You knew this was coming....The gloating blog.
Yes, the Gators are back in the Chompionship game.
(This blog has lots of pictures so remember if you double click on the pictures you can see them bigger)
Has this been an awesome year or what.
Before I forget...My "sure thing" ticket for the National Championship game just went kapoot, so I am back on the prowl for tickets again.
This is what happened...
I have Gator basketball tickets and I have a friend that has Gator football tickets. The big games are always me and him. So when the Gators went to the Final Four in basketball, TWICE, I took him. So when we talked about this year he said, "Yeah, we can't break up the team." So I was pumped. Turns out he did get two tickets to the big game but now he says he is going to take his son.
I don't think it was entirely his fault. I think his father, who really has the tickets, put the screws to him about going with his son. So what are you going to do?
But if his kid should "accidentally" fall down a bunch of stairs and break something...I am back in.
So my buddy and I left for Atlanta on Friday at about 4pm.
It was about a six hour drive. We took my minivan (it gets about 28mpg on the highway). Let me tell you two dudes driving down he street in a minivan...real manly.
We stopped for some steak on the way and got into Atlanta about 11:30pm.
We stayed at my friends in-laws house about 35 minutes from the stadium.
This is the view from their back yard. Not a bad gig if you can get it.
We awoke to some danishes and coffee and some good conversation. Then we were off to the Georgia Dome at about 9:30am.
We drove up to the stadium at about 10:15am (the game was at 4pm) and the first parking lot we saw was $40, and as we got closer it got as high as $60, we drove about 50 yards more and there it was "Public Parking $8".
We couldn't believe it. So between the $50 and $40 lots was an $8 lot.
We scored, big time. Here a picture of how close we parked to the Dome.
We have a cigar (I know it is bad for my gums) and a beer. Yes at 10:30am.
We first went into the Convention area next to the Dome for a hour or two. They have this thing called "Fan Fair". Well it is this huge event that has all these games that you can participate in. (This was in a huge area. It was so big that there were more than 3 half football fields in this area. There were over 50 different things to do.) Throwing footballs through the sausage in order to get a free T-shirt. You could sign up to get on a flag football team and play in a round robin tourney. All sponsored by big companies. Give aways like crazy. We did as much as we could.
They had autograph signings with old Gator players and quarterback challenges.
(there were all kinds of fans at this "Fan Fair", here is a good example of some crazies)
We then got a text from on of my buddies friends saying he is at this bar around the corner. So we went back to the car to drop off all our crap. Yes, I got the free T-shirt with a sausage on it.
Then we went to the bar.
Now as you can imagine the bar was jammed. We waited outside in a line were you could buy beer while you waited.
This bar was unbelievable. It was 4 levels. In one of the levels there were booths. Now these are not any kind of booths. These are booths that seat eight but in the middle of the table were not one but two beer taps in the middle of the table.
The server would come over and turn the thing on and there was a digital read out of how many beers you have had. Genius, pure genius.
Where was this bar when I went to college? I guess I am glad this bar wasn't around.
We stayed in the bar for about an hour or so and saw some of his friends around one of these tables with the taps on it. In addition to the free flowing beer the server was just walking around handing out bottled beers. He asked me if I wanted one. I said, "uh well I don't know the guys in this party, yes I want the beer."
So my friend talked and I drank.
But we never found his original friend. The guy I was with knew a lot of people.
We walked around the bar and after a text we found out that this guy was upstairs in the private balcony. So up we went. Food everywhere and again free flowing beer. It was outside but there were space heaters everywhere.
Like I said...great bar. It was called STATS.
We were having so much fun drinking and eating and messing with the Alabama fans. I would say they were too.
We started making our way to the game at around 2:45pm.
I have been to the Georgia Dome before (remember Final Four last April) but never to a football game.
It is such a nice facility.
As I started to look at the landscape it started to appear the Gators were out numbered about 55-45.
We were sitting in the end zone and up on the third level. (Hey, we were there.) Come to think about it there were a lot of worse seats. The end zone is not a bad place to watch a game. You can see all the plays...playing out.
The game was a real nail biter. A great game. I asked the guy sitting next to me if he thought they provided AED's this high up. They say that it was an instant classic.
The Gators won.
That is all that mattered. It is the reason I came. This made the rest of the trip so much better.
So instead of sulking and going straight home it was a victory cigar
and then back to the greatest bar in the world...STATS.
It was 8pm and we were wiped out but we didn't want it to end. But we had our limits. My friend had a reservation at Ruth's Chris at 10:30 but we just couldn't do it. We started making our way back to the car at about 10. We were wiped out.
Home at about 10:45pm and straight to the TV to watch the end of the Oklahoma game and more football talk.
Up and out by 7am the next morning and home by 1:30pm.
A total blast.
Back to the topic on Friday.