Today is Thanksgiving, and you know what that means...food, football and a nice long nap.
And wouldn't it be nice if that special lady in your life could share your love for all three? Especially the football part?
Even though women are one of the fastest growing demographics of sports fans, some of us might need a little coaxing to start watching the Super Bowl for more than just the commercials.
That's where I come in.
After Thanksgiving comes "Black Friday," and while your girlfriend is out fighting the crowds at the mall, you won't even have to leave your house to pick out a perfect holiday gift for her.
Since I am both a woman and a football junkie, you can think of me as your personal shopper as I give you some great tips to convert your sweetheart into a football fanatic.
And no. Screaming "Sack HIM!" at the top of your lungs at the television does not count as a football lesson.
Even though terms like "first and 10" and "holding" may be part of most football fans' everyday vocabulary, you might as well be speaking a foreign language to someone who doesn't follow football.
Just remember: The "Wildcat" is an animal, and "Nickelback" is an awful Canadian band to people who know nothing about the sport.
Kaye Lake's book entitled, Learn to Love It: A 'Quickie' Guide to Men and Pro Football in 60 Minutes! is a funny, easy read which explains the sport in a way that women understand.
You know how you just don't understand your girlfriend's obsession with Desperate Housewives?
Well, that is exactly how she feels about football.
How do you find some common ground?
A good old-fashioned tear-jerker of course!
Don't worry, boys. I'm not suggesting that you go out and rent a copy of Steel Magnolias here.
Think of the last movie that made you cry.
Let me guess: Brian's Song? Remember the Titans?
Introduce your significant other to the emotional roller coaster that is a football movie.
My main suggestion for this holiday season: The Blind Side.
It might not be your first choice, but trust me on this one. Women love Sandra Bullock.
(Note: This movie works for all football fans, but it is especially effective for those of you who love the Baltimore Ravens.)
You know how they always say "dress for the job you want"?
Well, let's apply that logic to your girlfriend for a moment.
The NFL has come out with its own line of women's apparel, and we no longer have to shop in the children's section to find a jersey that comes above our knees!
Start her off with nice, close-fitting t-shirt or jersey, and she'll have yet another reason to start paying attention to the game.
(Note: Please, please, please do NOT buy your girlfriend a pink jersey. She may think they're cute at the moment, but as she becomes a bigger fan, she will quickly be just as annoyed by them as the rest of us.)
The fastest way to a man's heart is through his stomach, but a girl's gotta eat too!
And even the most clueless boyfriend knows that when it comes to women, the more chocolate, the better!
If you go out right now and buy a Whitman's Sampler, I will have to hurt you.
Try something a little different this time.
How about a Candy Bar Cake? Lots of mini chocolate bars with a football twist?
Sign me up!
Let's face it: You're more of German shepherd guy, but your girlfriend loves her yippy little Yorkie,
That dog annoys the hell out of you, doesn't it?
I feel your pain, but the mutt isn't going anywhere. And you have to be nice to it.
So what's the best way to make the little demon easier to tolerate and show your girl you care?
How about a nice Wolverines jacket?
Okay. I know the idea of sending a dozen red roses sounds really romantic, but flowers die.
And we're sick of them.
Unless you're sending us a surprise bouquet at work "just because," ordering us flowers is lazy and cliche.
You know what we like better than flowers?
"Jewelry is cliche too!" you might say. Yes, but we like this one.
And let me let you in on another secret: You know those heart-shaped necklaces with the three diamonds that they advertise at all the jewelery stores?
I have about seven of them, and the first one came from a guy I dated in high school.
Save your girlfriend the pain of having to pretend to like (and then pretend to lose) that necklace, and try something different this year.
I don't know if you guys have noticed this, but women love accessories!
We love handbags, headbands, scarves and shoes.
And you know what makes those accessories even better? When we don't have to buy them!
As much as we would love a little something new, many of us have trouble justifying buying yet another handbag when what we really need is a new winter coat.
Lucky for us, we have the best boyfriends in the world!
So don't get her something that she needs this year. Get her something that she wants.
You may not be able to get your girlfriend to paint her face for the big game, but you might be able to convince her to paint her nails!
The NFL has come out with team-specific fingernail polish so your lady can make sure she paints her digits exactly the right color!
Quick question: What is sexier than your girlfriend in her underwear?
Answer: Your girlfriend in some sexy sports-themed underwear!
Victoria's Secret has a new line of collegiate t-shirts, sweatpants...and yes, panties!
Like you needed another reason to look at her butt...
Not a college football fan? No problem. VS has a line of NFL gear as well!
How do you get away with buying your girlfriend football tickets for the holidays?
The tickets are more for yourself, so you can't just stick them in her stocking and expect her to be excited about them.
So it's time to get creative. The key is to make it all about her.
Make a day out of it!
If it's an early game, start by making her breakfast in bed. Encourage her to wear that new Peyton Manning jersey, and tell her how hot she looks in it.
If it's a night game, take her out to her favorite restaurant and be a perfect gentleman. Wear her favorite cologne, and open doors for her.
And here's the key:
If you want her to want to go to another game in the future, you need to make sure she feels comfortable. That means answering questions (without being patronizing) and chatting with her even when you'd rather be watching the next down.
And most importantly: STAY SOBER!
You might think that Fireman Ed is funny, but trust me.
He is the opposite of sexy.