If your wife or girlfriend gives you a hard time whenever the game's on, don't sit back and take it. Go on the offense—teach her the sport. She's probably really never given it a chance, says Natalie Jahnke, a center for the Lingerie Football League (LFL) Champion Los Angeles Temptation. "Most women are intimidated by football because they don't know anything about it," she says. Here's all the tutorial you need.
Her Problem: Doesn't Understand the Rules of the Game
Your Play: Keep your explanation quick and simple. "Use general terminology and don't overcomplicate the sport," Jahnke says. Give her the basics, plus something she can immediately watch for, like first downs.
Her Problem: Can't Tell the Players Apart
Your Play: Pick up an issue of Star magazine and figure out which players are dating celeb actresses and models. "See number 25. He's the one who broke up with Kim." "Number 12? He's the one who had a baby with Gisele."
Her Problem: She Gets Impatient and Bored
Your Play: Break the game time down—for real. "When she sees 10 minutes on the clock, she expects it to take 10 minutes," says Jahnke. If she knows the last half of the game is really going to take 90 minutes or more, she can just relax and get into it. To help draw her in, amp up the drama. Tell her about rivalries between players and teams, or the importance of a specific win. Exaggerate as much as you can. If you make it sound like a soap opera, you may be able to hook her interest.
Her Problem: You're a Pig When You Watch
Your Play: Vegging on the couch with snacks is meant to be messy. Still, take five minutes during the first half and throw away your trash. Take the dishes to the sink. After the game, spend another five cleaning up. If she has to do it, she's just going to resent you—and football.
Her Problem: You Seem to Care More About the Score Than About Her
Your Play: Get her invested in the game's outcome. Tell her that if your team wins, you'll go out to celebrate. Or get her rooting for the other side. If her team is ahead at the half, she gets a back rub. If your team is winning, she has to reciprocate. If you're bold, up the stakes!