It is Monday morning, my voice is gone and my ears are ringing because I went to Wrestlemania 24 last night. Not only was I at Wrestlemania, but I was in the second row, mere feet from the stage with my wonderful girlfriend. It was one of those incredible once-in-a-lifetime things like finding a four-leaf clover in the Grand Canyon while being attacked by a bald eagle during a blue moon. Rare and majestic. Only I paid a lot of money for the privilege and it didn’t involve talons. For others, the experience was hot. Literally.

When you are at the very front, you get to keep your chairs which is nice since they are fairly comfortable and come with a custom design. The downside to their value is that they bind all the chairs together in a row so people aren’t thieving them or moving them around. This leads to very little elbow room for the fans, which can lead to conflict.

So now that I am a Wrestlemania ringside seat veteran, I offer these courtesy tips to avoid conflict inspired by the guy who sat beside me.

Tip #1 – I am a stranger to you. While I am not unfriendly, I paid my money to see the matches, not to see your ratty circa 1998 Kane shirt or your toy championship belt both of which you are unreasonably proud. I honestly could not care less.

Tip #2 – Speaking of your championship belt, it is fairly big. Why did you bring it? Maybe you could wear it instead of constantly hoisting it into the air in front of my camera… or into my camera. God bless the protective camera strap. An permitted celebration involves throwing your hands into the air sans care, but be mindful of where your elbows are heading. Again, my camera.

Tip #3 – Wrestlemania is a marathon. Four and a half hours in the same seat. Some hungry patrons like to get food at the stadium. If you do this, try to put the refuse in the garbage can located at the end of the row rather than inches from my feet. If you choose to carbo-load before the event instead, maybe you want to lay off the more gassy foods like beans and cabbage.

Tip #4 – Since the distance between seats is roughly six microns, if you are one of the larger fans, (there are fat people who like wrestling, surprisingly!) maybe you could buy two seats, one for each cheek? That way, you have room to dance and thrust and I’m not getting molested by your rolls the whole time.

Tip #5 – The art of negotiation is nuanced. Usually, it involves you receiving something of value to you and the counterparty receiving something of value to them. If there’s an extra seat at the end of the row and you would like your buddy to come down and join you, offering your (closer) seats to the nice couple in exchange for a contiguous section of seats for you and your buddies may be a reasonable trade. An unreasonable offer to make is for us to “slide down” away from the ring so your buddy can join you.

Tip #6 – Sit down. Sit. The. Fuck. Down. How many times does that dad in the third row have to tap you on the shoulder telling you his kids can’t see because you are springing up thrusting your championship belt in the air like there is a Twinkie in it for you? Acceptable reasons to stand include: briefly taking a photograph, seeing the ring entrances (everyone stands), stretching your legs in between matches, leaving to use the restroom, fireworks are about to hit you, terrorist attack. Unacceptable reasons: you just want to.

I know we are all big wrestling nerds and it is very exciting to have such great seats, but by showing a modicum of decorum we can all enjoy the show together, especially when chanting together that Floyd Mayweather can go fuck himself.

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