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Jerry Springer on How to Stop a Family Brawl

The infamous talk show host steps in before the chairs fly at your holiday dinner.

Illustrated for Maxim by John Euland | Licensed to Alpha Media Group 2013

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“Holiday meals are full of sloppy foods like mashed potatoes and gravy, so if you know there’s going to be drama and things might get thrown, stick to serving solids. And for the record, when it comes to flying objects, the last time a chair was actually thrown on our show was 17 years ago. Security always gets there in time.”

Ditch Politics
“Having a couple of glass­es of wine is no rea­son to suddenly proclaim, ‘You know what, maybe I do like George W. Bush,’ at the Thanksgiving table—even if it’s long been a source of internal conflict. You can have a heat­ed discussion about baseball, but skip topics like political philosophy if they’re going to ruffle your uncle’s feathers.”

Pick a Confidant
“If a 21-year-old girl wants to tell her family, ‘Hey, I’m a stripper,’ during Passover seder, she’s already set on her decision, and it’s more like a Boom! Take it or leave it announcement. If you’re actually seeking understanding, don’t shock people. Choose the relative you trust most to tell first in a private moment.”

Keep Secret Affairs Secret
“Cheating is the top thing that gets peo­ple riled up. When you realize My other half isn’t taking me seriously, you are going to swear, scream, and maybe punch the other guy. So if you’re sleeping with your brother’s wife and need to let everyone know, you’d better be standing by the door.”

Just Calm the F*#! Down
“Guests are never angry with me, but real life isn’t like TV, where I can step in and defuse the situation. So if there’s only one person getting angry, tell him you two can discuss it, personally, another time. But if your whole family has been hoping for an altercation, you’re going to have a brawl.”

Learn How To Avoid Hosting the Holidays, and check out 3 Holidays That Are Tougher On Your Body Than St. Patrick's Day.