I am not a football fan but I love the Superbowl. It's not that it's the most watched event in the country. I'm not jumping on the pop culture band wagon here. I love it because it is an unofficial national holiday, more culturally hallowed than others more recognized. And for me, Superbowl Sunday is the Thanksgiving of finger food. Families gather solemnly around coffee tables topped with bowls of nachos, plates of pigs-in-blankets, stacks of sliders, guacamole and chips. Plebeian libations of beer and soda are elevated this day, shrouded in sleeves, seated on coasters, and honored with million dollar ads between plays on TV. Utensils are put away. Paper towels reign, ubiquitious catch-alls for grub or garbage alike. Superbowl Sunday is a simpler Sunday, our priorities clear and our attention undivided.
This year, we gathered around my brother's coffee table and sat in front of the shrine of his sixty inch TV with his girlfriend and her family and their bulldog aptly named Champion. The perfect occasion for a first time gathering of the clans, we ate and watched the game and laughed at commercials and did what millions of other American families do on this day. One, big happy family of people that had never met, sharing an understanding and a culture over paper plates, processed food and football.