So, you don't watch football. (We won't tell.) But tomorrow you're going to a Super Bowl party, because everyone is, and you're going to be expected to keep up with the party conversation. In the interest of helping you save face in front of your friends, we've compiled a field guide for everything you might encounter in conversations at your Super Bowl party.
So, the really basic stuff. The two teams playing are the Baltimore Ravens and the San Francisco 49ers.
The really, really basic stuff. Oh, you mean you don't even know what the rules are? Hahaha. Thankfully the NFL is prepared for situations like this. If you need it, catch up here. Moving on...
Colin Kaepernick is the San Francisco starting quarterback, unless he gets taken out of the game for Alex Smith. The 49ers have a quarterback controversy most teams would kill for. They have two very talented quarterbacks. Smith was the starter at the beginning of the season, but after a rocky performance and an injury Kaepernick won the job. Smith is expected to demand a trade at the end of this season. The thing is, both are very good.
Colin Kaepernick has a pet tortoise. His name is Sammy, he is huge, and the Wall Street Journal profiled him.
No matter what, this is Ray Lewis' last game in the NFL. At the end of the game, no matter who wins, Ravens linebacker Ray Lewis is retiring. Lewis already has a Super Bowl ring, but he's been the face of the franchise for the last decade or so. He is the Baltimore Ravens. Another Ravens veteran, safety Ed Reed, will likely retire at the end of this season, too. (Full disclosure: Ed Reed is one of our favorite players and this writer will likely shed tears if and when he does decide to hang 'em up.)
The road to Ray Lewis' retirement party included bringing up his criminal past... Wes Welker's wife brought up Lewis' acquittal on murder charges.
...and allegations he's been using deer antlers as performance enhancing drugs. Yes, seriously. Apparently he sprays concentrated deer antler formula under his tongue.
Joe Flacco is the Ravens' starting quarterback, and he is very good. He is also very underrated and no one believes he can get the job done.
The game is in New Orleans this year. And New Orleans fans hate NFL commissioner Roger Goodell with a fiery, burning passion. They will boo him.
The commercials are sort of boring so far. And the Internet ruins everything because half of them are already available. That Go Daddy one with the kid and the kissing is gross, but not in the normal Go Daddy way, because it is also brilliant. (We'll be live-blogging the ads on Sunday night, and hopefully they'll get better.)
There was no chicken-wing apocalypse this year. Usually there's a "shortage" in January, as the chicken-wing lobby scares you into buying more than you need. Not this year, though.
The only kind of wing you should be eating is "Buffalo." Tell your honey garlic loving friends to stay home.
Some kids from Sandy Hook Elementary will likely appear at some point. It will be poignant, but awkward. Do not try and turn this into a conversation about gun control. You will regret it. Instead, start debating your favorite chip flavors. (Sour Cream and Onion is the flavor preferred by fascists and treasonous fools.)
One of the CBS commentators just got busted for paying millions of dollars to cover up a love child. The laces were in, Marino. They were in!
Don't be the person who brings up that there's only 11 minutes of actual football being played. With play selection taking up so much time, there's not a lot of actual sport on Super Sunday. So don't be that guy. Your friends will hate you.
No, Tom Brady is not playing. He's probably off with his super model wife in their house that is big enough to actually have a moat. Tom Brady lives behind a moat.
No, Rob Gronkowski is not playing. But he is partying in New Orleans without a shirt on.
Madden, the football video game, might change its name this year. Your college bro friends, or your sort-of grown up bro friends' younger brothers, will debate the merits of this idea for approximately three hours.
Beyoncé is performing at halftime, and Destiny's Child will (probably) have a surprise reunion. It's quite an improvement over the geriatrics from the last few years. At some point Destiny's Child will perform together for the first time since the last time it happened in your dreams.
More people will watch Beyoncé's performance than the game itself. More people watched Madonna last year than the actual game. This is Bey. Her ratings will be cray.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.