Football Close Up
(Mark Stahl)

Yesterday, for the first time ever, I watched a professional NFL game in-person. I trekked down to Nashville to watch the Raiders take on the Titans at Nissan Stadium. 

Like I've mentioned before, I'm a Raiders fan, thanks to my boyfriend. He's a little more die-hard than I am, which is why I bought him these tickets for his 23rd birthday back in May. This has been a highly anticipated weekend, as it was his first live experience of pro football as well. Not knowing exactly what to expect, I wasn't really prepared. I'll share with you some of the things I experienced.

First off, you can't take your purse in. I didn't realize this until my boyfriend did some investigating, but apparently the only bags you can take in have to be transparent. I can't say I had a see-through bag handy at the time. So, I just shoved my pockets full of whatever I could and in we went.

Secondly, it's hot. You'll get sunburnt. I had some makeup on, and I have longer hair, but I still got a little sun. If I would've had my bag, maybe I would've had the ability to carry in some sunscreen. The boyfriend, on the other hand, is roasted. His face is burnt, his sunglasses line is clearly visible, and the back of his neck is painful to look at. He didn't complain though.

Third, there wasn't much hype. When you're as into the game as my boyfriend and I were, there isn't a whole lot of communication. Really, you're both just sitting there biting your nails. When something good happens, we would jump and hoot and holler, but other than that, it was just intense observing.

Another thing that surprised me was how early people left. Maybe this is because last call for alcohol goes out at the end of the third quarter. We didn't drink, because who has $200 to catch a buzz, am I right? But people started picking up and leaving shortly before the third quarter ended. I was like...PEOPLE, SO MUCH CAN HAPPEN IN A QUARTER, WHAT ARE YOU DOING? Granted, most were Titans fans and I'm sure they were tired of watching their team lose. Fair enough.

Overall, it was a lot of fun. We ate $30 chicken strips and a cheeseburger and got sunburnt, but I'd do it again. Next time I'll be a little more prepared, but I can't complain. Plus, the raiders won 26-16, so that alone was worth our while. Seeing a team you love playing right in front of you is so exciting. I think the boyfriend left feeling pretty giddy as well. So giddy, in fact, that he slept the entire 2.5 hours home.

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