It’s Super Bowl weekend, which means I’m getting ready to watch a team I hate (the New England Patriots) face a team I care nothing about (the Philadelphia Eagles) in a game that I will have on TV out of moral obligation but, frankly, have little interest in.
But that’s why there are Super Bowl parties, right?
These gatherings are a staple for football fans and non-fans alike, an all-American celebration that sees people come together in living rooms for food, drink and fellowship.
And being a man of sophistication, I have not only participated in such parties, but helped plan them.
Let’s be honest, though … too many of these events are predictable.
Cooler of beer?
Chips and salsa?
That’s all well and good, but boring.
Why not shake things up?
In that spirit, here are some ideas to help spice up your Super Bowl party, regardless of whether or not you cheer for the Eagles or those other bastards:
FOODS SHOULD BE FESTIVE
You can continue the tradition of sausage balls, pigs-in-blankets and chips and salsa, but dress them up and give them festive names.
Imagine the look on your guests’ faces when they see a spread of pork testicles, swine-in-fitted sheets and deep-fried tortilla wedges and tomato puke.
They’ll be eating the same food they normally eat, but it’ll have a whole new attitude.
Of course you can also go way outside the box.
One year, instead of going to all the trouble of preparing foods, I kept it simple.
I just placed eight packs of frozen wieners and a jar of mayonnaise on the table and told guest to help themselves.
You’d be surprised how many did.
Back during my drinking days, I just assumed stocking a cooler full of beer was sufficient for any Super Bowl party. And if – heaven forbid – someone was a teetotaler, I’d just direct them to the water faucet.
But times have changed.
Some people would rather not drink beer at parties, Super Bowl or otherwise.
Again, this is a chance to be bold.
Why not buy a kiddie pool and fill it with pure grain alcohol?
Sure, Everclear may be considered a “neutral spirit,” but your guests will be shifting into overdrive quickly as they belly up to the pool to get their drink on.
Want to try an even more innovative beverage option?
The nighttime, sniffling, sneezing, aching, coughing, stuffy-head, fever, so-you-can-rest medicine comes with its own plastic shot glass, which leads me to believe its makers are well aware it can be used for an entirely different purpose.
And if you’re on a budget, you can get the store brand knockoffs which basically have the same effect.
If you go this route, chances are good your guests will be asleep by the second half, but it probably won’t matter as by then Bill Belichick will have made some unholy bargain with Satan to ensure that the Patriots win their 12th Super Bowl in the last 10 years.
PREGAME FUN AND GAMES
Remember playing pin the tail on the donkey and hitting a candy-filled piñata?
And trying to get adults to play those games in the leadup to the Super Bowl is pointless.
Have fun! Be creative!
I’ve always thought it would be cool to set up a miniature boxing ring in the living room and have guests square off in a bare knuckle brawl that lasts until one fighter is knocked unconscious.
Divisions could be based on weight, sex, age – whatever.
The gifts you choose to award the winners are up to you, of course, but sometimes a losers’ consolation prize is best.
Who doesn’t want to ride in an ambulance?
In the interest of full disclosure, I have no party plans at all on Sunday.
My wife, who has less interest in sports than any human being who has ever lived, will be reading.
I’ll be watching alone, snacking on healthy foods because my body is a temple and I damn near burned it down for the first 45 years of my life.
But just because I’m not in the party mood doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be, and hopefully I’ve given you enough tips to make sure this really is a Super Sunday.
So eat, drink and knock the crap out of somebody in your living room.
It’s the American way.