Every year, around the beginning of February, I do an interesting cultural experiment – I go to a Super Bowl party. And this year was no different. Each year, I try to analyze a different version of the phenomenon that is professional football. This year, as I was stuffing my face with guacamole and pizza, I realized something – I needed a drink. After a refreshing swig of soda, I came to another conclusion: All of the food served at Super Bowl parties was carefully selected to fill a certain role.
Buffalo Wings: Wings are the optimal Super Bowl snack if you’re a diehard football fan because keeps your friends and loved ones at bay as you focus on the game. Everything about eating wings is a deterrent. The very stance needed to eat wings while sitting – a neanderthal-esque hunch that says, “keep away from my prey or I’ll club you” – would be enough to scare away most people. However, wings go even further to prevent distractions. The color and consistency of wing residue makes the eater look like he or she just helped brutally murder and devour Garfield the cat. Finally, I think wing sauce was literally designed to make bad breath. It tastes like a combination of ketchup, vinegar, garlic and onions, creating breath that transition your blissful solitude during the game into extremely loneliness later in the week.
Pizza: Pizza is a food that can greatly benefit the host of the party, if they know how to capitalize on a potentially profitable situation. If you ever host a Super Bowl party follow these easy instructions: First, ask everyone else to bring the side dishes (wings, beer, chips, etc.) and say that you will take care of the pizza. Now, here’s the key: don’t order any pizza. As the minutes turn into hours, continuously look at the clock and make remarks like “sorry guys, I guess the pizza shop is really backed up tonight,” or “it must be a busy night for the pizzeria!” Eventually, go into the other room and pretend to call and yell at the pizzeria owner then cancel the order. At this point, everyone (including you) is probably already half-full and fully drunk, so you’re in the clear. If you see anyone start to approach you to ask about ordering more pizza, begin eating wings (see “Buffalo Wings” above).
Chips and Dip: Chips and dip are a great food for the early birds to the party. The chips are generally situated on the coffee table directly in line with the TV. People who get to the party early generally claim would be stupid not to complete the straight line from seat to chips to TV – it’s simple geometry. I have also noticed that distance from the chips directly correlates to inconvenience of the seat for several reasons. Most obviously, the seats further from the chips are likely to get constantly blocked by chip-grabbers. It’s also a scientific fact that vision blocking due to chip grabbing is more likely to occur during funnier commercials. Also, seats further from the chips are more at risk of having dip dripped on them. Imagine this perfect storm of a situation: the asshole sitting next to you (probably a Patriots fan) grabs a chip with heaping pile of homemade extra-staining salsa just as the funniest commercial of the night airs. The commercial reaches its punch line as the chip hand is right in front of your $88 white NFL jersey. The odds of dodging the three-ounce bullet hurtling towards your chest are about as high as the Eagles reaching the playoffs within the next 5 years.