Getting Some Tailgate

The Bills won their first game of the year on Sunday — and fortunately, it was the one I’d picked for our annual jaunt to Ralph Wilson Stadium. The Buffalo faithful, eternal optimists all, were chanting “Eight and Eight!” as they left the game, convinced the team could turn around its season for a .500 finish.

As always, a big part of the fun at these games is the tailgating. This year, I expanded the offerings to include bacon-cheese burgers and pasta salad along with the usual sausage and peppers with baked beans. And that was just breakfast.

Orchard Park is like a small city on game day, a town where everyone is out in the streets and yards cooking, drinking, carousing, and carousing. I thought I’d picked an ideal spot, at the edge of a private lot just down a small hill from the official parking. It turns out we were at eye level with a favorite point for fans too impatient to wait for the port-a-john. I drew a diagram to show you what it was like.

If it was chaos before the game, afterwards things went completely unhinged. In the parking lot, under a steady rain, people were lighting open bonfires right on the pavement, hooting and hollering, generally out of control.

There really are no words to describe the madness in and around the stadium, but there are loads of examples on YouTube:

And here’s a good way to get rid of that turkey oil:

And in this clip, see how security (in the yellow jacket) deals with the drunks:

UPDATE: Just discovered that I came home one chair short; it was unwisely left outside the car during the game.

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9 responses to “Getting Some Tailgate

  1. I shudder to think how many of these idiots got behind the wheel of a car. I think I’ll stick to my Sunday dinners at home and the games on TV.

  2. Go Bills!

  3. We go out for a couple of games each year, usually before it gets too cold out. The private lots always seem a better bet, without so many problems with trash, fires, emty cans and bottles… Plus you can get out WAY faster.

  4. Nice diagram.. you’ve lost weight…

  5. In the diagram, the guy isn’t freaking out about the peeing so much as his hot dogs are getting burned!

  6. They’re really cracking down on the tailgate scene at The Ralph. They tried to shut down one of the best know tailgaters this season:

    http://sports.yahoo.com/nfl/news?slug=ap-bills-tailgatingconcerns

    …and there are rumors that the league is investigating the whole tailgate scene:

    http://www.bickeringbillsfans.com/2010/10/nfl-hires-spies/

  7. Buffalo is a bit of a drive, but you can always get cheap tickets. Don’t wear your Jets jersey, Madeo!

  8. Albany Eye Has It

    Eye,

    I believe I saw the guy leaping over the table out on a date a couple of weeks ago with Liz Benjamin.

    Or maybe it was Kelly Lynch Wyland?

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