I have an interesting side bet coming up in Week 1 for one of my leagues. It's with a friend who seems to relish side bets, and now I'm a bit nervous.
The bet is this: Loser has to let the winner wax his leg. Yes, you read that correctly. Picture Steve Carell in The 40-Year Old Virgin getting the wax treatment done on his chest. I can't imagine that this will feel good if I lose. In fact, I imagine that it's going to hurt like hell. Why women do this is beyond me, but I'll man up if I lose the bet. UPDATE: I lost this bet, had my leg waxed, and while the process didn't feel particularly good, my leg was super smooth for months...
That got me to thinking. Side bets and the social aspect of fantasy football is something that sites like FFN and others don't pay much attention to. We try to focus on providing you with the best advice for drafting and sit/start decisions using technology to help facilitate that. What no site can really do though is provide the social interactions. Either your league has that dynamic or it doesn't. Hopefully your league does, because here are some ideas for side bets or punishments for losing a matchup. If you have some good ones, post them below or shoot me an email.
Fantasy Football Punishments
These side bets are designed to be used on weekly games. If there's a chance that you could lose a job, a spouse, or any body part by participating, think twice about taking the bet.
The Team Name and Logo Bet: The loser has to change his/her team name and team logo (if applicable) to whatever the winner wants for the next week. Let your creativity flow! In the past, I've simply searched "WTF" on Google Images to find some seriously high quality logos for the loser's team.
Fantasy Loser Tattoo I am not suggesting that you get an actual tattoo (although, that takes the stakes up considerably). Instead, I'm recommending a temporary fantasy football tattoo. These are 100% safe and non-toxic. It only lasts a few days - long enough to embarrass the loser but not too long that they get a complex over it. Where it gets placed on someone's body is up for negotiation!
Target the Loser: This is a must-do and easy enough to follow through with. The loser has to wear khaki pants and a red shirt & walk into the nearest Target store. The winner (and the rest of the league) can join as well, but cannot interfere. The loser has to approach between 3 and 5 customers and ask if they need any assistance and offer assistance if they request it. Bonus points for getting a Target gift registry scanner. ** Side note: I've lost this bet before. I had so much fun with it that I went way over the 5 customers. It's interesting how many people dismissed me and didn't want help. That didn't stop me from reminding them that they can save 20% on their purchases today by applying for a Target Red Card (I don't even know if that's true). **
Waffle House Challenge: This one comes from Laine Higgins of the Wall Street Journal. Loser has to sit in a Waffle House for 24 hours. Your only saving grace? Each waffle you eat reduces the total time by 1 hour. My personal best is spending 4 hours at a Waffle House, and as much I enjoy the 24-hour food option, I don't know that I want to eat 20 waffles. I would; however, enjoy watching someone else have to endure the challenge!
The Human Car Wash Bet: If you've seen the movie Dazed and Confused, you'll recall the scene where the senior girls take the freshman girls through the car wash in a pickup truck. Of course, the freshman are the ones getting washed. What can I say? Losing is a dirty business.
The Meow Bet: For one day, anytime the loser has to speak to someone (either on the phone or in person), he/she has to work the word "meow" into the conversation. If you've seen the meow scene from the movie Super Troopers, you know what I'm talking about. Last year, I did this bet with the same guy that I have the leg waxing bet with this week. He was awesome and followed through with it. Trust me, even by the end of the day it doesn't get old.
May I Help You Park Bet: I lost this bet before as well. The loser has to go to work and direct cars on where they need to park. It is actually quite remarkable how people assume you have a mantle of authority for where they park by simply wearing a reflective vest and having a wand in your hand. The whistle was a nice touch I thought.
The Suspicious Purchase Bet: I think I saw this one from Matthew Berry. The loser has to go to the grocery store on a Sunday morning before game time. Usually this is when the store is busy (Sunday paper coupons, game day snacks, etc) and the loser has to find the busiest checkout lane. He/she has to purchase a large cucumber, condoms, and lube. Extra points for smiling silently the whole time.
The Get Me a Beer Bet: One of the simplest punishments can be simply making the loser your "beer bitch" for the day. If you're thirsty, let the loser get your beer for you while you rest comfortably and don't miss any of the game. If you're hungry, let the loser make you a sandwich. Don't forget the cleanup!
The I Feel Pretty Bet: It takes some cojones to do this, but have the loser wear a dress for a day (assuming it's a guy who lost). C'mon, if an entire nation of Scots can do it, so can you.
The Totally Krossed Out Bet: Depending on how old you are, you might remember a rap group of kids from the 90's called Kris Kross who made a name for themselves by wearing their clothes backwards. Have the loser go a day wearing his/her clothes backwards. It'll be embarrassing when it comes time to use the restroom. Try to find another guy willing to help you undo your fly.
The Signs, Signs, Everywhere There's Signs Bet: I've played before where the loser had to wear a sign all day that read "Welcome to Loserville. Population: Me." You can switch that out with whatever embarrasing message is more appropriate for your league. The classic "I suck at fantasy football" is always a good choice.
The Hit Me Baby One More Time Bet: Have the loser take a video of themselves lip-synching a song of the winner's choosing and post it to YouTube. Can I suggest I Touch Myself by Divinyls, Girls Just Want To Have Fun by Cyndi Lauper, Tiny Dancer by Elton John, or Single Ladies (Put a Ring on It) by Beyonce?
The Don't Hat Me Bet: I've been on the receiving end of this bet. The loser has to wear a bizarre hat for a day. When I lost, I wore a crazy reindeer hat with blinking lights and God-awful music.
The Bow Before Me Bet: For an entire day (or week), the loser must bow anytime he/she is in the presence of the winner. If asked why you're bowing, you are only allowed to say "Because he is my king".
The Mary Kay Bet: The winner gets to put makeup on the loser. A photo or video has to be taken and posted to the league's message board for all to enjoy.
The American Idol Bet: For an entire day, the loser cannot speak normally. If the loser wants to say something, he/she must sing it.
These are just some ideas to take your weekly matchups to the next level. I have to believe that a little bruising of an ego is a million times better than having your leg hairs violently ripped out. Let's hope I don't have to find that one out on my own...