Smell that smell? It had been 9 straights days without a shower. Hurricane Sandy had me shivering in the cold of the Urban Jungle and I hoped that the metamorphosis was complete…the human stench of 17 win and 15 win Seasons was being replaced by a certain Wolfian odor that I hoped would get me accepted by the Pack.
As my newfound Claws hit the ground to start the trip across the East River, I knew I was in for an adventure just to reach the Rusty Turtle. The first D Train arrives…no chance, more crowded then the Wolves bandwagon come April. The 2nd D Train arrives…I leapt, I Howled, I’m in.
I arose from the underground once again thinking to myself, why do I root for these Wolves, there’s an NBA team just 2 subway stops away. But the pull from this Nets team is polar magnetic. I mean look at these guys…Deron William, Joe Johnson, Brook Lopez, Kris Humphries, Avery Johnson…the collective charisma of a moon rock. And besides, I went Sleeper Cell way back in 2003, moving to NYC just for this moment, mingle amongst the locals as a wide eyed Nets fan…only to tear off the cloak once I’m seated.
I followed the crowd and came upon the Barclay Center, and I immediately began to think that shouldn’t it be Centre not Center? Barclays is a British Company after all…the one that swallowed that Kurt Rambis of a company Lehman Bros for pennies. I sat in that circular video screen façade replaying the Mary Tyler Moore hat throwing moment, excited to be able to see my team, my boys, ready for #WolvesUnited. As I waited for the rest of the Pack to join me I got a chance to soak in the aura of this truly original stadium. Picture and Alien Spacecraft and Queue up a Close Encounters Bum – Bum – bum-bum-baaaaaaaa. And the space ship vibe doesn’t recede when you get inside, steel grey walls and black, lots and lots of black. As you enter the Court area in the nosebleed seats its more black. The seating is so dark you can barely see the person 4 seats down. All the focus is on the art of the game, the court, which is lit up like Broadway. The whole Arena, all the energy in that space plays to a modern industrial gothic drum beat. A truly aggressive approach to Stadium Design. And the style of the in-Stadium production? Ingmar Bergman would be proud….or possibly aghast. For the uninformed just think about those highly stylized Calvin Klein Underwear commercials and that is how you get all the Player Introductions. All the Graphics are in Black and White. And the Scoreboard screens are HUGE…and in HD. So the difference in the real players and the HD Screens are basically non-existent, its like a parallel computer program running redundancy and you sometimes get the feeling that “are we just watching a simulation program?”
But oh what a simulation it was….