On Thursday at the strike of 10 a.m. ET, FXX will drop an absurdly daunting challenge into the laps of channel surfers by airing all 552 episodes of The Simpsons in a row. (In case you’re wondering, two people once made it 86 hours and 37 minutes through a Simpsons marathon before Fox ended the contest in a record-breaking tie.)
How can you binge 25 seasons of the animated comedy just 12 days, bearing witness to every Homer “Woo hoo!”, Barney belch, and grisly Scratchy disemboweling? Hydration, meal breaks, micro-naps, and multiple empty DVRs will help, for starters. But you also might want to check out these 15 survival tips, given to EW by the writers of The Simpsons.
15. After every episode, make sure to thank Jebus.
13. Practice saying “this is when the show started going downhill,” starting midway through the first episode.
12. DRINKING GAME: Drink a beer every time Homer drinks a beer.
11. Stretch for at least 20 minutes before doing the Bartman.
10. Every time Homer and Marge “snuggle,” think how nice it would be if you had any kind of human relationship.
9. Every time Homer and Marge fight, be thankful you don’t have any kind of human relationship.
8. WASHINGTON AND COLORADO RESIDENTS ONLY: During Episode 420, you know what to do.
7. Take a quick break during “Deep Space Homer” to welcome our new insect overlords.
6. Remember: you can sing along to the Stonecutters song, but you’ll never understand why Steve Guttenberg was a star
5. Every time Maggie does something cute, think about how you could be spending time with your own children instead of watching the Simpsons marathon.
3. If you get depressed midway through the marathon, remember: “You are Lisa Simpson.” (Lisa Simpson only.)
2. Keep your TV room stocked with alcohol, the cause of (and solution to) all of life’s problems.
1. Follow Homer’s lead and steal cable—you’ll get the whole marathon for free!