COLUMBIA — By 9:30 p.m. Sunday, Rosemary Waelder had been serving food and drinks for nearly 11 hours at Buffalo Wild Wings.
At least 10 TV screens were tuned to Super Bowl XLII. But Waelder was too busy scrambling from table to table, refilling water glasses and checking on customers, to keep up with the game.
Fans began trickling into Buffalo Wild Wings, 3908 Peachtree Drive, about 4 p.m. At exactly 4:30, all channels were switched to the pre-game show.
At 4:55, many tables were still empty, and a few servers stood by the bar and the door.
But 10 minutes later, at least seven people were standing in each carry-out line. The restaurant was beginning to fill, and the loud buzz of conversation clouded the pre-game show announcers.
Around 6 p.m., only nine tables were empty, and the boos and cheers were starting to clash around the room.
The Super Bowl was well under way.
Waelder said that missing most of the game didn’t bother her.
“My boyfriend is out of town, and I would have just watched the game with him and his friends,” she said. “I’d rather work and make some money anyway.”
Even though she was working, Waelder was able to catch the exciting final minutes of the game.
“It was the best part,” Waelder said.
Since the Green Bay Packers didn’t make it, she was rooting for the Giants.