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Avioding a Match, or A Match Day (or Two) In the Life of a Red Bulls Supporter: Philadelphia Union

Jason Iapicco wanted to watch the match against the Philadelphia Union, but life doesn't always allow for what we want.

Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

As those who listen to The Red Bull Rant know, I don't live in NJ. This is an important fact only because almost all of my family, both my wife's side and mine, live in NJ. This means that we are back in NJ a lot for family events. Generally we arrive in the state Friday night, attend the events on Saturday/Sunday, and get back sometime Sunday afternoon/night. This doesn't help a die hard New York Red Bulls fan in watching games, especially when knowing the result ruins the watching experience. Over the last 3 years, since I moved, I've learned to control myself and perform certain actions to avoid any spoiling of the game. This timeline of events starts Saturday morning.


9:15 am: I wake up after having my dog annoy my wife and I all night. I realize that Everton is playing in about 45 minutes. I plan to watch this game live because I know that NBC Sports might be showing scores on the bottom of the screen during the Red Bulls match (I was right).

10:00 am: I settle in to watch Norwich City-Everton on my wife's laptop. I'm treated to a great opening Everton match in where they give up a goal early in the second half, manage to get two of their own, and of course give up a game tying goal, resulting in a 2-2 draw.

3:00 pm: Wife and I get in the car, and travel to my Uncle's house for an annual family BBQ, which happens to be scheduled on the day of the RBNY-Philadelphia Union match.

4:00 pm: Arrive at my Uncle's house, say the obligatory hellos, and settle in while we wait for food to be served.

5:00 pm: This is where my finely tuned social media skills come into play. Even though it's still three hours until kickoff, I decide to start ignoring things. I open up TweetCaster on my phone, and turn off all notifications. While I have new tweets always ignored, I don't want any mentions showing up that will ruin the game for me. I don't turn off notifications for Facebook or E-mail. Facebook doesn't matter because the notifications I see won't reveal anything. I need to leave e-mail on in case I get anything important. What I do is very carefully opening the notification panel, and if I see any terms that relate to the Red Bulls, I immediately ignore notifications for the rest of the night.

5:30 pm: I double check that I set up the game to record on my computer at home. I have a TV tuner card with 4 tuners installed in a desktop, which acts as a cable box. I also have a app on my phone (Remote Media Center) that allows me stream/download any recorded TV. This will help me watch the game because MLS Live has a 48 hour blackout for nationally televised games.

8:00 pm: As the TV coverage and game kicks off, the party is starting to wind down.

8:45 pm: After taking a family photo, it's time to leave, so my wife and I get back in the car and head back to our "base camp", if you will.

9:45 pm: Arrive back at where we're staying, and hang around outside since it's a nice night out. I could turn on the TV at this point and see what's happening, but I personally just can't stand to start watching midway through if I can help it.

11:45 pm: About to head to bed, I open up Remote Media Center on my phone, and start the download of the recording of the game. I get to bed as the download will take a while.


7:00 am: I wake up, but am still tired, so I plan to get some more sleep. Before I do, I check the status of the download on my phone. Remote Media Center says the download is complete, so I head back to bed looking forward to watching.

10:00 am: After waking up and taking care of my morning rituals, I settle in to watch the match. I open Remote Media Center to see that it can't connect to my computer at home. I don't think anything of it, but apparently this doesn't allow me to watch the video through the app. I head to my downloads folder to look for the video file. When I get there, I see the file size is WAY too small for a two and a half hour recording. So, it looks like something happened to stop me downloading the whole thing. More on this later.

10:30 am: I decide to check MLS Live via the MLS Match Day app (which has scored turned off), to see if maybe I could get the MSG broadcast, if there was one. No luck on that end, so it looks like I have to watch when I get home.

1:00 pm: After getting the dog in the car, the wife and I head home.

4:45 pm: After getting home and taking care of some things, I head to my TV PC to see what happened. Apparently the server software that allows for remote connection crashed during the night. Thankfully, the PC still recorded the whole game. So I settle in and watch.

7:20 pm: After taking a break to do laundry and get dinner, I finally get through the end of the game. I sit on my couch dumbfounded that NY only has 1 more attempt on goal than Philadelphia does considering they had 63.3% of the possession, and ended the game in a 0-0 draw.

So there you have it. That's my normal routine for trying to watch a RBNY game on delay, which I unfortunately have to do more often than I would like. Let me know what you do if you can't watch live.