To a kid who’s primary notion of a punter was what was used to kick people out of AOL chatrooms, suddenly being surrounded by people who lived and breathed football was unnerving.
At first, I simply mirrored others: cheering when others cheered, shouting obscenities when everyone else did. Mimicry only got me so far, but in the 16 years since then I’ve managed to memorize a few trivial factoids that at the very least have served as a distraction from my total lack of interest.
The Basic Super Bowl Facts You Should Know
The Green Bay Packers played in, and won the first two Super Bowls, which is why the winning team receives a statue named after the legendary coach Vince Lombardi.
The Pittsburgh Steelers hold the title as both the team with the most Super Bowl wins (6) and the most Super Bowl appearances (8). They’re followed by the Denver Cowboys, having won 5 out of their 8 Super Bowl games.
The Minnesota Vikings and The Buffalo Bills are tied for the title of team with the most Super Bowl appearances without a single victory, both having lost all four of their Championship games.
Predicting The Outcome
In 30 out of the last 44 (update for last year) Super Bowls, the first team to score won the game.
In 38 out of the last 44 games, the team leading at the end of the third quarter won the game.
Most betting pools require wagers to be placed in advance. But, armed with these two facts, you’ll at least be able to begin to look like you know what’s going on.
Halftime Shows Are Lame But Culturally Significant
Never in the history of the event has your favorite band ever played at the halftime show. The band/musician chosen is invariably one that your nieces and nephews and grandparents alike will recognize, regardless of whether or not they actually enjoy them. But because it’s the main distraction during the most-viewed television event of the year, it’s bound to become a fixture in the next week’s water-cooler talk, and thus you’ll be expected to have seen it.
This year is no exception, with your mom’s college roommate Madonna taking center stage. Will her voice crack? Will she trip? Will her top come off? Will her hair start on fire? One can only hope.
I don’t even need to tell you about the exorbitant amounts of money being thrown at these advertising blockbusters. These ads might be the best entertainment you get during the Big Game, so you might as well take notice.
Eat Shitty Food and Get Drunk
In all honesty, who cares how well you know your feetballs? Something like 40% of all people attending Super Bowl parties aren’t even fans anyway. So do what comes naturally and feed your vices. If there isn’t an obscene display of saturated fats and enough alcohol to pickle a horse, then you need to ask yourself what you’re doing there in the first place.
You’ll know you’re at “the right” Super Bowl party if you’re able to keep your face stuffed full of nachos and your speech slurred to a point of unintelligibility. After all, those who actually know the game would probably prefer that you keep your pedestrian comments to yourself. Come Monday you can go back to not caring about football.
Skip The Party and Fake It
Depending on how many fucks you’re prone to give, you might choose to do something more productive on Sunday, like celebrating World Nutella Day. In that case, you can always search Youtube and Twitter for “Super Bowl XLVI” later and scan the results for relevant talking points on everything from the half-time show, to the commercials, to the most memorable plays. Given the setup of social media platforms, the shit everyone’s talking about will float to the top, allowing you to more or less get the gist of it all at a glance. But lets be honest, you’ll be too busy posting about Nutella on Tumblr all day, as will I.