Named to Goalden Times' Wordball 2017 list of the best football writing of the year (Contemporary category).
You can’t hold it in. You get up to use the bathroom before halftime, thinking there will be fewer people. As you’re walking up the steps, you pass the fans yelling the chant. They do it again right as you pass them. It’s right there, literally in your face.
You get to the concourse at the top of the stairs. You realize you had less time than you thought you did. You decide to chance it and go to the men’s room. It’s not that crowded. You do your business and try to leave.
Except, when you’re washing your hands, some drunk bro barks something in your direction. He’s slurring his speech, but you’re pretty sure he said, “you’re not s’posed ta b’in ‘ere.” You ignore him and quickly dart out of the restroom. You know you got lucky that time.
You get a beer and find your seat again. Because of the concession stand lines, you don’t get to sit down until the 52nd minute. The teams have changed ends, so it’s the home goalkeeper near your section of the stadium. Some fans stopped chanting puto. Some didn’t.
Mostly you just want to go home.