Last week, I attended my third Bandits game of the season – an 11-10 win over Boston. It was a nail-biter towards the end, but the Bandits prevailed. However my excitement for the Bandits was replaced with complete awe. Not at the players, but at the fans. It’s like a totally different breed of people.

 I think I’ve broken the fans down into three categories:

1. Die-hards
2. Groupies
3. Stiffs 

And yes, every single person who attends these games falls into one of these groups.

The die-hards are the most prevalent. With a Trekky-like following, the fans sport copious amounts of facepaint, over-sized orange fists or hats (or both) and mohawks on one in three people. They are loud, proud and probably slightly crazy. I’m not dogging them though. (Hell no. I would never f--- with these people.) They are thoroughly entertaining. With each Bandit goal comes a secret handshake celebration of sorts. It’s like their own unspoken language. 

Then you have the groupies. Obviously everyone – from the famous to almost famous – has these. But boy, I have never seen so many of them in one place. Scantily clad in clothes that seem proper for…well…I don’t know, prostitution I guess. Younger, older, it doesn’t matter. They get decked out. For what? I’m not sure. But those gals bring “it” like nobody’s business. And, as I learned in line for the bathroom, they can turn on each other in a moment’s notice. One bestie went all Jersey Shore on the other without warning. It made the very long wait amusing to say the least. “The other day, when I was like doing it with Derek…” (insert laugh). “Oh. My. God. That was soooo funny. But why are you like blowing up my spot? I will totally kick your ass…” 

Last but not least, we have the outnumbered group at the game. The stiffs, my group, are the lamest of the lame. They’re the people who just sit and watch the game. Sure, they clap and chant, but there’s nothing entertaining about them. Some even look a little scared when the first take their seats, wondering what they got themselves into. And when the Kiss Cam finds them, well don’t you be thinking they’re going to put on a show. No sir. 

All in all, it’s pretty cool though. A friend of mine and current Boston Blazer player (I know, boo!) told me the only place he experiences this kind of rabid fan involvement is in Buffalo. No one else has the “B-O-X” chant. That’s a Buffalo original. He said we’re rowdy and crazy and annoying. Looks like we’re doing our jobs. 

So as you paint your face, put on your sluttiest outfit or enter a new world today, let’s hope the fans are not the only ones chomping at the bit for a win tonight. And let’s hope I can find that bustier I bought all those years ago.