ARE YOU READY, HARVARD?" "Are you ready, Yale?" The referee blows his whistle.
It is a supreme moment. The pent-up feelings of the past year are suddenly released and one is brought face to face with the realization that within the coming two hours the pendulum of the Fates will swing either to victory or defeat.
Oh, the glory of victory! The heroes it produces, the congratulations it calls forth! The supreme happiness and intense satisfaction entailed more than repay all the preparation and the strain of a season's work; and besides, the world loves a winner.
In utter contrast, consider the sting of defeat. We have all seen the crestfallen players limping dejectedly from the field, but the real, dull pain of defeat comes after the physical weariness has worn off, when the mind persists in reverting to that everlasting "if." "If," soliloquizes the Coach, "I had not been swayed by others but had only planned my defense according to my own judgment, that winning play of our opponents would never have been successful."
"If," moans each of the players, "I had only done so and so, they would never have licked us."
So the wound is constantly kept open and before a healthy cure can be effected there follows a distinct tendency toward misunderstanding, lack of confidence, and sometimes actual dissension in the camp of the vanquished. It is a wretched situation.
If it is one of the big final games of the season to which we are going, I trust we have allowed plenty of time on account of the congestion of traffic - the neck of the bottle - which always occurs at the approach to the field, and have arrived at least twenty minutes ahead of the scheduled time of the game.
Now this is an extremely difficult feat to accomplish, as our gracious hostess insists on delaying luncheon until her entire party has arrived, and our convivial host will not be dissuaded from "showing us a little attention." Other little five-minute delays keep cropping up and before we realize it, we are caught in the maelstrom of the crowd and, after a thorough bumping about among people who all seem to be unusually large and good-naturedly rough, we arrive too late for the opening play of the game.
Let us assume, however, that we have arrived in good season. The choicest seats are naturally considered to be at midfield, although if one has drawn a goal-line seat great consolation is often derived from the fact that the most vital play of the game happens right "under one's nose."
Few people realize what a tremendous coigpe of vantage is gained by viewing the game from a height sufficient to obtain an aero-view, so that one player's body does not hide another's. The players are thus diagrammed, as it were, and seen from a position far enough removed to include in the field of vision all the members of both teams when lined up in scrimmage formation, except those players of the defense who are stationed thirty or forty yards back of the scrimmage line. But one should understand that, at this distance, the speed of the players is not so apparent, and one does not see individual facial expressions nor hear the impact of contending players as plainly as from the sideline seats. Nevertheless, for a comprehensive view and understanding of the game as a whole, I strongly recommend the elevated location.