I love tailgating. I don't care how much you love it, I love it more!
Most of my Christmas present requests revolve around tailgating. Birthday presents get the same treatment. I've even got a Facebook group for my friends to discuss all things tailgating. Not that it's all that active, few people are as insane as I am when it comes to the glory that is a good pre-game tailgate.
My goal in tailgating is two-fold:
1. Have an AWESOME time. It doesn't matter if the game is won or lost; I tore it up with my buddies for a few hours and raised some hell.
2. Find that point of equilibrium. Enjoying myself just enough to where I both remember the game and don't have double vision.
This is a bigger challenge than one might think. It involves front-loading, in-stadium maintenance, and possible negation with diet coke and nachos. I still subscribe to the rule that states if you don't have a raging hangover by the third quarter then you didn't do it right.
For the record I ALWAYS have a DD. I get two sets of season tickets, one for me, and one for my driver. Double vision is a real pain when your seats are in the 300’s and you’ve got to close one eye to watch the plays so it’s inadvisable.
My buddies and I tailgate out towards Ramsey (telling you exactly where would be cheating and giving away the secret to a decent spot, however if you’d like to meet up simply send me a PM).
We have great access to Sanford Stadium and the Dawg Walk via a shuttle bus that stops next to our spot. The bus isn’t mandatory but is great when it’s 95-degrees and you’re feeling lazy and don’t wish to walk a long way.
While we have trees at our spot, I really miss the golden days of being under the oaks at Lumpkin and Baxter. I'll forever cherish those times. It's truly sad that the fans have been sold out to corporate concerns and I really hope someone's karma is taking the hit.
Here’s what Saturday will look like for me. This will be the shortest tailgate of the year due to me getting out of work at 0700 and the game starting a little early.
07:00: Floor it home from work. Get dressed. Make Coffee. All beverages before a certain time MUST be Coffee based or a Bloody Mary so as not to feel like a total alcoholic.
If the game is after 15:30 then 11:00 is the cutoff. If the game is from 15:30 to 13:00 then you may start at 10:30. If the game is before 1:00, then drink one of whichever breakfast type beverage appeals to you and move on to whatever you like.
Provisions should all put in a cooler the previous night.
07:10: Wait for my buddy to stop by and pick me up. Pound my coffee based beverage.
07:15: My buddy is here. We go by QT and get some ice and an energy drink then and crank it out to Athens.
08:10: We’re at the spot. We fire up the grill immediately. Wait for the rest of my crew to arrive. Erect tents and chairs. Start drinking and carrying on, talk about how awesome the Dawgs are going to be. Start looking for scalpers in an attempt to upgrade your seats.
08:30: Comment on how hot it is because it’s an early season game and how much better it was in days past when anyone could use the legion lot as a their own personal partying ground.
09:00: Throw the meat on. Continue partying. Other fans, fans who obviously don’t care as much as I do, have shown up.
09:30: Burgers and dogs are up. It is now time to feast. Drinking should continue. Discuss the douchebaggery of Michael Adams.
10:00: The Dawg Walk starts in an hour. Grab some provisions and march to the Tate center.
10:20: While passing fans and tailgates always yell out a hearty “Go DAWGS” while holding up your beverage. If you know them, stop by for a bit and reminisce about how it’s amazing that you’re not still in prison for the trouble that you caused in college.
10:40: A good spot to hit the restroom is at Snelling dining hall.
10:50: Now that you’re at the Dawg Walk, fight for a spot up front. Rumor has it that touching Knowshon cures everything from obesity to AIDS. Chant along with whatever the redcoats are chanting and rock out.
11:00: Hear the first police vehicles approaching. Start screaming like a 12-year old at a Jonas Brothers concert.
11:11: Take lots of pictures. Yell slogans of support. If no kids are within earshot, feel free the pepper these slogans of support with colorful language.
11:30: With the Dawg Walk now over we go tail gate with my buddies from the UGA Rugby team.
11:40: Drink and sing filthy rugby songs. Hear the same chant about how there’s nothing finer in the land than a drunk obnoxious Georgia fan at least 12 times in the next half hour. Of course you’ll never hear it begin, but feel free to start yelling at whichever point you feel appropriate.
12:00: Grab some mobile provisions and make your way to the stadium.
12:15: In the stadium, walk in, pay respects to the fallen Ugas.
12:20: Get to seats. Watch the trumpet solo of the first few bars of, “Glory, Glory…” Feel a tear of pride and relief fall down your cheek as you know you survived another round of off season doldrums. Watch video montages and start screaming your lungs out.
We finally made it football fans! Another horrible off-season is gone and the happy days are here again. Remember, while your team can lose a game, you can NEVER lose a tailgate. Debauch all you like, but do it safely.
I'll see you on Saturdays in Athens.