Rather than create a brand new post for each and every update on recent issues we have covered here on Tailgatingideas.com, why not combine them all into one? Yeah, I thought that might be a good idea too.
First up, update on Pinto Ron’s battle to tailgate in the Buffalo Bills main parking lot. If you were with us last week, we told you how Kenny Johnson, a.k.a. Pinto Ron was Not Welcome Anymore. Apparently the NFL and the Buffalo Bills were trying to discourage his unorthodox tailgating style and were concerned about liability issues. Well apparently the NFL and Pinto Ron have kissed and made up albeit with a few concessions on both sides.
As reported in the Mid-Week Eye Candy Wrapper #96: Justene Jaro Edition, Pinto Ron was contacted by Christopher Clark, the Bills’ director of security who encouraged him not to move his tailgating spot. Not much else was disclosed as to why the Bills were now valuing Johnson as a main fixture in the lots and had a change of heart. Johnson did say he will discontinue the tradition of giving out shots of Polish cherry liqueur out of the thumb hole of a bowling ball.
Johnson made national headlines when the Associated Press reported he would be moving his tailgate party across the street after he felt no longer welcome. This caused an uproar amongst Bills fans and the radio call in shows went berserk. So a lesson to all of your tailgaters that are feeling a little mistreated… get some press out and make some noise. The NFL can be beaten and you don’t have to take whatever they dish out lying down. The New Orleans fans took matters into their own hands in regards to the whole “Who Dat” controversy. Learn from these people and understand just because they are the NFL does not mean they can push you tailgaters around. You hold the power, not them.
Remember how we told you about Cleveland tailgaters getting up in arms about losing three hours of tailgating in the famed Cleveland Muni Lot? If you read some of the comments on the petition asking city officials to reconsider the decision to open the Muni Lot at 7 am instead of 4 am, many were concerned with the traffic congestion and gridlock this would create. Call them prophetic because traffic delays and gridlock is what occurred last Sunday.
Browns tailgaters didn’t follow the City of Cleveland’s suggestion of entering at 7 a.m. Instead, they decided to back the freeway up and also South Marginal Road. The staging lot was packed by 5 a.m. and the line to the first lot was so backed up that Cleveland police opened the lot at 6 am in order to avoid traffic jams and a potential for endangering people’s well being by encouraging a traffic accident. I am pretty confident that Ghandi and Dr. Martin Luther King were not tailgaters but I am sure both of them are smiling at the Browns tailgaters use of civil disobedience to fight for their right to party.
And in a final side note, here is some good news from an NFL franchise that understands the importance of tailgate nation. The Houston Texans are well known for having some of the most dedicated and die-hard tailgaters in the NFL. And because Texans fans are so into their tailgating rituals, it is easy to lose track of time. That is why the Texans management has installed a 170-decibel air horn on top of Reliant Stadium that will sound 30 minutes and 15 minutes before kickoff.
If I may opine for a moment….. that is freaking genius. I can’t tell you how many times I have been scrambling to pack things up and put them back in the car in order to go through the security pat down and be in my seat before kick-off. Setting your alarm on your cell phone or constantly looking at your watch sometimes does not cut it. If every stadium had a horn like they do in Houston, no one would have any excuse for missing kick-off.
Finally, an NFL franchise that respects and understand tailgaters. What a refreshing change.