If you live in a major U.S. city, and you’re not bed-ridden, chances are you’ve spotted a pro athlete out and about. If you live in Vegas, and you have a pulse, chances are you’ve seen Gronk, Johnny Football and probably Floyd Mayweather. Ever wonder what proper etiquette is for a pro athlete sighting? Let’s explore some ideas.
1. Physically remove them if they are encroaching on your personal space.
I was at a bar with my friend one night, and as we were leaving, a tall, gangly figure impeded our progress. That figure was none other than Brandon Marshall, Jay Cutler’s second favorite target, behind opposing cornerbacks. Recognizing him, and not remotely caring who he was, I pushed him out of my way like I was J.J. Watt en route to a sack. My friend joined the push-fest. While he didn’t look thrilled at being pushed by two girls, our maneuver was effective. Besides, he’s used to getting pushed, right?
2. Do not stare at them if you do not want them to speak to you.
My dad and I saw Jeff Reed at a restaurant in the Burgh about six or seven years ago. Now, if you’re a Steelers fan, you know Jeff Reed as the biggest bro in Pittsburgh sports history. The dude had more frosted tips than a Backstreet Boy!
Being of sound mind and body, I had no interest in interacting with that mess of a human being, but my stupid, college-aged self didn’t know the “don’t stare” rule back then. Well, on my way to the bathroom, Mr. Reed, ever the charmer, locked eyes with me and uttered “Sup, girl?” After a few more embarrassing attempts to hit on me in front of my dad, Reed finally gave up. What a guy!
3. Do not take a picture unless authorized to do so.
My boss recently told me a hilarious story about how he and a few co-workers saw Jay Cutler at an event one evening. Apparently he was pretty cool until someone tried to snap a photo of him. When he noticed someone taking a pic, Cutler flipped out on the dude, screaming at him and telling him to respect his privacy. Lesson learned, Jay. I guess asking if he watches Laguna Beach reruns on Netflix is out of the question?
4. Do not buy them a beer.
Seriously, these people make more money than you. I think it’s hilarious when people buy pro athletes drinks when they see them out, as if these people do us a great service by existing. Even the scrubs are getting half a mil. Save your beers for the local firefighters.
5. Tell them how much you love their rival team.
Just kidding. That will get you punched in the face by their body guards, because they don’t want to be fined by their league’s commissioner for punching you.
This has been your guide to a successful pro athlete sighting. If you follow the above rules, you will likely avoid getting your butt kicked by body guards and getting hit on by bros like Jeff Reed and Patrick Kane. And remember, if you see Jimmy Garoppolo outside a club in Chicago like I did last weekend, don’t yell “Hey! It’s Jimmy Garoppolo!” This will draw attention to said athlete and make him not want to talk to you. Don’t be that person.