So, bottles have been falling out of the air at Eden Park again.
Not for the first time and not the last.
Anyone who has been on the terraces through One Day Cricket Internationals know that things fall out of the air all the time that would surprise Jim Hickey. Once, at an Australian game, a giant Pink Panther flew through the air, narrowly missing me but taking out the bikini clad girl in front and spilling her drink, too!
Brian Rudman reports in the Herald this morning of grapefruit wars, and nothing stings like ice from 100 foot up. Combine that with the guy next door urinating on your feet and the rivers of vomit that has it’s source somewhere 20 rows up and then you know you’re at a classic Eden Park event.
So the weekend’s aerial bombardment is nothing new except that it normally doesn’t happen during the winter codes. And that’s only because the games aren’t long enough to get truly stonkered to a point where throwing projectiles randomly in the air in a crowded environment seems like a rational thing to do.
So, obviously that’s the end of double headers. And Mexican waves.
But I worry in the aftermath of the league lagering that Eden Park is going to adopt an even worse alcohol delivery system.
Years ago in America a spectator suffered an horrific head injury after a full bottle of booze landed on his bonce from somewhere behind. Lawyers were called and the club and stadium held to account. In their defence they claimed they had no control of the chucker, nor control of the projectile’s trajectory. Days of responsibility ducking evidence was presented.
Throughout the spectator’s lawyer remain silent, contesting nothing, but with a brown paper bag in front of him. And when he finally came to give his submissions he stood and said, “This would have prevented my client’s injury”, and he lifted the brown paper bag to reveal…
A paper cup.
And that’s how bottles and cans left the stadia of America.
Eden Park currently has the plastic bottle option with a limit of 4. It makes for ease of service. Hand over your 20 bucks, get 4 drinks. (As we all chant at anyone taking forever with a complex drinks order, “TAKE 4 AND F%$# OFF!”.)
The bottles are resealable and fit in a pocket. They’re light and recyclable and cause no injury as long as you drink all the contents first, and who wouldn’t ‘cos you don’t waste a good beer.
Well, this weekend we found out that league fans do. So thanks to the idiots who did throw the full ones we may very well see the paper cup next year.
Paper cups are a nightmare. It takes an age to fill each order as anyone who was at Laneways this year will tell you.
But the big problem is spillage. Spillage in transportation. Spillage on your lap by the dickhead trying to get to his seat. Spillage by foot as you cheer a try. Paper cup beer means rivers of spillage.
I’m sure we won’t see dry stadia next year as Heineken is a major sponsor, but after this weekend’s fiasco I have a horrible feeling the stadia will be very wet. Sopping, in fact.