I have witnessed two different ways to get blacked out at the Bren Events Center. One way will allow you to enjoy the benefits of being a student at a Division One sporting event. The other will get you kicked out of that same sporting event. You make the choice.
Friday night at the Bren Events Center was historical. Not in the sense that there was some miraculous sporting moment during the volleyball game or an important figure in the world was in the stands. It was historical in the sense that I will never forget the night our UC Irvine men’s volleyball dominated the Stanford men’s team.
I was sitting at the media desk by myself, and I was focused. I was told by the Irvine Libero Brent Asuka that Stanford had the potential to possibly take the win. With that in mind, I was heavily invested and anticipated a clash between these two giants. Irvine put my anxiousness to a rest very quickly. Starting out the match with 5-straight points, the Anteaters dominated. It was a blowout in the making. This was a slight relief as I was not able to sit back and watch our guys dismantle them. It was a perfect night at the Bren.
Well, it was perfect for about two sets.
As the first set came to a close, I noticed one of my roommates in the “Trash Talkers” section at the far end of the court. I let out a little smile and felt proud that my roommates decided to be a part of this game. But at that same moment, one of my other roommates saw me peering over and gave me the finger-gun to head, the “I want to kill myself gesture.” Then he pointed to my other roommate (I’ll call him Alfred), swaying next to him on the bleacher, looking like a palm tree being pushed around by a sea breeze. Alfred was hammered. He was in the midst of some very important trash talking and was contributing nothing. My pride for him slightly diminished, but I could not be mad at the guy. It was actually quite entertaining to watch.
In the second set, the play picked up slightly on the Stanford side and the action was getting more intense, but as the crowd got bigger, Alfred’s energy got smaller. He eventually decided to make his way up to the regular stands on the student side. If you were at the game, you most likely saw him. He was the kid, sitting by himself, slumped in passed out position in between two rows with a purple sweatshirt on. Being inconspicuous is not his strong suit, apparently.
Meanwhile, the other, not hammered roommate had been coming up to me in between timeouts giving me the update on how the crowd was reacting to Alfred. Apparently he was the talk of the section. People started going up to him and poking him, inventing the latest tradition at the Bren, poke the passed out kid.
At this point, I began to cover two events on Friday night. I was fully invested into the match at hand, but at the same time, I watched the energy of the crowd. I watched as the kids started to just be in the moment and enjoy their night at the Bren. Being rowdy and obnoxious was encouraged for the students in the crowd and everyone that had the balls to do so, was giving Stanford as much of a hard time as possible. It was beautiful. It was college.
Alfred woke up the next morning and got the full story of his escapades. He does not remember too much of the night. At the start of the third set, he was escorted out of the arena by campus police and I came to the realization that this type of black out was not the way to enjoy the night. I love the kid, but one too many never had a more honest result.
Luckily for the sober conscious student body, there is another way to get blacked out. This would normally be something I would advise against. However, there is one time when I will encourage everyone on campus to get blacked out at the Bren. On Wednesday, Feb. 18, the athletic department and ASUCI are going to put on another huge event. The entire student body will be expected to wear ‘Eater Nation black shirts and get blacked out at the Bren Events Center.
The men’s basketball team will be playing Cal State Northridge and the game will be televised on ESPNU.
This is huge.
Instead of getting blacked out like my roommate, do it the right way next Wednesday and get out to the Bren Events Center for the first ever blackout night. There will be more information in our next issue along with e-mails and promotional events that will be sent out in the next week. Check it out.