Although we had been planning to go to the Montana game for weeks, somehow my friends and I had forgotten to get tickets until Friday afternoon, an hour before we were supposed to leave for Montana.
We frantically searched the campus and even called the University of Montana in search of last minute tickets, only to come up empty-handed. So we made the decision to drive to Missoula anyway, and hopefully find tickets once we got there.
Four hours and lots of backseat-driving later, we finally arrived, ready to party. We stayed with some friends of friends that lived in Missoula and got the weekend off to a drunken-Montana start.
We had been planning to go out to breakfast early that morning and then tailgate for a few hours before the game, but since we had been up so late partying the night before we barely had enough time to stop for fast-food, look for a parking spot, drink a few shots of tequila and frantically scalp some tickets.
I drove up with two of my friends; one of us was able to get a ticket from a U of M student. My other friend and I had to run around the tail-gating area with two fingers up, hoping someone had some extra tickets.
Some people misunderstood why we were holding our hands up and thought we meant “peace” or “victory,” but eventually someone understood and sold us tickets, one for $20 and another for $10 from another person.
Once we got in the game, the yelling for Eastern from the Montana side began. The Montana fans, dressed head-to-toe in maroon and silver, were yelling so loudly, that they probably couldn’t hear me anyway (we need to take a cue from them, people, by actually dressing in our colors and actually cheering our team on).
However, as Eastern began to win, they began to quell their yelling, slowly, but surely. So I continued to yell for Eastern at the top of lungs, and wouldn’t quit, even when my Eastern friend (traitor!) said that I should stop because some people might have been getting mad.
Stop??? Weren’t we there to support Eastern?
At one point, I heard some Montana fans yelling about the perverted things that Eastern was apparently doing to each other’s genitals. I turned around and said, “Are you talking s*** about Eastern?” And then I told them what the Grizzlies were doing to themselves and what they liked to do in their free-time. Take that.
Halftime could not have been more fun. Seriously, Easterners, we need to learn how to tail-gate like they do in Montana. Trucks, buses and vans filled with people drinking beer lined the street. There were Coors Light trucks there for crying out loud!
Lining the parking lot were booths filled with people representing their companies, drinking beer and handing out hot dogs to anyone who would ask for one. People were so friendly that they even served beer and food to someone as obnoxious as me who wouldn’t stop yelling for Eastern.
Eventually we went back to the game and watched the Montana fans’ faces drop. There was a huge distinction in the noise volume between kickoff and the last ticks of the clock. That is some dedication, that people’s emotions are actually affected by the success or failure of the team.
The people I came with eventually got so disappointed that they wanted to leave early, but we stayed and watched Eastern win anyway. When we left the game my screaming and jumping for joy only increased. Well that, and I had been drinking for several hours by that time, and rubbing it in Montana’s faces was even more fun after we won. Unfortunately, though, even my Eastern friend still didn’t want to yell. Oh well, I did enough for the both of us.
So we climbed in the back of a friend’s pick-up truck, Montana style, and went to the liquor store/convenience store/casino to play a few rounds of video poker and pick up some alcohol. We finished the night off at the bars in Missoula, with more drinking, and more yelling for Eastern.