If you read the title of the post it is no surprise what I am I going to write about.  If you guessed Aretha Franklin, you would be wrong.

Instead this tailgater is talking about the NUMBER ONE RULE of tailgating…Respect.  Yes Respect goes ahead of food, drinks, games, jerseys, and equipment.  Specifically I am talking about respecting the parking lot where you are tailgating at.

A few weeks back I was tailgating prior to the Eagles game.  A few spots down from us was a group of twenty-something NY Giants fans.

Sure I remember what it was like to be young, stupid, and free of responsibility.  Yes I am aware that Philadelphia Eagles fans / tailgaters have a reputation for not being the most well behaved bunch.  I have no problem with fans of the opposition coming to the local stadium, enjoying their tailgate, and engaging in some good natured taunting and trash talking.   If they want to spend their hard earned dollars in a hostile environment, more power to those fans.  I probably wouldn’t do it or suggest doing it, but what do I know (if you ask my wife she would probably say very little).

What I do have a problem with is fans of the opposing team (or even the home team) acting like complete jack asses during the tailgate.  What is a tailgating jack ass?  Simple, it is when (even before the effects of alcohol take over) you scream vulgar taunts to the fans around you (and some of those fans are children), drink way too much, light the home team jerseys on fire, and piss on the surrounding building walls.   Flat out disrespect to your fellow tailgaters, your environment, and even the team that you are supporting.

There is no right or wrong way to tailgate.  There is no tailgate that is too small or too big.  There is no tailgate that is uncool.  Each tailgater has their own definition of the perfect tailgate.  Perfection could be a simple hoagie and 1-2 beers with your dad or significant other.  Perfection could be arriving 6 hours before kick-off with multiple grills and so many friends you needed a bus or van to get everyone down to the game.

What is 100% wrong is disrespecting the tailgate by ruining the good time for your fellow tailgaters.  Enjoy the tailgate.  Even with some alcohol in you there is no reason why you can’t act like you still have half a brain.  Tailgating is fun.  Tailgating is a reward for all of the crap that we go through the other days of the week.  Respect the tailgate or stay home!