The top 25 things you absolutely need for a proper tailgate, in order

tailgate essentials

Tailgating is less of an art, and more of a science, but, like, really low-level science that's even before learning that some rocks are different from other rocks. Doesn't mean it can't still be tricky!! We've all seen true parking-lot ballers who bring TVs, and couches, and Nevin Shapiro, but you don't really NEED any of those things to get down and dirty and into that blessed state where the game itself becomes completely unimportant. So we rounded up a list of the 25 things that you absolutely do need, in descending order of importance -- No. 1 is more essential than No. 2, which is more essential than No. 3, and now we're just counting so we'll stop talking. After we do the list, of course.1. BeerHave you ever watched a football game sober? That wasn't a rhetorical question.

Aaron Miller

2. Ice
Your beer gets hot quick when it's in the sun/being sat on by a dude in a Brian Bosworth '80s belly jersey.

3. Cooler
Where are you going to keep that ice and beer? In your hands? Wrapped in the Bos's jersey?

4. A chair of some kind
Standing while drinking is basically impossible, as proven by every bar, all of which have seats.

Aaron Miller

5. Meat
In order to gain the power to stand back up, you need protein. Look it up in the “P” World Book.

Aaron Miller

6. Grill
Only French tailgates eat cheeseburger tartare.

Aaron Miller

7. Charcoal
Because it COULD work, but it’s ultimately a bad idea to light that grill using hay.

8. Lighter fluid
Match-lit charcoal is for pussies and every last one of them knows it. PRO TIP: do NOT use on hay.

9. Table
So it’s not as sexy as “a chair of some kind”, but keep reading -- you're going to have a LOT of things you need to put on there.

10. Cheese
The faker the better.

11. Ketchup
Feel free to swap this one with cheese if that’s your style/you are in fact Teresa Heinz Kerry.

12. Buns
Think it should be higher? You’re clearly terrible at asking the guy next to you with an odd number of buns to borrow one, you match-lit hay-eater.

Aaron Miller

13. Chips
The poor man’s meat. Or something.

14. Spatula
After chips because a thicker-cut Tostitos can totally flip a burger.

15. Plates
QVC claims they’re perfect for keeping meat and chips and ketchup in one place.

16. Team-representing clothing so you look exactly like every else
And don't bother with the tricks. No one is fooled by your new retro tee.

17. Something that produces music
Even if that’s just a car with working jumper cables. Danity Kane isn’t going to play itself!

Flip Cup
Aaron Miller

18. Solo cups
People will never stop making fun of you if you get the losery Skywalker cups.

19. Guy constantly trying to make teams to play flip cup
Seriously, he’s essential. It’s better than you having to do it.

Girls with cleavage.

20. Hot girls wearing team gear cut to display cleavage
You saw the picture, right?

21. Some kind of game to play
Settlers of Catan doesn't count, hay-boy.

Aaron Miller

22. Sunscreen
Because you’re too poor to afford a canopy.

23. Old guy with stories of when he played football with no pads back in the '60s, even though they totally wore pads then
You actually don’t even have to bring this one, he just shows up.

24. Canopy

Aaron Miller

25. Football
Wait, you're tailgating for a hockey game?