open and he miss a Jerry Howarth description of a pop out.
But his true greatness was not in his attire, his accessories, or his moustache. His true greatness was the way he played with his moustache. Every time one of us took a look to our left he had his fingers in his ‘stache. He was grooming it, picking it, stroking it, twisting it, rubbing it, and loving it. I’m sure at one point he licked it and sucked on it. I bet he would have made love to it if he could have. And it wasn’t just once or twice during the game. It was once or twice every three minutes. For that kind of performance there was really only one choice for the fan of the game award. Congratulations Moustache Masturbator!
Honourable Mention goes to the extremely angry man beside the masturbator who also spoke nary a word, and surprised all around him by pulling out a snack in the 4th inning. But not chips, popcorn, peanuts, or a sandwich. No, he pulled from his pocket an entire chicken breast wrapped in cellophane, and proceeded to wolf it down, with an occassional lick. Gross.
They say that a full moon brings out the crazy in some people, and it appears that an open Rogers Centre roof might have the same effect. On a beautiful night in Toronto, the 500 level was full of characters making it very difficult to choose a fan of the game. And you know when one fan gets so blind drunk that he passes out in the 6th inning, and another decides to shout three profanity-laced heckles from out of nowhere (see They Said It), it will take a very special person to knock them off. Ladies and Gentlemen, the 500 Level Fan of the Game for Thursday April 29th against Oakland – the Hitting Coach. Continue reading 500 Level Fan of the Game – April 29th, 2010→