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Super Bowl Glossaries

A viewers' guide to understanding The Big Game

Click here for more on this story
Posted: Friday January 26, 2001 6:37 PM
Updated: Friday January 26, 2001 9:00 PM

By Paul JJ Payack, Robert Beard and Peter Payack,

Super Bowl Glossary
Term Definition 
Billions  More than the Gross National Product of dozens of countries. Also, the amount of money that is wagered on the Super Bowl. 
Football  The All-American game, descended from rugby, first played by Rutgers and Princeton in the 19th century and, later, popularized by Las Vegas odds makers. 
Founding Fathers  George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, and company, or Wellington Mara and Art Model. 
Hot Dog   The propensity to 'act out' in full view of the television cameras in a pseudo-ritualistic dance or rhythmic motions. 
Las Vegas  The site of the real action on Super Bowl Sunday.  
Over/Under  Exotic wager where you bet that the combined team scoring will be either higher or lower than the number designated. 
Overtime  What Tampa Bay residents have to work in order to pay for Raymond James Stadium. 
Pancake  To flatten an opponent. Also, a common breakfast food. 
Parity  The effort to level the playing field in the NFL. Super Bowl XXXV is a direct result of parity. 
Parody  ... of its former self. What the NFL has become since introducing the concept of parity. 
Ravens   Balmer football organization with a very unusual pedigree: from 'colts' to 'browns' to 'crows'. 
Raven Roosts  Favorite watering holes for Raven Fans. 
Salary Cap  The number you must exceed to become a competitive force in the NFL. 
Squares  The unofficial Super Bowl matrix used for friendly wagers in office pools around the nation. 
Squares  Fans of Major League Soccor (futbol). 
Touchback  What you do to the person who touches you for the price of an NFL ticket (archaic). 
Turnover  They're called Krispy Kremes in Tampa. 
110%  Historically, the coach used to ask 100% from his players; currently, the minimum acceptable effort is 110%. Apparently due to inflation in the Exertion Index.) 
Giants Glossary
Term Definition 
Big Blue  The perennial nickname of the great Giant defensive lines. Linguistically traced back to the IBM colossus. 
Draft  For old-timers, that would be Ballantine tap. 
Dud  Bruce Springstreen's machine, which is"all stuck in the mud somewhere in the swamps of Jersey," (aka the Meadowlands). 
Fair Catch  A date with an XFL cheerleader. 
Football  The All-American game, descended from rugby, first played by Rutgers and Princeton in the 19th century, later popularized by Las Vegas odds makers. 
Fuhgetaboutit  Local term with 38 different nuances of meaning, depending upon inflection and accompanying gestures.  
"Goodbye Allie"  Chant by Giant fans in the 60s demanding the removal of head coach Allie Sherman while playing at Yankee Stadium. 
Gnats  Official name of Jets fans, as rendered by the Giants 'cognoscenti'. (Cognoscenti can be translated here as 'tough guys,' 'know-it-alls,' or 'wise guys'.) 
Hoffa End Zone   The end zone under which former Teamsters head honcho, Jimmy Hoffa, is reputedly buried at the Meadowlands. Takes on special meaning when a punter goes for the 'coffin corner'. 
Incomplete Pass   Being turned down for a date by an XFL cheerleader. (See also, fumble). 
Jints  Official pronunciation of 'Giants'. One syllable only, please; linguistic construction known as syllable reduction. 
Kicked Off  (See Hoffa End Zone.) 
Las Vegas   The site of the real action on Super Bowl Sunday. 
Mara Tech  The illustrious school of higher education founded by Wellington Mara. 
Meadowlands   Euphemism for the Swamps of New Jersey. 
"Nevermore"   Nostrodamus-like utterance of Edgar Allen Poe's protagonist in his poem, "The Raven." 
New York City  Hinterland to the Meadowlands.  
Raven  Five dollar word for maladjusted, malnourished avian creature on the verge of extinction. (See also, 'eat crow'.) 
Sack  Something to stuff Raven QB Trent Dilfer in, before sending him off to the swamps of North Jersey.  
Spread   Law enforcement maneuver; also, a lush presentation of food at Super Bowl parties. 
Tailgate Party   24/7 activity, with brief three-hour interlude on Sundays that includes fermented beverages, salty snacks, salty language and barbecued winged creatures. (See 
The Boss   Applied to any, or all, of the following: a) Bruce Springsteen, b) George Steinbrenner, or c) Wellington Mara 
The Donald   In Central Florida, Donald Duck. In the tri-State area, of course, Donald Trump. 
The Tuna   Nickname (condensed over the years from The Big Tuna) for Bill Parcells, the currently unemployed ex-Giant coach who took the team to two Super Bowl titles. (Warning: 
Timeout  Each team is strictly limited to three per half. (See TV Time Out.) 
TV Time Out  A strictly unlimited number of television timeouts when all action on the field comes to a complete standstill. Cost to teams: Possible lose of momentum. 
Yalta Conference  The NFC East from Y.A. Tittle, to Lawrence Taylor, to Bernie Accorsi. 
Ravens Glossary
Term Definition 
Balmer  The largest city in Maryland; home to the Ravens. Often mispronounced as Balt' ti-more. Official abbreviation, Balto, of unknown origin. 
Bushel  A bushel of softshell crabs ready to be steamed; also, the number of points scored by the Ravens. 
BWI  A quicker route to Super Bowl than Dulles. 
Crab cake  As in 'cake walk,' that the Ravens will experience on Sunday. 
Draft  Natty Bo on tap. 
Fair Catch  A date with a Ravens Cheerleader. 
Football  The All-American game, descended from rugby, first played by Rutgers and Princeton in the 19th century and, later, popularized by Las Vegas odds makers. 
Fort McHenry  Heroic defense of Baltimore inspired Francis Scott Key. 
Founding Fathers  George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, and company, or Wellington Mara & Art Model. 
Francis Scott Key  His tune has been atop the charts for 200 years. (See also, Soprano). 
Fuhgetaboutit  Jersey slang with 38 different nuances of meaning, depending upon inflection and accompanying gestures. Also, the chances of a Giants victory. 
Harbor Tunnel  Famous Balmer thoroughfare. Also, a very good place for Giants to hide from Raven's Defense. 
Incomplete Pass  Being turned down for a date by a Ravens cheerleader. (See also, fumble). 
Inner Harbor  The nesting ground (and purported final resting place) of the endangered species, Footballus Giantus. 
"Nevermore"  Sage-like utterance of Edgar Allen Poe's protagonist in, "The Raven." Uncannily, all-too-accurately expresses the prospects of a Giants victory.  
National Aquarium  A large fish tank containing many species of sea creatures that did not make it to the Super Bowl, including Dolphins, Marlins, and Seahawks. 
Neutral Zone  An area of the Middle Atlantic states, approximating the Mason-Dixon Line, where fans root for neither the Giants nor the Ravens. Another name for Delaware. 
Raven Roosts  Favorite watering holes for Raven Fans. 
Scrapple  A local breakfast favorite that's hard to describe like 'grits' or 'hush puppies'. Literally, a fried pork-cornmeal combo. 
Irsay  (verb) Balmer term meaning to sneak out, under the cover of darkness, as in 'to Irsay'. 

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