This Sunday is the biggest single day of the year in sports: No, I’m not talking about the Fresno Kennel Club Annual Dog Show taking place this coming Sunday – although granted, that is a very big sporting event. No, I’m talking about this Sunday’s Super Bowl between the Baltimore Ravens and the San Francisco 49ers. I believe it’s Super Bowl MCLXXXXVIIIVX, but I could be off by a couple I’s.
This week I am donning my wife’s BBQ apron to share my secrets to throwing a winning Super Bowl party. A Super Bowl party is a great opportunity for men to bond with their buddies over the world’s greatest spectator sport (after female mud wrestling) and for the ladies to bond with other wives in the kitchen while checking on the status of our Meat Lovers’ pizza and replenishing our salsa dip – I noticed it’s getting a bit low, honey.
Fellows, when hosting a Super Bowl party, there are three parts to consider: preparations BEFOREHAND, what to do DURING the party, and finally, clean-up activities AFTER the party. Of course, most of you guys can skip Parts I and III, as those parts can easily be handled by your wife. Just put her in charge of the food and stay out of her way. She loves being in charge of something.
Part I: BEFORE THE PARTY
Make sure your wife has completed the grocery shopping well before kick-off. Her shopping list should consist of the following: Beer, chips, salsa, pizza, artichoke dip, beer, hot dogs, burgers, sliced cheese, beer, a roasted pig on a spit, beer, ice, bean dip, a giant piñata (preferably filled with bottles of beer), and diet Pepsi (for the ladies). Be sure not to forget the most important item of all: more beer.
Be thoughtful. I suggest buying a heartfelt gift for your special lady as a way of showing your gratitude for all her pre-party preparation. A set of attractive oven mitts would be a nice touch she would deeply appreciate.
When it comes to the beer, don’t sacrifice quality. The wrong beer can spell doom to any Super Bowl party, as your fair-weather friends make a raucous stampede out your door (with the roasted pig, beer piñata and the nachos) midway through the first quarter in search of someone else who actually knows how to throw a proper Super Bowl party.
Heineken, Corona, Molson, Dos Equis, Red Stripe, Sapporo, Labatt Blue, Guinness Stout, any pretentious micro-brew from Seattle or any beer with the image of a big-chested German beer maid on the label.
Jimmy Dean’s Sausage ‘n Ale, 7-Eleven Premium Beef Jerky Beer, Four Loko Raspberry-flavored Energy Beer, Listerine Peppermint Ale or any beer with a label that reads “Property of the U.S. Army.”
Part II: DURING THE PARTY
Guys, in some ways this is the easiest part, as all the cooking, food preparation and serving arrangements somehow seem to magically take care of themselves. Don’t meddle in the kitchen checking on the status of the burgers. That’s your wife’s job. Your job is to be the proper host, answer the doorbell, and make sure that your buddies are well stocked with beer and … well, now that I think of it, that pretty much covers your list of responsibilities.
To be a proper host of a Super Bowl party, you need to know the appropriate topics of conversation, as well as which topics are strictly out of bounds:
Appropriate topics of conversation:
• Comments about the lousy job of refereeing
• The over-under on the total number of penalty yards of both teams combined by half-time
• An analysis of the relative hotness of the woman in the Miller Lite commercial versus the woman in the Diet Pepsi commercial versus the Go Daddy girl
• Inquiries regarding when the pizza will be ready
• Comments about the beer, as in “Where is the beer?” or “Where’d you get this beer?” Or “I gave your parrot some beer. Check it out. I think he’s wasted.”
• Any story that begins with the phrase “I was so drunk I tried to….”
• If time permits, comments about the actual game being played
Inappropriate topics of conversation:
• How is work going?
• How is the 18-month job hunt for part-time work going?
• The over-under on how many minutes before one of the women in the kitchen breaks in and asks who’s winning – the Yankees or the Red Sox?
• How the Democrats are ruining the country
• How the Republicans are ruining the country
• Any comment that can be misconstrued as being intellectually thought-provoking or socially insightful in any way
• Any form of tearing up while watching an ad involving Budweiser Clydesdales
Part III: AFTER THE PARTY
Guys, this part should be relatively easy as well, because technically I’m fairly certain this is entirely the ladies’ responsibility, as established in the Official Rules of Super Bowl Parties in Sub-Section 37(d) of the NFL Code of Domestic Conduct, codified in 1954. But it is important to appear to offer to help your wife with the clean-up. You don’t actually have to carry through with it, of course. Just make a sincere (sounding) gesture.
For your part, I suggest picking up 3 or 4 empty beer cans and offering to dispose of the dead yak one overly festive partygoer brought for the BBQ. But before you get too far, suddenly loudly remind yourself within earshot “Oh my goodness. I forgot about that important quarterly business presentation for the Executive Committee that’s due tomorrow morning.” And then apologetically slink upstairs to your office computer to log onto ESPN.com for the post-game analysis.
There you have it – the recipe for a winning Super Bowl Party. I hope I took some of the worry out of it for you fellows out there. Well, I must wrap this up. It looks like my lovely wife is having trouble carrying the four beer kegs in from the minivan for our party. She looks like she could use some husbandly words of encouragement about lifting with her legs, not her back.