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Hey football fans,

Tell me if this has happened to you: you host a Super Bowl party, and invite your four favorite football fans, we'll call them Andy, Bonnie, Carlos, and DeShawn.  Awesome.  Carlos brings his girlfriend Elissa, who always wants to tag along but doesn't know squat about football.  Andy brings his buddy Fariq, who doesn't care for sports at all, but just broke up with his girlfriend Gisele, and is really depressed and needs to get out.  Bonnie brings her friend Hua-Ling, a known chatterbox, who she's trying to hook up with DeShawn.  DeShawn, meanwhile, has brought his fat friend Ira, who loves to show off his football knowledge, which isn't as vast as he thinks it is.

This makes for a lousy Super Bowl-watching group, politically correct as it may be.  You, Andy, Bonnie, Carlos, and DeShawn are trying to watch a championship game, and Fariq can't stop drunk-calling Gisele, Elissa keeps talking about how good the players' butts look and how she can't wait for the next commercial break, Hua-Ling keeps trying to strike up conversations with DeShawn, and Ira keeps saying profound things like, "Did you know that the Bills are the only team who's ever lost four consecutive Super Bowls?" not to mention eating all the pizza.

You can prevent such an atrocity.  One thing you can do is tell your friends that it's just going to be the five of you.  Bad idea. Andy might decide his buddy's needs are more important.  Bonnie coerces DeShawn into joining them in going to a bar for a party.  Carlos doesn't want to be there if there aren't any girls.  And you're left alone.  Another option is to post a bunch of rules about who can talk about what and when, and if you're distracting from the game, you have to leave.  Yeah, that'll make you some friends. 

Here's a better solution.  Play the Super Bowl Drinking Game.  It's guaranteed to get everyone in the room paying rapt attention to what's going on, because they have a vested interest.

Everyone chooses a team, ideally the team they're rooting for.  That gives indifferent people a vested interest in one side, which always makes the game more fun.  

You take a drink:

Every time your team loses yardage on a play (sack, run for a loss).

Every time your team commits a penalty.  Take another drink if the other team declines the penalty.

Every time your team takes a timeout.

Every time your team allows a play of ten yards or more.

Every time the other team gets a field goal, safety, or extra point.

Every time the other team returns a kickoff past the 30-yard line. Every time your team fails to return a kickoff past the 20-yard line.

Every time your team is forced to punt from inside their 20-yard line.

Every time your punt returner calls for a fair catch.  

Every time your team loses an onside kick.

 

You drink for five seconds:

Every time the other team scores a touchdown.  [this trumps the "Over 10 Yards" rule]

Every time your team commits a turnover.

Every time you lose a challenge (whether the other team challenges and succeeds, or your team challenges and fails).  

Every time your team has a kick blocked.

 

Everyone drinks:

Every time the announcers agree that the refs made a terrible call.

Every time they show a commercial that unanimously sucks.

 

Of course, you can make your own modifications, but here's why this works:  1) Everyone is forced to pick a side, and thus has someone to root for.  2) Every play, even punts, have the potential to cause drinking.  So everyone has to pay attention.  3) People who don't know a thing about football might learn by the end of the day, if they can remember it. 

So with this game, your party is a success.  Everyone had a blast.  There was food for everyone, because Ira was kept busy drinking.  Fariq had something to take his mind off of Gisele.  Hua-Ling shut up more often than usual.  Elissa picked the Giants because they have the nicest butts, and is suddenly a Giants fan.   Hua-Ling and DeShawn probably hook up afterwards.  Bonnie is happy but also jealous for her friend, and starts making out with Fariq, who calls Gisele afterwards to tell her he's over her.  And most importantly, you, Carlos, Andy, Bonnie, and DeShawn all got to enjoy the game you love.

 
January 23, 2014  03:20 AM ET

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