As I looked around the sports bar tonight, I realized I was the only woman there who wasn’t wearing an apron. I’m no sports fanatic, but I would like to think the men don’t hate it when I come along. Many women have no idea how to watch football without being annoying. There are ups (at one point tonight I considered naming our unborn daughter “Miami”) and there are downs where you best not say, “it’s OK.” Here are some tips I’ve learned over the last four (losing) seasons of Miami Dolphins football.
1. Nobody cheers for getting the extra point.
2. Never profess to being a fan of any team other than your man’s. Unless you are a part owner and can name every player and corresponding jersey number on the starting lineup and second string, you are immaturely pissing him off.
3. Don’t speak to him for three (football) minutes after the other team scores.
4. You can get in someone’s face at the bar in cases where some asshole warrants it. Just make sure it’s a guy who would never hit a girl, nor get your husband involved.
5. Don’t ask questions. Watch and learn.
6. Never say jerseys (even throwbacks) look cute. Football is rough and tumble. I’m also firmly against pink jerseys. There is no NFL team with a team color of pink.
7. If you’re watching at home, get him another beer or whatever it is he asks for. These are your possessions in jeopardy; don’t gamble.
8. Only a select few people in the world are “true fans” and your man is one of them.
9. You can gawk at cheerleaders together. That is completely acceptable and the guys like to feel unperverted for staring.
10. Touchdowns win games. Not field goals. Don’t cheer for settling for three. Unless, of course, your team is undefeated in which case you can throw out these rules and do whatever you want.
11. Don’t ever bring up the team’s record unless the first number is greater than the second.
12. Hate every other team in his division. Actually, hate every team except his own.
There are so many more, but these should get you through your first game together. And the first game you watch with a sports fanatic could very well make or break your relationship. This is not trivial. Football is life.