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Super Bowl survival guide: Four ways to pull out a win at your party this weekend Add to ...

If you’re going to a Super Bowl party this Sunday, then you should want to win the party. That means thinking strategically about every aspect of the occasion, from locking down the ideal seat to avoiding getting sucked in to distractions. Just like the Broncos and the Seahawks, you’ll need a playbook.

Illustrations by Matthew Bambach/The Globe and Mail

1. The Server Hand-off

Read on the field: If there’s an enterprising cook in the kitchen who prizes food more than the game itself, watch out, because chances are she or he will be on the lookout for an assistant.

Game plan: Praise this person’s cooking loudly and proudly – then connect them to the person at the party who is the least into football, and do it loudly enough for everyone to hear so that the person is guilted into helping.

2. The Stats-Guy Shuffle

Read on the field: Every party has one, a sporto with a head full of stats. “Did you know that Peyton Manning threw 55 TDs in the regular season, 29 more than Russell Wilson?”

Game plan: Counter with non-football numbers of your own that will flummox and repel stats-guy. “If Peyton wins, he could be the Lin Dan of pigskin, although no one can touch Lin’s 51 singles titles.” There’s no way stats-guy follows badminton.

3. The Second-Best Seat Sneak

Read on the field: Of course you want the best seat in the house. Everybody does. But it clearly belongs to the host, so don’t bother. The second-best seat is the one up for grabs, and you need to think like an offensive co-ordinator to score it.

Game plan: Don’t go straight for the most comfortable chair. It’s a rookie mistake. Instead, read the defence – what seat will give you the best viewing angle, maximum comfort and convenient access to snacks? That’s the one for you.

4. The Richard Sherman Question Screen

Read on the field: Seattle Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman’s trash talk at the end of the NFC Championship game guaranteed he’d become a hot (not to mention endless) topic of conversation.

Game plan: If you’re stuck talking to someone who won’t drop the topic, eject yourself by connecting these two obsessives: “Hey [stat’s guy’s name], Vince here thinks Sherman is the best corner of the last 20 years!” Then, as stats-guy rushes over citing interception numbers, just back away slowly.

Follow on Twitter: @Dave_McGinn

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