EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. — I set off to New Meadowlands Stadium last night with every intention of breaking the law. I think the charge would be public indecency. I had a FlipCam, three cock shots, and no sense of social mores.
The assignment was to walk around outside the stadium before the Vikings-Jets game, show people photos of Brett Favre's alleged cock, and capture their reactions on video. We'll get to the physical threats in a moment. For now, suffice it to say, that vaunted Minnesota nice doesn't extend to young men holding photos of their quarterback's alleged cock.
After walking through the parking lot for a few, I decided on a group of fathers and college-aged sons in Jets gear. I told them who I was and what I was doing at the game. They were receptive the idea. One of the fathers took me aside and briefly began telling me about a web venture he was planning, but his sons quickly told him to shut up so I could show them pictures of a penis. It was a lot less awkward than it sounds.
"Mine's bigger" was one of the more popular responses.
Moving along, I came across another group that included a man with a Jets No. 4 jersey. This would be interesting. After asking if they would appear in a video (they declined), No. 4 started peppering me with questions. "Who's the greatest quarterback of all-time?"
"Joe Montana," I replied.
"No, who is the greatest quarterback of all-time?"
"I'm pretty sure it's Joe Montana."
He started pointing to his jersey.
"No way," I replied. "Ken O'Brien sucked."
He was not amused, and his friends began to make their way to the stadium. I wished them well. It wasn't until several minutes later that I realized I meant to say Glenn Foley sucked.
Soon, I came upon the first jersey burning of the evening.
I quickly met the master of ceremonies for the burning, and he had some interesting opinions.
After that, he told me to grab a beer. I obliged, but was soon met by some critics of my mission. Nursing a Bud, I asked some more people if they wanted to participate.
"Where's your wristband" they asked. "You can't drink without a wristband."
I explained how that guy—I was pointing—had said I could grab a beer. They were simpatico until I brought up the dick shots.
"What the fuck are you doing? You're going around with pictures of another man's dick and asking if people want to see? That's sick, man."
Others misunderstood and thought I was asking them to show me their dicks, or if they wanted to see mine. This was not the case.
"That's it, you've gotta down that," a man said, alluding to the Bud I was still drinking. This didn't seem like the challenge to back away from. I chugged.
"If you lose to this guy, you're a pussy," the man's friend said.
"He's concentrating," they said about me.
Beers down, they said I was all right but it was still weird that I had pictures of a dick in my backpack.
"I can see that."
I moved on to the first group of Vikings fans I had seen. They didn't want to talk to me and literally turned their backs.
I walked some more, looking for more Vikings fans. I walked through a lot of games of catch. Apparently, people think it's funny to fake a handoff when you walk within a few feet of such a game. Maybe.
Finally, I found them. One had what I think was an old Vikings Jim McMahon jersey; another had an Adrian Peterson. The women with them were wearing Vikings jerseys, too. I walked up and said hi.
The women joked that they didn't like me because of where I was from—Deadspin—but the men? They were not joking when they said they didn't like me. I asked them what they had to say about the allegations.
"You need to leave."
C'mon, guys, just a quick word.
"If you don't get the fuck out of here, I'm going to punch you in the throat."
"Have a nice evening."
I found another group of Jets fans near the outer edges of the parking lot. They weren't impressed with the pictures.
I moved on to another group. They heard where I was from and within seconds I was handed a Coors Light. However, almost immediately, the rain and hail began. They invited me to hang out with them under their tent. The lighting under the tent was not optimal so the videos I got with them were fuzzy at best. But they were nice Jets fans. Nice fans who gave me beer. At one point, some fireworks went off behind us.
Eventually, the rain subsided. I tried to get in a few more interviews before kickoff. These young people, well, they were really polite.
The "what sort of spy are you" line happened because my trusty, little-used Elements of Style had fallen out of my backpack. Luckily, it fell out with an old Gawker Media pay stub, and I was able to explain my way out of the situation—asinine as it was.
I began walking toward the train depot as the game approached, but then it started raining again. Really, really raining. By the time I got all the way back to the train I was soaked. My Elements of Style had gotten wet. My train tickets were FUBAR. Luckily, everyone else on the train was soaked too. Murmurs swept through the car that the game was going to get canceled because of the lightning. However, after about 20 minutes, the train started moving. Soon after, I was back in Hoboken. As I waited to get off the train, someone screamed, "Jets 3, Vikings nothing, baby." Before I knew it, there it was: "J-E-T-S..." That chant isn't as annoying today.
Image via Mike D.