Sometimes the only alternative for me is isolation from the rest of the normal fans. Courtesy

He stood at the top of the stands in all of his glory – a tight fitting shirt to show off his girth, short shorts because if they were longer they would make him look like a troll. What remained of his hair was unkempt and there was no other way to describe his general appearance except for ‘disheveled’.

In his hand he held his drink. His cheap $5 sunglasses from the local convenience store concealed his blood shot eyes, a result of too much sun and wind, allergies and lack of sleep.

Directly in front and below him, laid out like a priceless emerald gem, was a football field. Two opposing teams cautiously made eye contact as they prepared for their upcoming match. Among the participants were the man’s sons, ducking behind their teammates to avoid the man’s stares and his eventual outbursts.

Outbursts. It’s what he does best. The rest of the crowd cheers; he does something else – something that embarrasses his family and his kids on the team. He doesn’t want to, but he can’t help it. He taunts the refs. He taunts mascots. He yells at opposing fans. He does everything that a normal fan would never dare do, except of course, exposing himself. He hasn’t gone that far…yet.

Sound familiar? It does to me because I’m THAT guy. For the most part when I taunt and jeer I like to think that I’m being clever but honestly, I’m just being a jerk. Despite all of my attempts to keep my mouth in check, the minute my tongue can pry my teeth and lips open I know before the first words start to trickle out that what I’m about to say is going to make someone laugh, but later on it will guarantee the wrath from Super Mom and her merry band of mini-me’s.

I’ve quickly earned a reputation that I’m trying to escape. To help you avoid the same fate at every one of your child’s games, try using the following methods:

  1. Sit in the parking lot — If you can’t control your passion, temper, tongue or all of the above you may want to find a seat that is far from the action, but close enough that you can still feel like someone cares about what you’re spouting off about. Banish yourself and save everyone else the headache and the cops the hassle of pulling out their handcuffs.
  2. Run for public office — Most politicians learn a very important skill: How to manage your mouth. Politicians who can’t master this skill generally end up like Rod Blagojevich or John Edwards. In the stands you can just glad-hand people, say something positive like, “Vote for Pedro” and then don’t speak unless spoken to. Simple.
  3. Wear a bag on your head — If you just can’t resist shooting your mouth than your best option is a large paper sack over your head. It will conceal your identity (to save your sons’ honor) and you can walk around town with your head held high every other day of the week because no one can associate you with the jerk in the stands.

Tonight as I don my purple shirt (that’s our school color and it makes me feel sexy) and head off to another high school football game where my family will reserve a seat for me in the parking lot, I’ll be waving to my fellow fans and shouting “Vote for Pedro” through my brown paper sack mask.