Forget the Oscars. Forget a silly thing like the World Series, The Masters or Valentine’s Day. There is really only one epic day on the calendar, and it is February 3.
There is a reason that an estimate audience of 750 million to one billion people around the world watch the Super Bowl. It is more than a game: it’s an event. Of the ten most-watched television programs of all time, four are Super Bowls. Are you kidding me? This is a day that football fans can rejoice over…and non-football fans can start developing football fever over.
Let’s review some fun Super Bowl facts:
- The average Super Bowl party has 17 people attending. Dang, people are super popular!
- Then again, 5 percent of people watch the Super Bowl alone. Probably either die-hard fans who can’t bear to watch with any distractions (I get it) or this guy.
- A full 1.5 million Super Bowl watchers call in sick the next day. And more than 4 million people will be late to work. All in all, it’s $850 million in “lost productivity” during Super Bowl week, between gabbing about the game and laying in bed moaning. And well worth it, I say!
- More than one billion buffalo wings will be eaten on Sunday around the world. If you really want to wow people, try these Buffalo Chicken Cupcakes from my favorite food blog, Cupcake Project.
If you still haven’t wrapped your head around the game, here are a few tidbits that will help you impress the people at your respective party, or at the water cooler while you are wasting $850 million in company time.
First off, please tell me that you know that the Baltimore Ravens and San Francisco 49ers are facing off on Super Bowl Sunday. Whew. Then use these conversation starters, and soon you’ll be the most popular gal at the game:
- You may have heard about a little thing called the Har-Bowl. That’s right, two brothers, John and Jim Harbaugh, are coaching against each other in the Super Bowl. What are the odds? Well, you can tell them that based on all of the current coaching families, about 1 in 11,175, actually. Seriously, NFL coaching is a place where nepotism runs rampant.
- Raven Terrell Suggs, owner of the super cool nickname “T-Sizzle,” is recovering from Achilles surgery and seems to have lost a step. Still, you think he could be the Ravens’ best weapon against the pistol offense. Then go on a tangent about how players are expected to bounce back from serious injuries waaaay too quickly these days, and reference Adrian Peterson and his implications on Robert Griffin III’s ability to play next season. (Side note: "pistol offense" is a relatively new scheme where a quarterback lines up closer to the line of scrimmage than a traditional “shotgun” passing formation, so he is in a position to either hand off the ball, pass or run himself. Other side note: Adrian Peterson came back from a very serious ACL tear very quickly to have a season that will likely earn him MVP honors. Now expectations are raised for other players who have that injury, which is likely a dangerous and unrealistic precedent).
- Talk about how it is kind of annoying that so many Niners fans are coming out of the woodwork now that they are winning. This is a franchise that was once dominant, and then fell to the bottom of the standings for many years. Anyone that can say they’ve stayed with them through at least three losing seasons is a true fan in my book. If you want to jump on now, that’s all well and good. But I will tell you from my personal Colts experience that it is much better to love a team in hard times and watch them during their climb, then begin that relationship when things are going well. The only way to go from here is down. Just sayin'.
- Now tell everyone that the Niners have a dominant defense with two incredible pass rushers, and a QB who can kill you with his legs. Colin Kaepernick is a mid-season replacement who looks a bit like the singer Humpty Hump and acts like a young kid playing Pop Warner. You love his attitude and his aggressive style of play, but then again Randy Moss is one of his receivers, and he is a proven dick, so you feel a bit torn about the whole thing.
All in all, you can sum up by saying that this is a great match up, and hard to call. Which is all well and good. But enough football talk…what do we eat and watch and wear?
Let’s look at a few out-of-this-world food items for Super Bowl. Besides the aforementioned cupcakes, check out Bacon Double Cheeseburger Dip, a hot dog smothered in mac and cheese , and these adorably-themed desserts that I am not crafty enough to make in million years but would be happy to chow down on.
Commercials are all the buzz, and you don’t need me to tell you that an ad that runs on the Big Game is almost a guarantee of brand recognition. Check out a company called Gildan. If you haven’t heard of it, you will after Feb. 3. Mercedes has taken a page out of Marketing 101 and hired super-hot (and ex-NFL quarterback Mark Sanchez’ girlfriend) Kate Upton to sell sex, I mean cars. Go Daddy will provide the usual girl with big boobs and a wind tunnel, and some sort of Pistachio commission ad with Psy doing Gangnam Style is sure to be my 5-year-old’s favorite. Although it may seem nutty, there is a reason advertisers pay $4 million for a 30-second spot. No, not a typo. $4 million. 30 seconds. So pay attention.
And what to wear? What to wear? Is there a way to support your team without a knee-length jersey and a Giants trucker hat? The NFL is actually making some cute ladies wear these days, and you can also look to celebs like Dan Marino and Alyssa Milano for more hip looks. There is no excuse not to stock up on cool sports wear. And I gotta be honest: hubby and I have matching Colts pajama pants and we crack up when we wear them together.
Yet another reason why football can bring you closer to your man, and closer to anyone else who loves football, which is about half the population.
So get excited. Use the Super Bowl, and all of its decadent fashion, food and branding-fests, to ignite your passion for the game. Feb. 4 is a depressing day for us football fanatics, but I will be back soon to start talking about our next season, so be ready!