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NFL Football on Thanksgiving: An American Tradition

Beating the Crowd on Thanksgiving

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There is nothing quite like the way Thanksgiving brings families together to give thanks for all the things they have to be thankful for. For some, it's their health, their career, or their friends. For most, though, it's the very family members they are gathered together with that they are most thankful for.

Thanksgiving is a holiday that is steeped in tradition. After all, it just wouldn't be Thanksgiving without the turkey and dressing and the pumpkin pie with whipped cream. And, of course, it just would not be Thanksgiving without NFL Football.

Pro football has become as big a tradition at Thanksgiving as the turkey and pumpkin pie, and if your Thanksgiving celebrations are like mine, most of the football fans head right for the television as soon as they hit the door.

Now, if you come from a rather large family, this can cause a problem, especially if you are hoping to get a good view of the games from a comfortable seat. Being the huge football fan that I am, I've developed a plan to make sure I always have a prime location to enjoy all the action.

Getting Into Position
1. The first and most important part of the plan is to get to Grandma's house as early as possible. Now you don't want to go jump in the 'ol Lay-Z-Boy right off the bat, because the day is too long to keep your butt in one place. Instead, hang around the kitchen chatting with Grandma and sampling the vittles.

This will accomplish two things. First, Grandma will think you are the greatest simply because you came over early "just" to visit with her. And with Christmas right around the corner, it doesn't hurt to kiss up to Grams a little.

2. The second thing this accomplishes is it gives you a chance to fill up on some of the goodies that Grandma has spent the waking hours preparing, so make sure you take advantage of this time. You will be much less tempted to sneak into the kitchen later when the living room starts to fill up.

3. As other aunts, uncles, cousins, and cousins of cousins start to arrive, its time to make your move to the living room, click on the pregame show and find a comfortable spot right in front of the television that you can settle into with your supply of appetizers and cold drinks.

Now you are in position to enjoy the first half of the game, but it will take a little bit of strategy and awareness on your part to keep that perfect vantage point for the entire afternoon.

Obstacles to Overcome
1. The first rule of thumb is to limit your consumption of any type of liquid, especially beer, to eliminate as many bathroom breaks as possible. I know football without beer might be tough on some of you, but it's worth the sacrifice and your family will admire your ability to stay sober for the holiday.

2. Your first major hurdle of the day will be at half time of the first game. My strategy at this point is to get up at the two-minute warning to stretch my legs, at which point a half-intoxicated Uncle Eddie usually hops into my spot announcing, "Move your feet, lose your seat", as if it's the funniest thing anyone's ever heard.

The purpose of getting up now is to give your body time to stretch out as you prepare to go into your next phase of "squatting". It also makes Uncle Eddie feel like he has accomplished something by taking your spot, although his thirst for another cold one won't allow him to stay there long.

After I have satisfied my own needs, I hover around the good seats waiting for anyone to get up. Everyone else may hold their ground into the second half, but I know sooner or later Uncle Eddie will mumble something about releasing the hounds as he staggers out of the room and that's when I jump right back into my nice warm, comfortable spot.

3. Usually Thanksgiving dinner is served about the time the second game is beginning, so my game plan here is...

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