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  • "You suck, Sharapova!"

    The kid had been shouting incessantly during the first match of Thursday's night session at Arthur Ashe Stadium. My first trip to the storied tennis grounds of the US Open led me high up in the stadium's seating chart, away from the seen-to-be-seen elites in the boxes in the vertigo-inducing rises usually graced by the common populace. A few seats away, I sat quietly amused by this typical beer-swilling New York sports fan and his antics.

    Djokovic v. Petzschner headlined the second act. A mother and father pair sat down immediately next to me, creating a barrier between myself and the shouting fan.

    They were not amused. They told him to shut up. They complained under their breath. They were pissed off. Eventually, they couldn't take in any longer. The middle-aged lady started shouting back. The two stood up. They were enraged, yelling back and forth, defending and accusing. She slapped him. He put on a show. I sat quietly amused by these typical New Yorkers and their antics.

    Eventually the woman sulked off to her seat, having had enough of his posturing. The game was still going on, and it wasn't worth the fuss to continue fighting. As Djokovic served, the father of the lady, a veritable septuagenarian, stood up, kicked the cup of beer out of the fan's hands, and grabbed him by the shoulders. The kid reacted by pushing him over - the septuagenarian tumbled down three steep rows of seats. The crowd roared, the game stopped, and security interrupted.

    It made the news the next day—how often is there a fight during the genteel sport of tennis? A bunch of crowd members took cellphone videos of the fight and uploaded it to YouTube. These videos (now deleted) earned a million views in one day from the news coverage. And, suddenly, I saw myself. Sitting only a few seats to the right on the screen, my legs propped up on the seat in front of me, sitting quietly amused.
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