By Brian Cullen

This offseason, we’ve gone over the deep end defining what a tailgate can be. Yes, we’ve liberally given tailgate status to everything from movies to video games to hot dog eating contests to award shows and then some. We’ve reached a point where loyal readers of this site might be prepared to hear the question: “Can a _______ be a tailgate?” with the eventual, inevitable answer being “Yes.” But today, we’re flipping the script. And we’re going to cover the 15 places where it’s absolutely, unequivocally not okay to tailgate. That’s not to say you can’t get drunk. This is the damn United States of America, after all. Hell, you could even pull up in your car and grill some burgers. But as a matter of principle, we cannot now, nor ever, name it a “tailgate.” Ready? Good. Here we go.

Awaiting the Birth of the Royal Baby

With that, you know what inspired this entire list. Yes, royal babies only come around once in a blue moon. And when they do, the world goes all crazytown bananapants, because, if there’s one thing the world needs, it’s a pampered, over-privileged white guy taking up everyone’s Facebook newsfeed.

So, here’s the thing. You can go nuts over whatever the heck you want. But so help me Jupiter, if you besmirch the good name of tailgating over a child whose life is basically going to be a sequel to The Truman Show, I will go Hacksaw Jim Duggan all over your keister. Look… tailgating is about squeezing every ounce out of life in celebration of some radical event. And if you choose to welcome a screaming, bald, naked, peeing, pooping, goo-covered infant who already has more money and prestige than you ever will by tailgating? Well then. good day, sir.


Pope Francis Visits Shrine Of Our Lady Of Aparecida

The Pope in Brazil (Photo Credit: Buda Mendes/Getty Images)

Most Religious Ceremonies

So, I was raised Catholic and went to Notre Dame, so I can’t speak on behalf of most religions (although I hear that Zoroastrians put on a bitchin’ kegger). But what I can tell you is that, from my limited experience, most religious ceremonies are probably a teeeeeeensy bit inappropriate to tailgate at. Now, if they have some kind of buffet afterwards and you can grab a few beers, that’s one thing. Just don’t plan on shotgunning outside of little Johnny’s Confirmation.

During the Showing of Any World War II Movie

NO NO NO NO NO. None of them. Not even G.I. Bro. If it’s about World War II, you are not allowed to tailgate. I think, these days, pretty much any other war is open for some kind of healthy irreverence (uh, hello? War of 1812? Perfect punchline fodder). But there’s something about World War II that makes it totally out of bounds for parking lot celebrations.

During Any Episode of Glee


Stop it.

LaMichael James San Francisco 49ers

2013 NFC Championship (Photo Credit: Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)

During the Championship Game

“But Brian,” you might say, “Which championship game?” to which I say, “Yes.” Any of them. Don’t forget that tailgating is supposed to be the seasoning that makes your sports meat (…ew) even better. If you’re avoiding the selfsame event that you came to see, you’re doing it wrong. Doubly wrong if you’re grilling instead of watching “the” championship. I appreciate your zeal for grilling and drinking, friend. I truly do. But, please, show some restraint.

In the Shower

…because why would you?

Before Naptime

I mean, this seems like it’d be a whole lot of effort, especially when you’re tired.

After Engaging in “Relations”

Although, please note, before engaging in relations is a-ok.

Joe Cahn, Commissioner of Tailgating at Superdome

Joe Cahn at the Superdome (Photo Credit: Joe Cahn)

At Work

There is, of course, a beautiful exception to this rule: Joe Cahn, the Commissioner of Tailgating. He has found the cheat code for life by finding a way to turn tailgating into his job. He is allowed to tailgate at work.

You? You are not. Go back to your spreadsheets.

Before Spring Cleaning

I mean, you certainly could, but you’re just doubling up the work. And besides, if you’ve ever gotten barbeque sauce on your shirt (and if you’re reading this site, you probably have), then you know it’s a pain in the ass to clean up.

Before the Westminster Dog Show

You know, it’s not that you’re not allowed to. It’s just that I can’t imagine the Venn diagram connecting dog show aficionados and tailgaters. There’s gotta be, like, one guy who this applies to, right?

Although, this does look pretty fun.

Outside of a Playboy Mansion Party


Playboy Mansion

Playboy Mansion (Photo Credit: Gabriel Bouys/AFP/Getty Images)

In the Middle of a Montage

Because then you wouldn’t have time to enjoy either the tailgate or the montage. Silly.

Outside of a Texas Barbeque Restaurant

Unless you’re naively challenging them for some kind of barbeque crown, you should be leaving these kinds of things to the pros. Now go in there and enjoy some brisket.

Before Your Significant Other Says They “Need to Talk”

Actually, this one’s okay. If you’re going to get dumped, you may as well be skunked.

Now, while this list is by no means exhaustive, it should serve to illustrate one very important point: tailgating is a precious and beautiful thing. And you can’t get away with it everywhere. So wheresoever you can get away with it, you probably should.

Check out Brian’s Tailgating Top 10s.

Stop in at the Man Cave Daily, where the women are hot and the beer is cold.

Brian Cullen loves and condones tailgates wherever possible, but come on, folks. Let’s be reasonable. Hit him up on Twitter @bucketcullen.


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