Get into the Action

The Screaming Eagles Nest is full of men and women who have made the leap from being just spectators to being active supporters of D.C. United at RFK stadium.

Nest dwellers unite together to stand, sing and cheer for the full 90 minutes of the game. We also use our creativity to design banners, flags and other visual effects to show our support of the team (aka tifo). If you are new, please use our printable song sheet, follow the drum beat and just jump in when new chants are started (if there is a lull, feel free to start a chant).

To keep the Nest enjoyable for ALL, there are a few simple rules:

  • The Nest (Sections 132,133, and 134) are general admission (which means you need a ticket to get into the section, but the seats are not assigned).
  • We cheer in support of our players.
  • No tossing of ANY items, liquids or otherwise (with the exception of streamers and confetti).
  • No incendiary devices.
  • No fighting or racism (these are grounds from expulsion from the club as well as from the Nest sections)

Being a 12th Man means you will lose your voice, your body will ache afterword and you might miss some of the action. However, sharing the experience of a D.C. United victory with your fellow Screaming Eagles makes it all worth while!

Musings on The Nest

by David Lifton

Over the years I’ve been asked countless times to describe what the Nest is like and yet, I have never come up with a sufficient definition.

The only true way to know what goes on is to throw yourself smack dab in the middle of it.

But I will share a few of my first experiences for you to try to give you an idea. I joined the Screaming Eagles shortly after MLS Cup 1997. I watched the first game of the 1998 season from a different section, but for the second game I made my entry into the Nest. I still have vivid memories of that game. We were losing 1-0 to the Revolution late in the game when Brian Kamler got a foot on a loose ball and scored to tie it up. The celebration that took place around me was as if we had won the Cup.

That was topped a few minutes later when Scott Garlick stopped former United hero Raul Diaz Arce in the final round of the shootout, the much-despised tiebreaker used by MLS from 1996-1999, to give United the victory. I then knew that there could be only one place for me to watch the games from now on.

A month later, we were playing Columbus. I was starting to get comfortable with the idea of starting songs, and my new friends and I would look to write new songs every week. A player by the name of Billy Thompson entered into the game. I had never heard of him, so I started singing “Who the hell is Billy Thompson?” to the tune of “Battle Hymn of the Republic.” Instantly, it got picked up by the group and grew pretty loud. The only problem was that nobody, including myself, knew what the fourth line of the song was, so when we got to it, we all looked at each other and burst out laughing. That, to me, is the spirit of the Nest at its anarchic best.

All we’re trying to do is sing and support United week in and week out, and have a lot of fun while doing it. While there are very basic rules for behavior in the Nest beyond the stadium policies, there are a few helpful guidelines that should be acknowledged:

  1. When in doubt, sing.
  2. There is no set order for which songs are sung. It’s as much a running commentary on the game as anything. When someone makes a good play, we sing his name. It’s as simple as that.
  3. If there’s a lull in the singing, don’t be afraid to start a new song. Sing loud and get those around you to join in so that it can spread throughout the Nest.
  4. Jump.
  5. Always remember that we’re there for the team, not the other way around.

Occasionally, I have experimented with sitting in different sections, sacrificing the atmosphere of the Nest to get a better view of the whole field. But I have always returned and I don’t see myself moving from my spot any time soon.