Yee-hah, it’s footballing time! The two teams duking it out for the Super Bowl trophy this year are the Boston Shenanigans and the Houston Fannypacks. The Shenanigans are currently the favourites, despite half their players being unable to play, having contracted acute cooties from contaminated meatloaf gumbo-catsup Popsicles bought at a biker-run 7/11 in Reno, following the team’s triumphant 400-deuce win over the St Louis Douches. Game on!
Alternatively: this year’s Super Bowl is being contested by the no-nonsense, highly decorated Denver Broncos and perky upstarts the Carolina Panthers. The Broncos specialise in unyielding defence, while the Panthers are all-action underdogs that can’t stop winning. It’s sort of like a Champions League final between Bayern Munich and Leicester.
The Shenanigans’ secret weapon is Roy “Lil Biggie” Jafondle. At 7ft 3in and 550lbs he’s the relative shrimp of the team, but what he lacks in size he makes up for in sheer speed: “Boy, when Jafonda git ta steppin’ real ornery he just about as giddy-up as a sneezin’ gator!” observed Shenanigans coach Buzz Nuttrack recently. Brad Joshbradchin, meanwhile, is the man to watch for Fannypacks, provided he’s paroled in time – he’s currently facing 25-to-life on felony charges of grand jaywalk auto and aggravated sexual larceny of a motor vehicle within city limits.
Alternatively: for Denver, a steely veteran quarterback frequently referred to as “the greatest of all time”: Peyton Manning. On the opposite side a guy 13 years his junior – the electrifying, trash-talking, all-dancing Cam Newton. Manning is special in that he doesn’t rely on a co-ordinator in his ear-piece telling him what plays to make. He decides himself. Newton meanwhile, has a throw like a laser-guided missile.
Many Brits claim to find the rules arcane and baffling – but the basics are simple. The aim of the game is to penetrate deep into the opposition’s six eight-zones, either by side-crabbing the ball into the quarter-stop; by having more than 23 of your 36 field-side players stop short, mid-short or short-long; or by catching then throwing then catching then hiding then kicking the ball into the linegoal, thereby reversing play and forcing the opposition’s quarter-, third- and half-backs to rescind an arbitrary number of yards. 2016 is a leap year, however, so many rules are inverted for Super Bowl 50. You’ll soon pick up what’s going on.
Alternatively: if you’re going to take in one thing in let it be this: at any one time, one team is attacking and one team is defending. The attacking team have four attempts to get the ball into the other team’s end-zone. If they fail to do this then the roles swap around. The attacking team become the defending team and vice-versa.
As with the Oscars, the deeper you get into a Super Bowl broadcast, the further away the end seems. But be strong! Our Transatlantic cousins battle through by doggedly consuming bowl after bowl of what’s known as Super Bowl Sunday Big Boy Supper Sludge – a huge crock-pot filled with grits, corn dogs, chilli dogs, government cheese, Lucky Charms, s’mores, Cheetos, Reuben sandwiches, cheesesteaks, buffalo wings and Tex-Mex pancake ribs, swirling in a sweet, sweet sauce of jelly (meaning jam), Jell-o (meaning jelly) and caramel-bacon Sarsaparilla. Grab a deli spork and some Pepto-Bismol, get your caboose comfy on the John – and let’s Super Bowl!
Alternatively: we’d recommend stocking up on thematically appropriate snack food at the American Food Store in Holland Park. Want authentic atmosphere? Balthazar in Covent Garden are screening the whole thing live.
Words: Joe Madden
An international festival of light
Dinner in a decommissioned 1967 underground carriage
Half-price brunch and a HUGE fried chicken burger