It’s tailgating season, which means that on any given weekend, you will find yourself outside of a stadium getting drunk with close friends and complete strangers alike, grilling the finest meats and getting hyped for a game you may or may not even make it to. Of course, in order to even have a chance at making it to the game, you’ll have to navigate an entire lot full of ridiculous idiots, each of whom will sap your will to live.
Yes, much like ‘Nam, you’ve gotta stay frosty so Charlie doesn’t get you. In this case, Charlie is a depraved drunk who wants to show you every nook and cranny of his new luxury RV, but the idea is still the same. So, in order to save you from Charlie and from PTSD, you’re going to need to know how to survive these nine ridiculous people you will meet while tailgating.
This is Charlie and his RV I mentioned in the intro. This dude rolls up in a goddamn moving fortress that is more tricked out than most people’s homes. He might even have a giant party tent to entertain all of his “close” friends. There will be the giant TV, the bottomless pit of alcohol and meat, and everything else that makes him the king of a rolling Sodom and Gomorrah, and he’s more than willing to share it all with you.
Sounds great, right? Wrong.
You see, the thing about this dude is that there’s a reason he’s so extravagant, so “giving.” It’s because he’s lonely, it’s because he’s insecure, and if you’re not careful, you’ll find yourself drawn into his web, where he will keep you and devour your will to live with “exciting” tales of his wealth. If you’re really into hearing all about the time he totally killed a pharmaceutical deal along with detailed explanations of every hole of his most recent round of golf, then go for it. Otherwise, stay away and bitch like everyone else about all the noise this jackass’s generator is making.
The Master Chef
You just want a goddamn burger, but this dude is going to make you sit there and learn all about the history of hamburgers, along with the right and wrong ways to prepare them. Oh Lord, you will hear about the wrong ways.
There is nothing to be gained here. Sure, he might actually make a killer burger, but is it really worth it to have to listen to him expound on the virtues of the secret ingredient he keeps talking about but won’t actually reveal? No. No, it’s not.
The Beer Snob
This is the first-cousin of the Master Chef, and just like his cuz, he’s gonna sit there and make you listen to a goddamn lecture on the importance of the “right” beer, along with a doctoral dissertation on the difference between light and dark, what qualifies a beer to be a “true” craft beer and about a million other things that you never knew you could care so little about. You just want to get bombed with your friends. This dude wants to prepare you for induction into some creepy secret nerd beer lover society. You drink to avoid people like him.
Don’t even get me started on the people drinking wine at a fucking tailgate.
Everyone’s Best Friend
This dude has no filter, no boundaries, and is at least half in the bag. Those are the ingredients for a supremely annoying variety of bro who will drift from one tailgate gathering to another, loudly crashing every conversation within earshot, awkwardly hitting on people’s moms, and helping himself to your booze.
Everyone will just assume that he must know someone, and this is how he gets away with it. His actual “friends” are content to just let him roam from group to group and be “that one asshole friend” to everyone else for a change. If you see this man coming, it’s already too late. There’s nothing you can do. I know that sounds bleak, but it’s a fucking jungle out there, bros, and sometimes, you’re gonna die.
The D-I Athlete
Sure, you’re just playing catch, but this dude could have totally played ball for Oklahoma if the coaches weren’t such dicks. That’s his story, anyway, and he’ll dazzle you with feats of athletic prowess not seen since, uh… since the last time a dude threw a ball across the parking lot.
Just let him have his “glory” and indulge his bullshit, but only as long as he doesn’t go completely over the top with it. If he starts trying to show you up, you have my permission to utterly humiliate him. How you do this is up to you, but it should be easy once he tries to prove he can throw a football 70 yards and ends up needing to lie down after the only he thing he throws out is his back.
Holy shit, Tom Brady is here! Is that Gisele?
That’s the message by the time it reaches you. What you don’t know is that it actually started out as Tom Brady’s cousin’s roommate, who once jizzed while looking at a picture of Gisele on the internet. That’s who’s actually tailgating with you.
That won’t stop people from acting like he somehow matters, or asking him a million questions about a dude he never even met. If you’re lucky, he’ll be just as embarrassed as you are having to witness this. If you’re not, he’ll actually try to act important and you’ll be forced to hear stories about the time his roommate saw Gisele for two seconds at a family party, and people will just lap that shit up.
Again, sometimes there’s no escape in these situations, but if you really want to go nuclear, make up your own bullshit story about how you know Tom and Gisele. Shit, say you fucked Gronk. Sometimes, the only way to put out a massive fire is to start an even bigger one and suck all the oxygen away. Sure, you’ll only end up burning yourself in the end, but at least you won’t have to listen to any more of this bullshit.
This dude knows everything about everything. Of course, it turns out he doesn’t actually know anything about anything, but that won’t stop him from telling you that Colin Kaepernick is a secret member of ISIS, that he personally knows that Jim Harbaugh is negotiating a return to the NFL and that the original Undertaker died in 1994 and the new one is an impostor.
He has something to say about literally everything, from sports to politics to the stock market to whatever the fuck you can think of. That Netflix show you love? He knows the real story. Your favorite website? He heard that it’s run by the NSA. Your wife? He’s pretty sure he dated her in college.
The one thing he’s not an expert on? Not being an annoying asshole. Just try to tune him out and if the opportunity arises, draw a dick on his forehead in permanent marker.
It’s simple. Dude gets drunk, dude starts imagining slights, dude starts throwing punches, probably while shirtless.
This will happen at some point, but that’s just because you can find this asshole in any social situation. The only difference here is that he’s being given the fuel that makes it happen, sort of like an autistic Popeye. Once he gets that liquid spinach in him, everyone seems like Bluto, and he’s gonna start swinging. Just stay out of his way and maybe laugh while the cops haul him off in cuffs.
The Fallen Soldier
This poor dude is hyped about the game, but never actually makes it through the front gate. Why? Because he gets so drunk that he passes out at 11 AM, forcing you to leave him in the parking lot with whatever poor friend of his draws the short straw and has to stay and babysit his ass.
Just hope that you aren’t the one who has to take care of him, and don’t be the dude who falls before even going into battle with his brothers. Like I said, this shit is like ‘Nam, and if you do manage to make it out alive, just be thankful and honor your brothers who you had to leave behind.