It has been close to 5 years now since I have posted here. Quakes have a new stadium... I still do not have a season ticket. I was at an event put on by our local youth soccer club tonight and the Quakes "Street Team" was there.
Don't think I am ready to jump into season tickets again...mostly because of time and $. One day...
Sunday, June 20, 2010
H and my family were at the FC Gold Pride v. Boston Breakers game last night at CSUEB (Pride 1-nil victory BTW).
Anyways, guess who we ran into at the game? Sitting in the same row and just a couple of seats over was our very own Montez Harrison (Sr. Fan Relations Rep for the SJ Earthquakes). We exchanged hellos and Montez asked us if we were ready to come back to a Quakes game. "Nope". She than said, "Well, when you are ready, come on down." My response was, "be sure to call me when the drum policy changes.". Montez replied, "You are on the top of my list to call if that happens."
Wednesday, May 19, 2010
Tuesday, May 18, 2010
I really appreciated the letter I received from Mr. David Alioto, Executive Vice President of the Q's. His letter was very professional and we can agree to disagree on this one. I sincerely appreciate the organization's willingness to provide me a refund on my season tickets (their policy is that all tickets sold are non-refundable). My decision to end my affiliation with the Q's was just that - my decision. I could have continued to attend games sans drum, but have chosen not to do so.
A couple of questions did come up for me after reading the letter:
(1) "Allowing four (4) drums only in Section 109 has enhanced the fan interaction not only in Section 109 but throughout the entire stadium on game days." The 4-drum policy was enacted only a few days before the next game and this letter was received by me shortly after that game. So how was this "success" measured? What variables were used to measure "fan interaction" through out the stadium? All of this was discovered only after one game?
(2) "Fan Relations and Guest Services have received nothing but positive responses to the new changes..." What was my letter? A non-response? Again - all of this was determined only after one game?
Message to the Earthquakes: Establish you policies BEFORE the start of the season so all of your fans understand them (don't just communicate them to the supporter groups). Use an entire season to evaluate the policies. Changing them all of the time and mid-season confuses fans and stadium staff.
Sunday, May 9, 2010
Future posts on this blog will be very limited due to the circumstances. Interesting that our friend "Proud Smurf", a loyal Quakes supporter and a member of the Ultras, has decided to take up our cause. He will be asking a "high-level" Ultras member to talk to the Q's organization abo ut letting us in the stadium with our drums in Sec 108. I don't expect alot to come of this, but it does mean alot to us to have someone in our corner and supportive of us as fans - and he is doing this on his own accord (we did not ask for help). Thanks Smurf!
Friday, May 7, 2010
Sorry to those who may be reading this for the first time. You need to go back to some earlier posts to get caught up on this mess. Basically:
For 2 years, my cousin H and I have been diehard supporters of the San Jose Earthquakes since they returned to the MLS. We cheered and drummed in Section 108 - to increase the energy in a stadium that is really lacking in enthusiasm. We understand that "soccer" is not a big spectator sport here in the U.S. and that the Q's are trying to build a fan base.
So fast forward to the beginning of this season. I show up to a pre-season game at Kezar Stadium in San Francisco (Q's vs Houston). I am told that I cannot bring my drum into the stadium (not just Kezar, but also Buck Shaw - where the Q's play their regular season games in Santa Clara) because it is MLS policy. I said then why have I been able to bring the drum in for the last 2 seasons without knowing this or being informed of this policy? Why did the Q's website at that time list "drums" as an approved stadium item?
In order for us to bring the drums we were told we had to enter the stadium one hour early and come in with the "official" supporters groups (The Casbah and the Ultras). We hesitated at first, but then decided to try it. We came early and continued to cheer as we had in the past. Heck - at the last game a father came up to us to ask if his young son could play the drum and we said of course. The dad really appreciated us helping his son really enjoy the game.
Then this week, we are informed that the drum policy has changed again - only 4 drums total are going to be allowed in the stadium and only in Section 109 (where the Casbah and the Ultras sit). H and I sit in Sec 108 right next to them. The Q's rep said that maybe we could talk to the Ultras, since they do not like drums, that maybe we could bring our drums as part of the 4-drum quota. The thing we would have to do is sit in Sec 109 instead. H said, 'Why would we want to take our drums and sit in a section where we know the people dislike drums with a passion?
So after a month of this back and forth, with policies being unclear and changing all of the time, we felt that the performance of the Q's organization has been poor. I think they are as confused about this issue as are the fans.
I love football (soccer), but not enough to endure this frustration with the Q's. The only alternative we had left was to decide to stop going to games. I turned in the remaining tickets in our season ticket packet this morning and received a refund. I know that the Q's organization won't miss us. I will miss the players and all of the friends we have made over the past couple of seasons in Sec 108.
This morning I posted the link to my blog on the Q's Facebook fan page and it was promptly removed (I guess by someone in the Q's organization). They can try to hide their errors, but that will do little good. Cow manure is.......cow manure (no matter how many pretty bows and flowers you cover it with).
Does anyone have the # for the ticket office for the FC Gold Pride?
Thursday, May 6, 2010
I just got off of the telephone with one of the Q's fan relations staff who was very courteous and professional. Basically - drums are going to be limited to only 4 in Sec 109 (the Casbah and Ultras).
Q's: Because the Ultras do not like drums, you could bring your drums in "to be part of the total 4", but you will have to move to Sec 109.
R: No - we do not want to move to Sec 109
Q's: That is all we really can do. I was hoping that we could come up with a solution for you. The policy will reviewed after 3 games - and if more changes need to be made, they will change them. We have also had growing complaints about the supporters groups and drums (Note: I know that there is unrest between the supporters groups, but was totally unaware of the general complaints about the drums.)
R: That's ridiculous to jerk the fans around like this.
Q's: We really can't do anything else. We would really love to have you as a supporter the remainder of the season.
R: How do I get my refund?
The match is over. The Quakes LOSE.
Oh, by the way, "DID YOU FEEL THAT?"
(Lisa, Ed, Sharon, Jeff, etc: Sorry to have this end this way. We will really miss seeing you all - it was such a great time last week (and the past 2 seasons). This whole drum issue and the feeling of being treated as "nothing" has drained both H and I completely. )