As the thirty people (Hi, Mom!) who read what I write know, my favorite things to discuss are political, social and/or religious in nature. The thing is, researching and writing about only that stuff tends to give me headaches and a minor case of depression, because our world is basically one giant Sisyphean nightmare.
That said, I decided to take a break for the sake of my mental health and write about something that requires absolutely no research at all: TCU Football attendance! Well . . . it should require research, but fuck it.
Specifically, I’d like to talk to you about a troubling phenomenon called the “Horned Frog Half Time Effect,” a name that I just made up but will soon be on all the kids’ social media (#HornedFrogHalfTimeEffect #HFHTE). But we’ll get to that in a bit.
The Southern football culture is a powerful one. When the sport is in season, it dominates the headlines; televisions everywhere are constantly tuned in to games; and if there are none on, then we watch endless cycles of replays and loud debates on ESPN and read about the latest case of a prominent player sexually assaulting/beating/murdering a woman. Football is like a soap opera, except the broken personal lives and violence are real.
When football isn’t in season, we never let ourselves or our friends forget. We post pictures and statuses of our favorite teams on Throwback Thursday and Flashback Friday; Nebraska fans remind you of their decades’ old dominance on Memories Monday; Cowboys fans remind you that “THIS IS OUR YEAR” on Turn Back The Clock Tuesday; On We Remember Wednesday, TCU fans post pictures of Gary Patterson pulling up his pants and staring you down through his Transition Lenses, as his water/towel girl ties his shoes and holds back tears of unfathomable sadness.
But enough reminiscing on the off-season social media joys of football—there is an issue to discuss. You see, the thing that makes college football in particular so great are the traditions. Students especially are drenched in them. First, students wake up early and don their Sunday’s best because that’s how you dress for football games in the South. Soon thereafter, they have the inevitable-unavoidable Mimosa or seven. And don’t forget to take pictures! Because, if you don’t post a picture of your game day Mimosa . . . well, you still had one didn’t you? Stop taking pictures of beverages.
Students then mosey on over to a tailgate, and are all mysteriously and inexplicably late. Since they are all also behind on their BAC level, they then slam beers and shots to catch up to the other students who were also all late and are now playing catch up as well. This leads to an infinite regress of people trying to catch up to others who are also trying to catch up, therefore everyone gets really drunk.
After drinking and listening to at least half of some Top 100 playlist, students (apparently barely conscious, because alcohol) stumble into the stadium to get a seat. For thirty minutes of game clock, TCU students are rockin’ fans. But then . . . something happens to the girls, who incidentally constitute a whopping 59% of the student population. With the Mimosas and Fireball and Coors Light wearing off and the Texas heat cranked up, certain Ebola-like symptoms begin to set in: lethargy, headache, and nausea. The aforementioned women solve this in one of two ways: By going to the nearest bar to drink more, or by going to bed. And then they never come back, leaving Amon G. Carter with a feeling of emptiness to which only Gary Patterson’s aforementioned water/towel girl can relate.
At first glance, this claim makes me seem outrageously sexist. “Quinton,” the fiery feminist reader (presumably named Ahmiracle, or something equally woke) indignantly begins, “while this claim of yours may be true, the girls are not at fault here! We are victims, you misogynistic truffle.”
“How?” I reply, confused, my brain, horribly twisted with blind 20th century gender bias, only able to focus on the sandwich this faceless woman is not making me.
Another enraged woman chimes in. “Because, you men are supposed to entertain us! How can you expect women to sit through three-plus hours of what is basically modern day gladiators?”
And then it clicks. Reighleigh (pronounced Riley—BFF of Ahmiracle) is right. No matter that we are in a stadium packed with thousands to watch a Top 10 team playing in a top conference in the most popular sport in the country. As men, it is our job to entertain the women in our midst at all times.
Though it pains me to admit it, I am no stranger to this fault in men. My ex-girlfriend always left half way through movies because I wouldn’t talk to her. I should have known better—despite there being a film playing for which I bought tickets, it was still my responsibility to entertain my guest. This nasty habit of mine frequently led to me enduring movies alone in silence, having to eat the popcorn by myself and embarrassingly having two straws popping out of my ICEE . . . one of them forlorn in its disuse. It was the price paid for being a bad boyfriend, and I deserved it.
But I digress. This all really boils down to the gender ratio, a fact which I briefly mentioned earlier. Favoring females roughly 59:41, TCU men must step up to ensure our football stadium remains packed until the buzzer buzzes its final buzz. Giving a rib was not enough, you selfish woman-haters—we must entertain our gentler halves, because we are the entertainment, not the game. Say nothing of fair weather fans! Say nothing of privileged and lazy students who lack anything resembling true school spirit! Say nothing of minors who want to use their fake ID’s or hop the fence at Rock Bottom! Say nothing of the half-time hangovers that lead helpless souls and stomachs to gorge themselves in the BLUU!
This is the fault of men: period. So let’s entertain those beautiful women (did I mention they’re all beautiful, and therefore even more deserving of male attention, unlike unattractive girls), and let’s recruit more football-loving men to balance out that ratio and pack the seats left empty by the poor victimized women. This is literally the only possible solution to this very real and very troubling problem.
It’s game time and we’ve got second-half seats to fill. So…where do we start?