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How to Tailgate: 'Tis the Season for Egg Nog

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By time the Chargers are back at Qualcomm and ready to excite the home crowd, it will be just a couple of days away from Thanksgiving. That means that this week's tip, and possibly all of them until we hit Christmas, will be holiday related. This week? Eggnog.

I love eggnog. I always have. Every year since as long as I can remember, I have found a way to drink eggnog on both Thanksgiving and Christmas day. I did not try the alcoholic variety until fairly recently, and I guess I should mention that there was one year where I did not drink it on Christmas after looking at the nutritional value chart on a carton of eggnog the day after Thanksgiving. Little tip: Do not ever read the nutritional value chart on a carton of eggnog.

I have a few rules when it comes to eggnog.

Rule #1: Don't be stupid, there is such a thing as too much bourbon

This one is fairly self-explanatory. I think I am finally to the age where the people I am with are not out to get as drunk as possible in as little amount of time as possible before regretting it for the next two days, and I'm glad. Too often was I handed a glass of "eggnog" that turned out to be a full glass of bourbon with a dash of cream and nutmeg.

I like bourbon as much as the next guy, but I want just a hint of it in my eggnog. As I continue to drink, and taste the drink less and less, I will probably add a little more to each glass....but please, let's start off slow and appreciate this delightfully delicious and fattening drink.

Rule #2: If it does not have nutmeg, you're doing it wrong

I can't remember any other time when one gets to spice their drink with something straight off the spice rack. Adding nutmeg is not only fun, it enhances the flavor by a thousand.

A glass of eggnog with a hint of bourbon and some nutmeg on top is a heavenly blend of complex flavors that makes you want to wrap yourself up in a blanket in front of a fireplace and sing Christmas carols. Take away the nutmeg and it feels as though you've just combined your affinity for milkshakes with your uncontrollable alcoholism. The holidays should be a time to ignore those problems and pretend Nat King Cole (or Alvin and the Chipmunks) is singing directly to you.


Rule #3: Do not run out of eggnog

Have you ever been at a holiday party and everyone's drinking eggnog? You can feel the worry in the room, because everyone is eying each other and wondering how long before the eggnog is all gone. You know why? Well, for one, eggnog does not mix well with other drinks and the idea of vomiting up eggnog is enough to make you want to never drink it again. For two, other drinks taste terrible after you've been held in the sweet, supple bosom of a cool glass of eggnog.

Seriously, give it a whirl if you don't believe me. Drink a glass of eggnog and then have a beer, or a gin and tonic, or a rum and coke. "This is gross", you'll say. Your body will be saying "No vanilla extract? NO THANK YOU", and that's when the trouble begins. So, rule of thumb is bring enough eggnog for two parties. Hell, nobody is really complaining when there's some left over the next morning.


(New, un-tested) Rule #4: Eggnogs are great for fall/winter tailgating

This one will most likely be tested by me, creanium and a bunch of other people two weeks from this Monday. Sure, we'll probably work our way up to it (I don't imagine it will go too well with grilled meat), but they idea of drinking some eggnog on a cool Autumn evening before going in and watching some football just seems like a little part of the American dream....doesn't it?

If anyone is going to Houston and tailgating there this weekend, or tailgating any other games (college football?) this weekend, feel free to test out the eggnog theory and get back to me on how it works. And drive safe, please.