A couple of weeks ago, during their Stanley Cup run, the Boston Bruins media crew co-opted Wiz Khalifa's 'Black and Yellow.' Mmmmmmm, I'm gonna say that's just the kind of thing that's not done, or that you shouldn't do, or that you should be banished if you do it. I believe when it happened, I suggested that those guys be taken out and tazed, then shot in the face repeatedly. That's a bit harsh. This sort of filching is not quite a death penalty transgression, but it is the kind of thing that should make you a pariah.
It's like dating your friend's ex. Is it technically, letter of the law wrong? Probably not. But it's gross, it indicates a lack of feeling, a lack of ethics, perhaps even a lack of a soul.
It also bespeaks a revolting lack of originality.
But it got me to thinking, what traditions, songs and other sports ephemera are off limits, the province of one specific team or specific city?
'Don't Stop Believin'' is the Red Wings thing. It just is. (Yes, I'm looking at you Bruins staff. Again. Creativity. Look it up. Then get some.)
2. It's not all bad in Boston. 'Sweet Caroline' and 'Dirty Water' are the exclusive properties of the Boston Red Sox. Also, any and all Boston teams should feel free to use the Dropkick Murphy's, 'I'm Shipping Up to Boston,' at any time. For everybody else -- verboten.
3. The Rally Monkey? Always an Anaheim thing, even though they call themselves the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim these days. This is perhaps the most inspired, just plain goofy thing I can think of. The Angels are losing, and the stadium media crew just put this little guy on the jumbotron. A Rally Monkey is born. Genius.
4. If you catch a home run ball and you're not a Cubs fan at Wrigley Field? Hold on to it. You look like an all-world jackass throwing it back. Unlike this guy, who is clearly not a jackass. I don't know why it's kinda cool when Cubs fans do it, but it is. It's just pathetic everywhere else.
God Bless America during the 7th inning stretch of all Sunday MLB games, and give that song back to the Philadelphia Flyers.
6. No player ever, from now until the end of the world (or a Newt Gingrich presidency, whichever comes first), is ever, ever permitted to use Metallica's 'Enter Sandman.' And if you do, Mariano Rivera is well within his rights to zip a cut-fastball right into your eye-socket.
7. As we're in Yankee Stadium, the chanting out the names of each of the starting position players until they tip the cap, stays right where it is. Even in that circumstance, it is annoying, but it's original at least. If you want your own thing? Get one. It can be annoying, too.
Wiz Khalifa's 'Black & Yellow' is a Pittsburgh song. It is, specifically, a Steelers song, but it's cool with me if the Penguins and Pirates and the Pittsburgh Passion use it. Point is, it's written by a Pittsburgher about Pittsburgh. It stays.
10. So does towel waving. Yeah, it's such a simple idea -- a towel in your team's colors. But Pittsburgh's guy thought of it first. If you don't like it, yinz can take it up with the ghost of the dear departed Myron.
[Photos: Joe Louis Arena from stadiumjourney.com; Flyers/Stanley Cup from fuckyeahbroadstreetbullies.tumblr.com; Lambeau Leap from mentalfloss.com; Wiz Khalifa from okmagazine.com]