I can be anywhere at any time and hear “Moooonica!! OMG !!!” followed by the source of the jubilant squeal putting their hands to their face in sheer excitement and continue “I finally did it!! I finally went!! OMG!!! I LOVE it”.
I smile happily without saying a word, I know there is another line coming and yes, there it is: “I am soooooo hooked, it was soooooooo cool, I am sooooooo going again!!” Finally I get a chance to say “Do I need to say “I told you so?”, which funnily enough I’ve never had to do yet! It’s always a joy to meet a recent ‘convert’ – a previous non Zero-Fees Southland Sharks supporter that gave it a go, came out and checked out a game for themselves. I normally ask if it was what they were expecting, and if I was wrong? The answer is so far a resounding “NO!”, and that they loved it. Recently a very happy friend came bounding up to me with her usual enthusiasm to tell me that to stop me from nagging (haha) she finally went to a game for the very first time to ‘check it out’ and was happy to report she was so converted she was going to all the remaining home games! And she made a point to mention that the noise level was nothing like she expected, “the newspaper got it wrong again off course, making it sound worse than it is – it was the perfect night out, I really enjoyed the music, the whole atmosphere was just amazing” she claimed. That’s music to my ears. Another friend went to her very first game with her husband and wanted right there and then buy tickets to the remaining home games only to find out that they would be away for them! She wasn’t too impressed but vowed to buy season-tickets for next season, that’s how much they enjoyed it. Off course my Sharklets (kids) have loved going since we started going last season, they haven’t missed a home game either and it’s a great ‘carrot’ to dangle in front of them to make them do their chores and homework, otherwise “no Sharks” – you’d be amazed how quickly those dogs are fed, rooms are tidy and homework is being worked on. I’m such a ‘nag’ apparently that I’ve also convinced my own mother to venture out at the next home game. At the ‘young’ age of 68 she’ll be coming out for her very first basketball game on Sunday, also apparently “to shut you up”, hahaha, fine with me! She has always enjoyed my tales of the court, just about reliving the entire game in vivid detail and off course my Sharklets pipe in at various times to agree and demonstrate how high their favorite players would jump in the air to make a basket. My Sharklets have their own favorite players; one is fairly consistent while the other can at times change his mind each week, rattling off the entire team when you ask him which player he likes best before admitting he can’t make up his mind and that he likes them all! At least he’s honest. It’s not unusual for me to have a couple of extra Sharklets in tow on game day, skillfully pilfered from elsewhere, and there’s always happy chatter on the way in as the car is full of anticipation. On the way back home afterwards we can get a little rowdy and spontaneous singing and yahooing can never be ruled out! Nothing can ever be ruled out at a Sharks’ game either – from nail biters to the hurtful losses to the wide margin winning games – it’s always exciting, exhilarating, special, fun, passionate and spectacular. You’ve really got to see it for yourself! I’m telling you – yes, ok, I’m a nag, but seriously, you should!!!
See you at the game Sunday, 7pm tip off, Stadium Southland.