You’ve been waiting all year, and the time is finally here: football season has arrived. Yes, America’s greatest game gets going right about now, and you know what that means: beer, buddies, and good times. Nothing beats a Sunday out with good friends, having a couple afternoon beers, and getting rowdy cheering for your favorite team.
And, of course, the football get-together to end all football get-togethers is the tailgate party. What could be better? Grilling out in a lot full of fellow football fanatics, talking sports and taking drinks, etc. It all adds up to good times and great memories. Remember, though, that drinking in public with automobiles in tow can take its toll on the unprepared fan. The trick is to make it through the game and the ride home. Here are some simple tips to take care during your tailgate party.
Don’t Drink Too Much
We’ll start with the basics. Yes, you already know this but it can never be repeated too often: don’t drink to excess. There are just so many things that can go wrong. As a tailgater, you’ll be in a crowded public space surrounded by hyped up football fans who are also drinking and eating and arguing about the game. Here are few things to keep in mind about the dangers tailgate intoxication.
Drinking can get you into a fight. Everyone’s pumped up, everyone’s got strong feelings about the game, and everyone’s drinking. What could go wrong? Pretty much everything. Tensions can mount and erupt without warning. That offhand comment about the opposing team’s quarterback could rub some bozo the wrong way and land you in a world of hurt. Avoid too much booze to keep the peace.
Drinking too much makes driving dangerous and illegal. Yes, it’s a tailgate party; you’re supposed to drink in the parking lot. Still, remember that you or one of your buddies will need to drive home. At a certain point, drinking and driving is a criminal act. More than that, it’s incredibly dangerous, causing countless car crashes and killing people constantly. Bring along a non-drinking friend if you need to, or simply stay sober. Drinking to excess will make your Monday worse than it needs to be, too.
Drinking makes everything hard. You could throw up and get booted from the game, you could embarrass yourself, you could hurt yourself falling down. Drinking even makes being a pedestrian dangerous.
Don’t wing it. A tailgate party is serious fun. Don’t blow it by just showing up and assuming everything will work itself out without you guiding things. At the grocery store, grab the good grilling food. Look for low-alcohol beers at the liquor store. Above all, remember that drunk driving is something to avoid at all costs. There are so many ways to avoid the need to drive drunk these days that you don’t have an excuse. Cabs, Uber, sober friends, buses, etc. Society doesn’t want you driving drunk and is going to do everything in its power to help you avoid doing so. Take the hint. Stay safe. Enjoy the game.