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Cal v. USC 10.3.09 Photo Essay I

Well, then.  So, the game was, ahem, not so good.  But these posts that I do aren't exactly about the action on the field, per se.  Although thanks to Monica's Dad, we do have some amazing action shots.  These posts are more about the atmosphere on campus.  The action off the field at the games.  Stuff that the people at home might have missed.  Or stuff that the people at home just probably might not even care about.

Honestly, I wish all the other SBN blogs did posts like these, too.  I realize few others are as obsessive with taking an endless cavalcade of mediocre photos as I am.  But I'd love to see what the pre-game, game, and post-game atmospheres are like at most every other stadium out there.  But it is what it is.  Other blogs try to offer in depth analysis of football plays and advanced discussions of strategies and tactics.  We offer hot dogs. 

Lots and lots of hot dops.  Top Dogs to be exact!


Yes, the second ever California Golden Blogs tailgate was a rousing success. 


Well, except for that whole "8th grade girl showing up."  Honestly, I'm still not sure exactly how she found out about us.  I have to wonder what went through her father's head when she said "Dad, I want to go meet up with some guys I met on the internet.  I think a R. Polanski invited me."  That ranks up there with "I have decided to become a stripper, dad" or "I'm becoming a Song Girl, dad!"  Wait, sorry for the redundancy there.

Of course, pursuant to Megan's Law, I did not speak or make direct eye contact with her.  But it definitely makes me think about my role on this website.  If the impressionable youths of America are hearing what I have to say, I should probably shut up.  Immediately.  I could single handedly make America a third world country within one generation. 

Actually, the worst part of the CGB tailgate was probably not the potential for underage debauchery, it was the fashion disaster.  Ruhroh! SOMEBODY'S GONNA HAVE TO CHANGE!



I thought we had a good turn out.  It amused me when turkey showed up, he walked up sort of hesitantly towards our motley crue of embarrassingly Caucasian internet nerds and said "Party Yacht????"  Like we were some sort of illegal speakeasy and that was the catch phrase for entry.  Which, of course, IT IS!  It's like our secret handshake.  "Party Yacht?  Yes, I, too, waste my employers time online at the California Golden Blogs."  Speaking about that, we saw our official T-Shirt being modeled.  Yay!



I won't show any photos of people's faces, of course, to protect their anonymity.  But we had the usual suspects show and a few fresh new faces I had never met before.  Like Kai.  And AndBears!  Unfortunately, no CalBear81.  I would have loved to see HolmoePhobe and Rishi harass her in person.  And I bet she could destroy them in shot-gunning!

There was a shotgunning competition.  RoyRules was immediately disqualified for being underage.  I believe turkey won.  But I wasn't paying attention to it, so perhaps somebody can chime in with more info.  And, potentially, a play by play.

DBall was there and had flown up from LA the morning of.  He said 40% of his flight to Oakland was USC fans.  40% of his flight was Cal fans.  And then the other 20% was UCLA fans for the Stanford game.  As to why they flew to Oakland as compared to flying to the UNBELIEVABLY closer San Jose airport???

Well, they are UCLA grads, after all. ;)

So, ya, it was fun, but soon we were on our way up to the game.  The game started at 5, but I decided to leave early to try to avoid crowds.  If I wanted to avoid crowds, I woulda been luckier going to Lovefest in Civic Center.  Or Hardly Strictly Bluegrass in Golden Gate Park.  Because it was packed.



We happened to run into the marching band on the way up.  Which I thought could work out well, because, even though I have tickets, it's always fun to sneak in with the band.  In the past, I've been able to just walk right in as they march in.  But they had changed things up this week and I was unable to do so.  :(!






Bowles Hall had done its usual amazing job promoting Cal spirit:



Bee Tee Dub, when I went through the gates, the security guard noticed one of my bottles of water (I always bring two).  She had me dump it out???  What is this new policy?  I tried to argue that I had a medical condition called Hydrothermia that required me to stay hydrated at all times, especially Cal sporting events.  But she didn't budge.  Thankfully, I had a backup bottle!

When I got into the stadium, I was immediately passed by Coach Mike Montgomery. 



The entire basketball team was there watching the game.




"PC hugging Sandy B"




I sort of jumped ahead there.  Sorry.  Anyway, players were still coming out of the locker room:






So, then I went onto the field to get good shots of the the warm ups.



Adam Duritz was there, but he no longer has a face.  He's just a giant ball of hair. 


There was a lot of stretching out there:





Yes, everybody was stretching!  Hey, that baton ain't gonna catch itself!

Some of the inactive players were coming out onto the field:



And the DLine was practicing beforehand:







That is probably as good a place to stop as anywhere.  Next up, we'll finish up the practice shots with some great photos from Monica's Dad and then take a look at the game.  It's much shorter this week, because, well, yknow.....