Article in yesterday's WSJ on Why Fans in the U.S. Prefer to Sit and European Fans Stand at Professional Sporting Events (sub req):
It goes back to "the middle ages, when the nobility sat and the common plebs stood," says Rod Sheard, senior principle of the leading sports architecture firm Populous and designer of the Emirates. "All of America is nobility. Everyone thinks they're king in America."
Populous? Whew. How'd you like to work for a place with a ridiculous name like that?
Although I have fond memories of being in the SRO (standing room only) section for North Star playoff games at Met Center, all in all I prefer the US custom of being seated for sporting events. However, I do get annoyed by the folks who think you should be seated for the entire game. If it's the bottom of the ninth and our closer is out there trying to save a one-run lead, you better believe I'm standing. Or if we're down one with our goalie pulled trying to tie it up with a minute left, I am most definitely not staying in my seat. If you don't like having your view blocked, then get up, stand up like the real fans are.