Opening Day bummer
6 April 2010
I sent a version of this blog to officials of the Brewers, but it bummed me out so much that I wanted you to be aware of it.
My name is Bill and I'm a lifelong fan of the Milwaukee Brewers. I own a small business and also work part time at a popular bar/restaurant on the weekends to supplement my income. This is an establishment that leans a little towards the bohemian side, and as such, most of my co-workers there are musicians, artists and/or students. Not exactly the Brewers core demographic. I often assume the role of organized sports ambassador and try and show them, that in it's purest form, sport can exemplify the same truth and beauty that any work of art can. Yesterday was a win for me because I got a text in the early morning from my co-worker L, a fashion design student and all around good kid, telling me that she was stoked that she was going to Opening Day. Several subsequent texts let me know that it was her first ball game ever at Miller Park and that she was going to make 2010 the year she adopted the Brewers as her team. In a nutshell, she was very excited.
Today a very somber L walked in and started sobbing as she told me about her Opening Day experience. She and her roommate G had gone and had a great time, despite the loss. Everything was wonderful until they were heading home. As they were departing the parking lot, a group of people began randomly throwing full cans of beer at their car. When G stopped the car to inspect the damage, he was set upon by a group of 8-10 people that began beating him to the ground. L got out of the car to try and get them to stop, and she in turn was attacked by what she later discovered was a husband and wife who beat her to the ground. As she was describing the incident to me, she couldn't hold back her tears. Her scalp is lacerated, she has bruises all over her body and her hair got torn out. This girl is all of 5-2" and probably 105 lbs and a grown man was punching her.
To their credit security and police were on the scene quickly and were able to make arrests on 4 of the assailants, but several others got away. There were numerous witnesses that attested on my friends behalf and confirmed their version of events. They told the arresting officers that they would of course press charges, but that is little consolation for a positive fun experience completely ruined by this unprovoked attack.
This sad situation didn't occur inside Miller Park. I know that the organization spends a great deal of time and resources on providing a safe and family friendly atmosphere at the ballpark. I also know that when you have 45,000+ humans gathering in one spot, there are bound to be a few idiots (maybe more once you factor in alcohol) and that this was atypical of the Brewers fan experience. What was troubling to me about this whole ugly incident, beside the obvious, was that L told me this morning that she doesn't think she ever wants to go to another Brewers game. And that stinks. She's not an irrational person, in fact she's a hard working, truthful, funny, and engaging young lady. I trust her with a key to my house and takes care of my dog when I'm away. In short, the kind of person you'd be proud to include in the Brewers fan base. I guess the proper terminology is that they were traumatized by their experience. I'm not sure if there is anything that can be done or fixed, but I wanted to tell you to know what happened yesterday, on that most awesome of spring days, Opening Day. Please look out for your neighbors both at home and in public.