Monday, November 29, 2010

A Cultural Experience

It was 6 o'clock on Black Friday, and I was standing in a line that wrapped around the outside of the building.  Every single one of us wanted the same thing.

Except it was 6pm, the crowd was angry after a hard loss, and I was about to spend $8.50 on a two-word order.  "Provolone witout."

I wasn't sure if I would like a cheese steak.  They look gross.  I've never been brave enough to try them, but this was a weekend of new food.  Crab, lobster, pierogies, shoo fly pie, scrapple, potato filling, Wilbur buds, and cheese steak included.

Mr. Steve: Do you like steak?
Katie: Yes.
Mr. Steve: Do you like cheese?
Katie: Yes.
Mr. Steve: Do you like rolls?
Katie: Yes.
Mr. Steve: Then you probably won't like a Philly cheese steak.

We didn't have time to do all of the touristy things on my first trip to Philadelphia, but our Philly-native tour guide took us to Pat's, Little Italy, and the Wells Fargo Center.

When it comes to hockey, the City of Brotherly Love does not live up to its name.  I've been to professional hockey games in four different cities: Chicago, Nashville, Raleigh, and Philadelphia.  For every game, the away team won, but never has a crowd shouted so many obscenities at the ice as they did in Philly.

I knew I was at a different hockey game from the very beginning when the players for the opposing team, the Calgary Flames, were announced.  After each name, I am used to the crowd shouting, "Who cares?"  Not Flyers fans.  No, they shout, "Sucks."  If the word "Sucks" is accepted in hockey, might as well use it in every viable opportunity, eh?

Who would have through that this family-friend sport in the city of brotherly love would have been so... well, unloving.  The crowd of almost 20,000 breathed, cheered, and booed collectively.  As the game progressed, the more entertaining the fans became.  If I hadn't been glued to the ice for every shot of the shootout, I would have been entertained by the lone nuts, the orange chaos, and man with the "Insert here" sign.

I was so glad I was wearing a the jersey of a Western Conference team, the Nashville Predators, rather than another Eastern team.  I might have gotten cussed out (like I did in Chicago) for supporting the opponent.

I do know that if God ever moves me to Pennsylvania, I'm going to have to give up hockey.  There will be no rooting for my Predators in the Wells Fargo Center.

I might need a cheese steak and some Wilbur buds to sulk.

<>< Katie

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