Apologies to my international readers, who (for reasons I don’t understand) are almost all in Australia. In the States, we have this game called “football,” but it’s not the football you’re thinking of. In American Football, male players try to run a strangely-shaped ball from one side of the field to the other, while all the players smash each other up. There’s also a lot of standing around.
Contemporary American Football won’t be around forever, as the forces of bubble-wrap parenting collide with new data on brain injuries. Perhaps the game will become more gentle (probably not), or shortened, or otherwise changed until all that’s left on Super Bowl Sunday are the commercials and the halftime show.
But you know what will never go away? SNACKS.
I’ve attended Super Bowl parties every year of my adult life, just for the snacks: piles of orange, crunchy, salty, gooey food; food I would never touch 364 days of the year. To me, Super Bowl Sunday is about celebrating the sodium, the grease, the sugar and spice of life. It is the Day of the Snack, washed down with ice-cold beer.
Last year, I decided to cut out the middleman and host a Superbowl party that wasn’t about football. To my surprise, our apartment was wall-to-wall with snack-loving friends eating processed cheese and chips every shade of orange the food scientists could dream of. Two kinds of pigs-in-a-blanket (both vegan and animal-based). And the dips! Six.. seven …EIGHT layers! Layers you never even heard of. And don’t even get me started on the flavors of the Doritos!*
The next morning, the apartment was covered in a thin layer of orange dust. I found sausages in the kids’ play kitchen, and smears of bright orange cheese product under the rug.
And we’re doing it all again this Sunday. But this year, I want to make it more interactive (and let’s be honest, I want to motivate everyone else to bring food).
We will reward superior snack-making efforts in three categories:
♥ Most Unhealthy Snack
♥ Orangest Snack
♥ Best Overall Snack
I don’t have anything of real value to give to the winners, so why not something symbolic? And what’s more worthless, but symbolic, than a trophy?
D.I.Y. TROPHIES FOR YOUR SUPERBOWL PARTY FOR PEOPLE WHO LOVE SNACKS BUT DON’T CARE ABOUT FOOTBALL
– three old trophies (two small and one big)
– plastic fork and hollow plastic golf or ping-pong ball
– toy salt shaker, onion and pepper from your kids’ play kitchen**
– hot glue gun
– white & orange spray paint
– silver paint
– husband with access to label paper and printer
STEP ONE — CHOOSE AND PREPARE TROPHIES: If you’re in Chicago, head to the Unique Thrift Store on 35th and Archer. You’ll find the trophies in what I call the “lost memories” aisle, along with used photo albums, picture frames, and off-brand Precious Moments figurines. I chose one gigantic trophy for “Best Overall” and two smaller, but slightly different, trophies for “Orangest” and “Most Unhealthy.”
PRO-TIP: Before you leave the thrift store, don’t forget to make your Valentine’s Day plans!
Wash the trophies in hot, soapy water to eliminate grime and the tears of second-place losers. Next, clip off any symbols of actual sports, like this completely unnecessary baseball bat:
Collect any items you want to attach to the figurines, in this case a plastic fork (Best Overall), and a tiny fake salt shaker from my kids’ play kitchen (Most Unhealthy).
Borrow your friend’s hot glue gun, and adhere the toy salt shaker to the figurine in the “Most Unhealthy” trophy and the fork to the “Best Overall” trophy.
STEP TWO — PAINT: Now we’re going to paint the gold parts of our trophies white, because white makes anything seem more modern and sophisticated. Cover the base of the two smaller trophies in masking tape. For the bigger trophy, wrap a plastic bag around the base and the bottom half.
Spray with a high-gloss white paint. Two light, even coats should do it. Gorgeous, right? Jeff Koons would approve:
STEP THREE — FINISHING TOUCHES: When your white paint dries, paint both the plastic fork (Best Overall) and the top of the salt shaker (Most Unhealthy) with silver paint.
OPTIONAL: If you are feeling nervous that people aren’t going to get the symbolism, write “SALT” on the salt shaker with a black Sharpie.
While the silver paint dries, grab your “Orangest” trophy and tiny golf ball. First, spray the ball a delightfully toxic shade of orange.
When the ball is dry, poke a hole in the bottom and screw it on to the end of the figurine’s bat.
Next, spray some orange paint into the lid of a jelly jar, and use a cotton swab to smear orange around the figure’s mouth and hands, symbolizing a frenzied binge on orange-hued snacks.
For the “Best Overall” trophy, unscrew the “97” and “2nd Place” icons from the base (but hold on to them for future jewelry projects!). Grab your kids’ toy pepper and onion. Going through the existing hole in the base, push the sharp end of a wood screw through the bottom of your onion. Secure the head of the screw with a washer and screw until the onion is tightly attached to the base.
Repeat with a Pepper: If your trophies have engraving plates, tear those off. Type your new titles in a word processing document, and have your husband print them off on adhesive label-making paper at work. To be on the safe side, I printed mine in 9, 10, 11, 12, and 14-point font. If done correctly, your page of labels should look like a madmen’s eye chart.Affix a title to the appropriate trophy, and cover with packing tape if you are worried about staining (you should be).
Now send out your party invitations and wait for the Snack Offensive Line!
* Unlike its real food cousins, the tomato and potato, there is no “e” in the plural of Dorito.
** Don’t judge. I had to take the Play Golf Club set away cause the kids were using the golf clubs as weapons (of course). And I’m pretty sure we have another toy salt shaker under the couch, where I found the first one.
You had me at snack. Awesome. Amazing. Living in Germany, when my home team is playing at 12:00 am, does not a Super Bowl party make. Loved living vicariously through this post.
Is there a German equivalent to the Super Bowl? World Cup isn’t quite the same. We’ll be snacking through the winter Olympics as well.
In Australia, we have three sports to snack through: AFL, NRL and Cricket! In the first two, the ball occasionally makes contact with a foot. In the latter, the bat is king. And yes, we also love orange, cheesy, salty, greasy, basically cardboard snacks… and beer. But on top of that, you are missing the pastry based opportunities: meat pies and sausage rolls, liberally doused in tomato sauce. Think of the thin film of pastry flakes that could be coating every surface at the end of your soiree…
Read ketchup like substance for tomato sauce in the above, not marinara! Southern hemisphere tip!
I’m sorry to report that we don’t have a strong Meat Pie culture here in the States. Never really caught on for some reason. Closest we have is Hot Pockets, aka, Mouth Burn Pies.
I’ve been to one cricket game in my life, when I was living in Cape Town. Pretty sure I got food poisoning and spent most of the game in the bathroom. I wish somebody had told me that Cricket actually has no defined end time. That particular game lasted about three days, and now every time I think of cricket I get a tummy ache!
That sounds about right….. Not a big fan, myself. But you’re missing out on the hot brown glue or mystery meat tube in pastry case. As far as I can see, it’s just an excuse to eat copious quantities of tomato ketchup.
I believe you have a following from Aus due to your sense of humour (compliment by the way). On my blog rambles the other day i came across what could only be called the holy grail. If i was coming to your party i would be aiming for best overall snack with this:
and maybe reaching for the stars with world peace (i’d have to leave out the bacon for the israel/palestine conflict though)
Your orangest snack trophy is truly the best and funniest thing I’ve seen recently. My kids think I’m crazy because I’m giggling like an idiot! I admire your unending creativity.
Glad you got a good laugh. My younger kids (age 2 and 4) don’t know what to make of the trophies. Apparently my 4-year-old’s been telling her friends there’s a trophy for “Healthiest Snack,” I’m guessing because of the pepper and onion on the base of the big trophy.
Snacks and crafts. How perfectly your blog has represented two of my favorite things in life. Simply amazing. I’m not sure if these would qualify for a prize (dessert snack perhaps?) but if I were coming to your party, these are what I would bring with me:
This is the best post I have come across on WP. Really 10 points! such a fantastic job you did here. Cheers
oh and one more thing; Jef Koons would approve for sure! 😀
So happy somebody got my Jeff Koons reference. I was hoping that Jeff would be so flattered by the shout-out that he would show up at my party and be the celebrity judge for the snack contest. I mean, he did go to the Art Institute of Chicago for a time, so this is sort of like his hometown.
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