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Yesterday, I went through the same big-game routine I’ve been using for years. It never lets me down.

I left home at 3:15 pm, drove to the Stadium-Armory Metro stop, parked and took the Orange Line train four stops to the Morgan Boulevard station, then walked a mile and some change to the Green Lot to meet friends at their usual tailgating spot.

At 7 p.m., after a few hours of cooked meats and people watching and taking insults from the funniest folks on the planet—the recipe for bliss at my age—I headed back to Metro. I made it to Petworth in time to watch the game, from its opening kickoff to that Walk-Off Hold, on my TV. Great game.

While taking in the fabulous NBC broadcast, I changed the strings on a guitar I bought on Craigslist for less than what my tailgating pals paid for their Redskins tickets. The game’s over, and I still have the guitar. It plays real nice.

(And, yes, for those who would prefer to stick around after the tailgate and spend good money to see the football live, the FedExField box office was still selling tickets for face value at 7:10 p.m. when I stopped by on my way to Metro. The box-office stop is also part of my big-game routine, and there have been tickets for sale every time I’ve looked. Every single time. Soon, everybody will accept that the blackout rule is as mythical as the waiting list around here.)