It’s basketball season again. Time for pep band and both proverbial and literal elbows in the face for band geeks like me. My freshman year, I was shocked at the blatant disregard for boundaries in the student section. My first accidental shove off the bleachers was quite the rude awakening. I already couldn’t believe it then, and now its about five times worse. Territorial invasion has now merged with jeers and flat out rudeness, and it’s unacceptable.
We’ve tried all we can think of to defend our space. Cones, caution tape, the works. Unfortunately, nobody seems to get it. I constantly see students read the cones that clearly state not to touch them, then promptly move them out of their way.
When we arrived at the game on December 14, the cones were all shoved aside and students had taken up residence in the band section. There is nowhere else for the band to go, as we are in need of the floor space in that particular corner. At that point we have no choice but to ask you to move, and we do it as nicely as we know how. All of us hate having to do that. We make it plain and clear where we need you to avoid, so please don’t pretend to be shocked and offended when we kick you out. It’s flat annoying and just makes you look foolish.
One particular angry student even brought it upon himself to offend us in response. “Never in my three years at Lowry, has the band ever needed this much room,” he said. “It’s stupid.”
He is absolutely correct in the regard that we need more room, but at the time, we had just as much as we have in years past. This year, pep band is required. It wasn’t before, so we have a lot more people. Other than to keep the student section from smashing us into the side rails and each other, the boundary is to protect our instruments; many of which take up more room than the person playing them. They are very delicate and can cost more than your college scholarships.
Sadly, this student also took it upon himself to hurl insults across the crowd for as long as he thought we would listen. Believe me, we get it. It is a basketball game, not a band concert, but it definitely isn’t about the student section either. It may be centered around the athletes, but we are performing too. A lot of us work just as hard athletes, and sometimes harder, all year long.
At the games on January 19, we tried caution taping a line from the wall to the floor. When we arrived, not only was it torn down, but shredded. We throw ourselves on the line for the athletes and the student section, not for us. What we do is difficult. The disrespect you give us in return isn’t exactly encouraging.
Athletes, band geeks, preps, or nerds; it doesn’t matter who we are. Consideration is a basic human right, even if you can’t bring yourself to appreciate us. It’s just decent human behavior, Lowry.