All this Super Bowl talk is making me hungry.
With that said, I think it's about time to start my own Super Bowl tradition. I'm staying away from the wings. Pizza. Cheese. Hot Dogs. Burgers. You get the idea.
So what's left?
I'm glad you asked. There is nothing I'd rather shovel into my mouth during the big game than a giant plate of spaghetti and meatballs. Before you run off and steal my new annual dish, though, allow me to analytically break down why the tasty Italian treat is perfect for Super Bowl XLIV.
The Plate: Jim Caldwell and Sean Payton
At this point, the two head coaches can't do much else but keep you from making a mess (like a plate!). They navigated their teams to the two best regular seasons and, deservedly so, are now the only two left standing. Caldwell and Payton have to be careful though, the two are both in their first Super Bowls, and between the Media, the Appearances, and the Parties, it's up to them to make sure no one spills off the plate. The advantage goes to Payton, though. I think it's safe to say they party a little harder in NOLA than Indianapolis.
The Fork: Drew Brees, QB, Colts
Brees has shown more than ever this year he has the ability to stick it to a team (4,388 yds, 34 TDs) and spin them around in circles. But as any gourmand knows, every once in a while the spaghetti falls off the utensil (see Dallas, Tampa Bay). The Saints put up 30 or more points in 9 of their first 13 games this year, and have done the same in both their post-season games, but if any team can dull down Brees' sharp points, it's Indy.
The Meatball: Peyton Manning, QB, Colts
1 pound ground beef
1/2 pound ground veal
1/2 pound ground pork
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 laser rocket arm
4 MVP trophies
1 cup freshly grated Romano cheese
1 1/2 tablespoons chopped Italian flat leaf parsley
Just like the tasty sphere, Manning has everything you need, all mushed together. The Colts QB (4,500 yds, 33 TDs) is by far the most well-rounded . Manning put up over 4,000 yards for the 10th time in his 12 year career, and took home his fourth MVP trophy. And we all know Manning has a little bit of cheese in him.
The Sauce: The Officials
This game is just as big for the officials as it is for the players, so you can bet they'll be on top of everything. Their goal is to make sure no flag goes unthrown. Not unlike the players, the zebras might be a bit anxious and over-officiate. Let's hope there's the right amount of sauce and not so much that it takes over the entire meal.
The Napkin: The Television Coverage
You can count on someone making a mistake during the Super Bowl. An interception, a fumble, a bad snap, you name it. That's where CBS comes in as the cloth napkin.
"Let's face it, you can't really hide the fact you spilled, so we're gonna wipe and wipe and wipe (replay and replay and replay), and we'll all forget about it in ten minutes when someone else spills. Unless your wearing white. That doesn't come out."
Yup. If it's a REALLY bad mistake, that's gonna get replayed year after year. Sorry in advance.
The Spaghetti: The Fans
The most important part of the entire dish. Without it, you have meatloaf. And who likes meatloaf.
Now it's important that you understand not to overdo it. If you overcook the noodles, they'll be mushy. They're still edible, but it's not enjoyable for everyone else. So wear your beads, Big John, but don't remind us how you EARNED those beads. At least wait til after the game.
Undercooked is even worse. It's nearly inedible. This refers to the non-sports fans who end up at the party anyways, and typically chime in with a, "Did you guys see SNL last night?" right as the Colts are going for it on fourth down.
What we're looking for is al dente. The perfect noodle. The simple clap after a first quarter field goal, and the occasional manly remark when they show the cheerleaders. Rules you can live by.
I know what you're thinking: The similarities are eerie. Or, Tom is crazy. I'll be fine with either.
So there you have it. Let's call this your recipe for Super Bowl Party success.