Can someone please tell me why the Super Bowl is held so late on a Sunday night? Is it due in any part to heavy lobbying by Budweiser?
Sunday games are always at 1 or 4 o'clock, Eastern Standard Time. At least, as far as I know or need to know. Or care to know.
But the National Football League has succeeded in turning the Super Bowl into a nationwide celebration. It's to the point where you're eyed suspiciously if you say you have any other plans than to be glued to your set on Super Sunday. So why does the party start so late??
Certainly, I'm not against a party. Who doesn't like stuffing their face with chips & salsa, chips & dip, chips & chili, chips & cupcake icing? (Let's face it: by the end of the day, the real dip is all gone, and so is all judgment.)
And that's just part of the problem with holding the Big Game hostage until 6:30 p.m., EST. People start the partying at about 2 in the afternoon. By 3:30, they're half in the bag. By 4, they're done with snacks and moving on to burgers, ribs, chorizo nachos, Buffalo chicken pizza, duck chili, the neighbor's cat.
Cut to 6:30: Game Time.
Party Goer #1: "I think I'm gonna barf. Whose idea was it to eat chips and icing, anyway?! And where's Fluffy?"
Party Goer #2: "I'm wrecked. Whose idea was it make Jager margaritas?"
Party Goer #3: "I'm in full hangover mode so everybody shut up. Zzzzzzz...."
If kids are in tow, this is about when they've had enough of the Super festivities and they're crying, fighting or entering their fifth hour of embezzling food and soda contraband, right under the unwatchful eyes of their disengaged parents.
Parent #1: "How many cookies has Susie eaten today? Did she even eat real food?!"
Parent #2: "Who cares! I'm losing my buzz, don't make it worse. Can't somebody fix the tap on this keg?!"
By half-time, if the kids aren't passed out with food all over their faces, clothes and hair, they're begging for a sleepover.
Parent: "You have school tomorrow. No sleepovers."
Kid: "School?! I'm not going to school! Today's the Super Bowl. This is like Christmas. You don't go to school the day after Christmas! I want a sleepov..."
Parent: "Get in the car! Party's over!"
Kid: "What?! Waahhh. I hate you! I hate this house and everybody in it! Waaaah."
A scene like this usually ends up with observers muttering, "I may be bloated and bombed right now, but at least I don't have to sober up for that crap...."
And for most everyone (though not me, thanks to my teetotaler husband), halftime marks the moment when people start questioning themselves:
"Should we stay or should we go?"
"Am I close to winning the pool?"
"Can I even sober up in the next half hour?"
See, for East Coast fans, the game doesn't end until around 10 at night. And for some, the festivities will go much later this year -- depending on whether it's New York or New England that takes home the trophy.
Now, if the Super Bowl were on a "Super Saturday," all this would be different. People could pass out on the floor and stay there. Or, as a favor to the host, start sobering up at 9, drinking coffee at 10 and driving home at 2 a.m. They could deal with the headache and salt overload all day on Sunday, and arrive to work Monday. Still half-bloated. But at least they'd BE there, possibly in a productive state of mind.
And are there any stats on how many kids bail on school because they've been forced to stay at their uncle's party waaay too late for reasons beyond their control? Test scores everywhere are at risk!
I say enough! For the good of this country, this is an issue that needs to be addressed by the NFL, the presidential candidates and party people throughout these United States of America.