I’ve been waiting to buy a ticket to the NFL’s San Francisco 49ers home opener since the team’s season ended.
I’ve paid for a pair of tickets at the team box office and even checked out a Giants jersey on eBay, but they were the exception rather than the rule.
A ticket to a 49ers game for the first time since the season began was worth a cool $10.
It was the first ticket I had ever paid for, and it was going to cost me the rest of my $30 ticket bill.
The Giants game was set to start at 11am local time (12pm GMT) and I knew I’d need to find a ticket by midnight.
And that was just fine with me.
“I think it was the Giants,” says Myles Kroll, who was on his way to the 49ers’ game against the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday when he saw the tickets going for $20.
I knew that was a bargain.
I’d already paid $50 for a ticket a year ago to see the Bears play the San Francisco Giants at Levi’s Stadium.
But this time I had no idea how to order the ticket online.
“It was like, oh, this is a big deal,” says Kroll.
“You’re not going to be able to get a refund.
But you’ve got to take it.”
That’s when he decided to do something unusual.
“He just had to buy one, I guess,” Kroll says.
“That’s how you start out as a ticket buyer.”
I was still a bit shocked when I got my first ticket.
The ticket cost me about $25, which I’d spent on other tickets in previous years.
But Kroll was excited about the Giants’ home opener.
“The Giants are so good.
I think it’s going to take a team that’s on fire to get through the season,” he says.
I was going for the win, not for the money.
“This is a lot of fun,” says my wife.
And she’s right.
The 49ers won a hard-fought playoff series over the Patriots, but the 49er fan base was just as excited as anyone to see a team they’ve been rooting for for years.
And for many, the game was a chance to relive the excitement that they had when the team first started winning.
That was before the advent of the social media and the internet.
But even though it was my first time, I knew exactly what to expect from the 49s game.
I’m not a die-hard 49ers fan, but I can tell you this: There’s not much excitement in the stadium.
The fans are quiet.
They’re quiet in the stands.
There’s just people in seats, waiting to see who’s going home.
And, yes, the Giants fans are loud, but that’s mostly because they’re a loud bunch.
They boo their own team and the home team, and they cheer when the 49ERS score a touchdown.
They cheer when their team scores a touchdown and they boo when the Giants score a second touchdown.
And they boo their home team for doing anything other than kicking a field goal, which has been the norm in San Francisco for years now.
“They are one of the loudest fans in the NFL,” says NFL.com sports editor Tim Kurkjian.
“And it’s because of their booing that the 49ingers have done so well in the playoffs.
And it’s one of those rare times where you don’t have to worry about booing the home fans.
You just have to boo the team.”
“They’re not that loud,” says Raiders cornerback Eric Weddle.
“But the fans are.
And the fans boo the home crowd more than the opposing team.
That’s one thing that’s been great about the 49-49 rivalry.”
There’s no booing The 49er fans are usually loud, and when the home-team team scores, it’s a huge roar, and there’s not a lot to it.
“If you want to boo them, that’s fine,” says Rams safety Eric Rowe.
“There’s a reason why the fans love the 49 team.
They know the history.”
I can see why.
After the Seahawks defeated the 49 49ers in Super Bowl XLII in Seattle in February, there was a lot more excitement in San Franciscos stadium.
But that wasn’t the case on Sunday.
The loudest booers were the Giants, who had to leave early to play the Rams at home.
The game was one of two home games for the Giants on Sunday and they came out of the locker room to the noise of the crowd.
“For the most part, we were going to boo our home team,” Rowe says.
The booing of the home group was loud enough that the stadium was already full when the game started, and by halftime, the loudness had started to decrease.