Tuesday, February 8, 2011

News That Makes Your Head Ache

Here's the big newsbomb of the day: Due to some kind of renovations, seat-shuffling, or temporary seating arrangements that were not completed by game time, Cowboys Stadium in Dallas was, apparently, not adequately prepared to honor all the tickets sold for Sunday's game. You know. The Big Game. The one I'm not allowed to use the name of because the NFL has that moniker copyrighted.

Anyway, some 1250 fans—holders of tickets for which they had shelled out $800 a pop, not to mention travelling and hotel costs—arrived at the stadium for the game to find they literally had no seats to sit in. Aternate seating arrangements were scared up for about two-thirds of these folks. Leaving 400 or so out of luck. Bummer. Big bummer, to be sure.

Certainly, the NFL owes these folks something. A refund on the ticket price. Re-imbursement for travel and lodging costs. Maybe season tickets on the fifty yard line of their favorite home field for life. At a cost of peanuts to the money-generating behemoth of the National Football League, they could go a long way toward smoothing the ruffled feathers of the fans involved.

The league, however, seems to be offering no more than an official, "Sorry—our bad!" and free tickets to next year's championship game. Huh? What if my team isn't playing in next year's game? If I'm a die-hard Cheese-head, why would I want a free ticket to see, say, the Bears and the Giants duke it out in 2012? Duh.

Some of the fans, however, are intent on taking this to their own level of hyper-stupidity. One Pittsburgh Steeler fanatic was so po'd by the goings on that he has decided to hire a lawyer. And to try to draft others of the 400 or so affected fans to join him in a lawsuit. From the CNN.com story:

Rush has now started suesuperbowl.com, one of at least two websites for fans mulling possible lawsuits over the seating issue. He said he is obtaining legal counsel and is urging affected fans to get in touch. So far he has heard from about a dozen people, he said.

"We're still figuring out what our rights are, whether damages come into play or not," he said. "This is more than just a breach of contract. ... This was a very traumatic experience for a lot of these people."

Where do I start?

1.)I submit that anyone who would pop for an $800 ticket, plus the travel and lodging costs, to personally witness a bunch of astronomically over-paid and over-promoted adult men elevate a kid's game to the level of kill-or-be-killed blood feud, already has more money than sense. They don't need a windfall from the NFL.

2.)Damages? What damages? Do you still have both arms, both legs, all your fingers and toes, and all the brain cells you had the day before you went to the game? Are you able to get up in the morning, go to work, play golf, swig a brew or two at your local pub, kiss your wife, hug your kids? Damages? Give me a break.

3.) And this one most of all: "This was a very traumatic experience." Traumatic? You have to be kidding me. Do you have a clue what real trauma is? Trauma happens when airplanes fly into big buildings, or when you watch your nine-year old get shot in the head by rabid border-control fanatics, or when you drive a jeep in Iraq, waiting for the next roadside pile of rubbish to explode and send you to kingdom come. Trauma. If you can manufacture a crippling case of PTSD out of losing your seat to a football game, you also have more issues than any amount of money is ever going to fix.

Go ahead. Be bummed. Be pissed. I'd be pissed. I'd want my money back, and then some. Maybe a few "gimmes" from the guys who were so focused on squeezing every dollar of profit out of the event that they oversold the damn stadium (nothing, by the way, that the airlines don't do every hour of every day.)

But let's not raise this thing to the level of lingering emotional damage and trauma. Get your refund, get a few coupons, and GET OVER IT!!!

And to the NFL—surely you have enough loose bills lying around that you can figure out how to put a smile back on the faces of 450 righteously disaffected fans. Put one of your seven-figure-salaried marketing executives on that, will ya?


sunflowerkat321 said...

Anyone who as been "traumatized" by this has led a sheltered and/or charmed life. Yeah, I'd be pissed...anyone there had shelled out a boat load of money to be there would be. But guess what...s**t happens. They should be thankful if this defines "trauma" in their lives.

Kathy said...

Pissed, disappointed? Sure. My response would be to never give the NFL a dime of my hard earned money. Period.