One of the Guys

Every year, my dad and his two best friends attend the Big East Tournament at Madison Square Garden. It’s a pretty big tradition for them. Every year, they  bring a fourth, and this time, I got lucky. Villanova was playing so I was thrilled to be there, but I didn’t know what to expect from hanging with three middle aged men. Well. I drank, I gambled, I swore; I truly became “one of the guys.” And learned some life lessons along the way.

1. Don’t drink coffee at a bar. This might seem obvious, but in my defense, I did not think we would be going to a bar at 11am. My dad and I got into Penn Station and considering I had been up since 5am, I decided to grab a Dunkin Donut’s iced coffee (because that’s normal to do in the morning). But once Kevin and Paul (my dad’s friends) showed up, we immediately went to this bar where they proceeded to order beers and chicken wings. And heckled me for drinking coffee.

2. Being attached to your phone isn’t a gen-Y only thing. You know how your parents are always yelling at us because we never put our phones down? Well my dad and his friends aren’t much better! We all were checking our phones throughout the day. The only difference? They were checking their emails while I refreshed Instagram…

3. Even 50-year-olds like getting sloshed at basketball games. Don’t worry everyone! The fun doesn’t end once you graduate college! Just because you’re over the age of 25 doesn’t mean that you can’t get pretty tipsy at sporting events. Let’s just say the beer was flowing from 11am to 8pm.

4. Sometimes grownups like to act like little kids. My dad and his friends loved photo bombing and taking funny pictures with strangers. For example, a Creighton fan next to us literally fell asleep during the Nova game (blasphemy). Of course my dad took a picture and they giggled about it for a good 10 minutes.

5. First time at the Garden? They’ll make sure you end up on the jumbo-tron. Can you say 5 minutes of fame? During the “Dance Cam” between games, the trio made sure the camera guy caught us doing the YMCA.  And they made damn well sure that I was in the center of the shot.

6. Don’t gamble with the big guns. Part of the Big East tradition is to play a numbers game which involves gambling every 10 minutes of the game. We watched 3 full games. You do the math. (Aka I lost a lot of money because they didn’t pity the poor college student. Womp).

7. Basketball will never be the same for me. Seeing the Cats play at the Garden is probably one of my favorite basketball memories from college. Being there with the man that spent years teaching me the game? Actually the best. Apparently I made a good impression with the guys because they said I could become part of the tradition, regardless of where I end up next year. #gocatz.

Here’s to having the best dad ever & loving basketball way too much.

{P.S. I met a nice Georgetown fan. I know, shocking. I met her in the bathroom and when she saw my shirt, she congratulated me on the win. Then she commented that we were probably on a crash collision course because she was a Georgetown fan… to which I responded, “Oh, okay.” But then she started ragging on Syracuse fans so she redeemed herself. A little. That’s the Big East for ya. I still hate Georgetown though.}

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