Every year, when the Super Bowl comes around and people ask which team I’m rooting for, I almost never have an answer. Not since 1988 have I had a dog in that fight. Every few years I find myself at a Super Bowl party, where I have to feign enthusiasm about a particular team.
Inside I am thinking: “I’m just in it for the dip.”
I like a good Super Bowl party as much as the next person, but for different reasons. I really go for the food. And the beer. At least I did before my doctor cut off all sources of fun.
I love dip—onion dip, artichoke dip, spinach dip, bean dip, seven-layer dip, guacamole, chili con queso, salsa and even that big bowl of bleu cheese dressing, with or without the spicy wings for which it’s intended. I love Fritos, Doritos, Tostitos and Cheetos. Ah, then there’s the chili, beloved bowl of Heaven. With or without beans (preferably with), white or red, hot or mild, preferably hiding under an obscenely thick blanket of shredded cheddar and sour cream.
If I could plant myself in the corner and have my own chili-and-dip-off, I’d be content. Unfortunately, because I know so little about football (the Super Bowl is football, isn’t it?), I dread that inevitable moment when the person next to me looks away for a sec, or returns from the bathroom, just as a big play is made and everyone is yelling. Then that person turns to me and asks, “What just happened?” That’s when I have no choice but to stuff 27 chips in my mouth and make the sorry-my-mouth-is-full hand gesture. Then I head to the bathroom.
Often I’m happy to stay home and work a crossword puzzle with the game on in the background, and usually I fall asleep about halftime. That historic second during Super Bowl XXXVIII when Justin Timberlake exposed Janet Jackson’s bare tee-tees? Slept right through it.
This year I am braving a party once again. A really big Super Bowl party. The invitation seemed enticing, even though I will know only one of about 100 people who will be there. Maybe I’ll go as Gail from Green Bay and hide beneath a big cheese head. As long as I can still get to the dip.
Or maybe I’ll meet some fellow geeks with whom to debate the merits of switching from Roman to Arabic numerals.