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September 06, 2008

Game Time

Donald Pittenger writes:

Dear Blowhards --

I live about three miles from the University of Washington football stadium. This seriously affects my life the five times a year when the Huskies are playing at home, especially when I need to get to the University Village shopping center that borders the athletic corner of the UW campus. Traffic gets nasty and parking difficult to the extent that fans ignore the "No Event Parking" signs by the Village's lots.

During the football season other signs are posted warning of heavy traffic during certain hours on Saturdays. This week, we were warned that driving might not be fun between the hours of 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. Hmm. That implies an early game. Sure enough, today's newspaper noted that game time today would be noon.

And the Husky-Notre Dame game we'll be attending 25 October is scheduled to start at 5 p.m.

Noon? Five in the afternoon? Ominous signs that the World is Going to Hell.

In my frat boy days, games started at 2 p.m. daylight savings time and then 1 p.m. when standard time returned. Mid-November, when the eight-game season ended, dusk would be approaching when the fourth quarter clock ran out.

Thirty-some years later a regional sports television network installed floodlights at the stadium at its own expense -- that's how I remember my son's explanation of how they came to be. The result of having good field lighting is that the Huskies can play games whenever a TV network thinks it will fit its schedule, and the university, earning bonus shekels, happily goes along with the deal.

So much for the student-athlete ideal of my mis-spent youth.

Yes, I'm a self-confessed capitalist tool. But I'm also a conservative and therefore something of a traditionalist (provided the tradition isn't nonsensical or counter-productive). So I don't like my original alma mater turning into a two-bit street tramp.

Oh well, I have enough other gripes about the place that I don't donate to them anyway.

(BRIGHT NOTE: I noticed a gal on her way to the game wearing a tee shirt with the slogan "My quarterback is hotter than your quarterback" -- so maybe all isn't lost after all.)



posted by Donald at September 6, 2008


If it makes you feel better, the Huskies lost on a ridiculous call.

Posted by: thehova on September 6, 2008 10:55 PM


When did you go to the UW? Or when did you move to Montlake/U-District? Your complaint about the hours of the games might have some traction if you are talking about the 70s and 80s or earlier (I have no idea as I was born in 1977). But otherwise you are out of date. I graduated from the purple lady, and my lovely sister and I had season tickets the entire time we were there (a total of 7 years), and the default time for kick-off was always 12:30, with the occasional (about once a season if I recall) night kick-off, which meant 5 or 6 o'clock.

I fully admit ignorance about the 80s, but by the late 90s and certainly into this decade (2000s), 12 or 12:30 has been pretty standard. I can't quite figure out what your rant is about? Either you are getting old or there's some sort of cosmically important Platonic difference between 12:30 and 1 o'clock? Please tell me, O Blowhard deities, should I relinquish my faith in your wisdom? Or am I missing something?

PS: Brutal loss today for the Dawgs. Ugh.

Posted by: nuclearD on September 7, 2008 4:26 AM

nuclearD -- I got my BA there in '61 and an MA in '66. Lived in Olympia 1975-2006, so wasn't in total touch; it's my son who's now the sports nut in the family and who keeps track of details. I live over a fence from Windermere.

As for the Huskies, I don't bleed purple any more (though I was in the stands for their first two Rose Bowl victories when I was an undergrad). Some of my ardor was sapped by moving on to Dear Old Penn. Then age has done the rest. I recall PA system calls for doctors when I was in school and then reading in the next-day paper about purple-bleeding old alumns who had flat-lined during the game. I used to get keyed up a lot over the Dawgs, Packers, Raiders and other teams and finally, by the time I hit 50, figured that I didn't want to get flat-lined over some lousy sports event. So now I'm cold-blooded about it all; in the Pac-10, I follow Oregon these days -- to the extent that I follow sports any more.

As for game times, well, you need to keep in mind that I regard my main role here as being an entertainer (though I try to educate and advocate on occasion). Which means that some (but not all) of my pounding the cane on the table riffs are just for fun and the agitation of readers.

Posted by: Donald Pittenger on September 7, 2008 10:29 AM

Re: 25 October

Go Irish! Beat Huskies!

Posted by: Nathan P Origer on September 7, 2008 10:11 PM

Night-time football is fairly standard in hot climates - Texas, Arizona. Remember that movie Friday Night Lights?

Posted by: Rich Rostrom on September 11, 2008 3:25 PM

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