“ARE YOU READY for SOME FOOTBALL?” That phrase, put to music by Hank Williams Jr. years ago, set
There are barbecue smokers
bring as sundry lawn games, check-
so massive they require their own
ers and various outdoor diversions. Others resort to good old fashioned
in motion a series of productions
trailer hitches (you know who you
for the sport that has become
are). Are we smoking entire sides of
people watching. Though, between
a spectacle (and the norm) for
beef or what? Those quantities may
you and me, here’s a word to the
networks across the country. It’s
be in order if the crowds around
wise. While you may not feel like
not just a game anymore. It’s an
many tents are indicative of how
you are exhibiting behavior worthy
many are eating there. Appetites
of watching, you just might be
are hearty and voracious. And they
game-day amusement for the group
all agree, everything tastes better
around the corner.
As far as I can tell, singing, football and television first were coupled on ABC’S MONDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL in
when cooked over an open flame —
the mid-1970s. HOWARD COSELL (love
especially 600 pounds of cow.
him or hate him) was the main talent. His quirky personality, sometimes
Your proximity to the grill is in direct proportion to the month.
Lastly, the technology is astounding. Just because fans are in the parking lot does not mean they have to miss their second-favorite
strange antics and distinct manner
November, real close. September,
team (or team they love to hate) play.
of speaking was a constant from
not so much. If you can think of
There are televisions of all shapes,
play-by-play to the halftime high-
it, it’s fair game to be grilled, fried,
sizes and price points. No screen is
lights. Frank Gifford provided the
skewered or sautéed.
too big for tailgating.
expert analysis. Don Meredith was the singer. Playing the “Aw shucks, good ‘ole
The table fare is only half the
And if they’re going to the trouble
issue. The other is the decor. If you
of toting the television, they typically
are not a frequent tailgater, you
go all-in and bust out the portable
boy” role, Don was genuinely funny.
may be asking, “YOU DECORATE YOUR
satellite dishes. In fact, there are
His humor was never forced, but
enough signals being emitted and
revealed itself in a flowing, honest
Of course! Many spaces have
received, I’m sometimes fearful of
manner that made audiences feel
an ensemble that would make a
interfering with aircraft transmission
he was a long-lost friend from high
furniture store salivate. There are
at nearby Stillwater Airport.
school. When Don sang, “Turn out
couches, tables, chairs, lamps, rugs
the lights, the party’s over,” there
and home furnishings of all shapes,
would be time left on the clock, but
sizes and … well, just the one color.
through the area. Get some tailgate
the outcome of the game had been
Someone call Southern Living.
grub. Find a screen and have a seat.
Most of the spreads are picture
Put your feet up. Many tailgates
decided. When OSU fans mention being ready for some football, they are usually talking about tailgating,
perfect. Then again, others look like
have enough monitors and satellites
something I’d throw out there.
to make NASA … orange with envy.
But even then, relaxing on the
which seems to be a spectacle all its
couch-away-from-home is not
own. You can see it all in the parking
enough. There has to be pre-game
lots, this commotion created by the
entertainment, too. Some tailgaters
Don’t believe me? Get to the game early and make a pass
GO POKES! KYLE WRAY ASSOCIATE VICE PRESIDENT ENROLLMENT MANAGEMENT & MARKETING