How to Sit Courtside at Madison Square Garden

Close to the action at a Knicks game, a writer gets some advice from Kenan Thompson of “Saturday Night Live.”

Madison Square Garden went very quiet when my face appeared on the giant screen above center court. The silence was noticeable. A few seconds earlier, Kenan Thompson’s face had brought down the house.

It wasn’t like anyone gasped or got angry — no one seemed taken aback. It was just that no one knew who the hell I was. And why should they? I’m not famous. I had no right to be up there in the first place.

Still, it was hard not to take it personally. Eighteen thousand people — New Yorkers, no less — had decided to silence their cheers. Eighteen thousand people had agreed, as one, to reject me.

The chyron below my face on the GardenVision screen read: “Actor.” That hurt, because I no longer think of myself as just an actor. It also hurt because the subhead read: “‘The Wolf of Snow Hollow.’” Solid movie — I mean no disrespect — but it’s just that I die within the first three minutes.

At 4:45 p.m. that day, my manager, Harry, sent me a text: “Is boyfriend still here?”

I thought he wanted to hang out with us, which I didn’t feel like doing, so I considered lying. I let my typing bubbles go … and I let them go away. Harry texted again: “I have two extra courtside tickets to the Knicks game.” Honesty is the way, etc.

I’ve done my fair share of sitting courtside. I know that sitting courtside is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, and I can’t think of a more annoying fact, but I’ll come clean: I’ve sat courtside upward of 30 times. What can I say? I’m a good guest.

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Source: Basketball -


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