th_008By: Chrysa Smith

I opened my eyes, turned on the television and saw the usual Sunday morning news about the upcoming NFL Eagles game (well, this was before they crapped out). But it wasn’t just a report on the time, the opponent, the stats. It was an interview with several of the hundreds of men; yes grown men, who pack up their kitchens, their housing, their football gear, their heating elements, hot tub (yes, hot tub!) and schlep on down to the stadium about a half day in advance of the game.  They had the expected tents with side panels, chairs and grills. They were dressed from head to toe in Eagle gear. They had their BBQ grills. They had their space heaters. They had their coolers. And they were cooking bacon and egg breakfast sandwiches, which would be followed by a grilled chicken entree for lunch, and naturally, lots of beer.

OK, after I laughed at the sheer magnitude of the event, I marveled at the amount of work that had to go into setting up the festivities of the morning. So naturally, it begged the question:  How do these men, who must obviously plan, shop, pack and clean up, get through the rest of the week when they can’t find their keys, wallet, coats? How do clothes wind up on the floor, cups stacked on the counter, closets left open, when in a parking lot, they can clean up every morsel of debris they’ve accumulated in several hours? How do they plan their menus and hit the grocery store, when for those meals that we ladies are gone, they end up ordering pizza, Chinese or ribs?  How do they get all of this stuff loaded into the vehicle, when packing for a vacation seems like an afterthought, or a chore?

You know the drill ladies. There’s nothing like desire to kick start some energy. A promise of romance? The room gets cleaned up. A promise of romance? Laundry is done and folded. A promise of romance? Dishes are done and lights are dimmed. But there’s more than desire here. Because let’s face it. If we told our guy that we wanted to go along for the tailgating and then get romantic when we get home, their brainwaves would be short-circuiting like a flock of geese flying into the power grid. It’s a guy thing–a bonding that goes beyond all logic to us very logically thinking women.

So, how exactly would it look like in reverse? What if we were asked to set up a  ‘teepee’ outside of the local stadium?

First, what are the team colors? We’ll get tableware that matches. How many folks will be eating? OK, well with that number, we’re better off ordering some lasagna from the local market that feeds over 20. With a big salad and some fresh Italian Sesame Semolina bread, and Italian cookies, that’ll take care of the food. And with the store’s newest policy, they’ll deliver it to us right there in the parking lot. We’ll pick up a case of water on our way down, which will work for everyone. Now I’ll put on my thermal layers, feed the dogs, drop off the kids at my mom’s house and be out the door in a flash! Oh, and pack some magazines for the car. No one in their right mind will sit out in the cold for hours when there’s a nice warm car.

The whole thing would be mentally ordered, physically ordered and organized and arranged so to have the least stuff to drag, the least inconvenience to encounter. Yep. We keep our worlds and theirs running smoothly, warmly, snugly–so they can be guys at least one day a week. It’s funny, but I’ll take it. It beats sitting in a cold stadium chugging cold drinks in mid-winter. Yep. I’ll continue to rule my world.


*disclaimer–I’d like to just say that my husband doesn’t tailgate and does regularly help with laundry and kitchen chores. Just saying, he may be a tv zombie on Sundays, but for most days, I’ll keep him. That doesn’t exclude him from being energized with the promise of romance, or being a total ditz regarding where wallets, keys, jackets and other items are. It’s fun watching men, isn’t it?