People usually only wear black when something died
What is happening right now in Redskinsland is awesome to behold, the coalescing of years of pent up anger and frustration by fans, media and football peers into one gigantic slow motion crash of a season.
After firing a guy in Norval Turner that needed a change of scenery anyway Dan Snyder hired Marty Schottenheimer, a move applauded by a huge majority of Redskins fans at the time and with the benefit of hindsight I might even say was the last truly good decision Dan Snyder made.
But he lost his nerve and came to resent Marty for the power that he had granted Marty, he fired Marty and hired Steve Spurrier, the wunderkind Dan had been infatuated with and tried to hire in 2001 before settling on Marty Schottenheimer.
Steve Spurrier was the anti-Marty Schottenheimer, not only was he no threat to the decision making management regime, Steve only had a passing acquaintance with the defensive side of the ball. Steve was gone after two disastrous seasons.
And just as he had with Marty after shitcanning Norval Turner with three games to go and in playoff contention, Dan drew an ace and brought back Joe Gibbs. As we move further away those four years will not age well, turns out bringing back Joe Gibbs was really about making you feel good about being a Redskins fan, not about great football because there was not a lot of great football during that time; Joe Gibbs was paid five million dollars a year to provide air cover for whatever decisions Dan Snyder wanted to make, Joe just got up there and took the hit.
After Joe Gibbs left, no one wanted the job of Redskins coach. So we got Jim Zorn, a man who had never been a head coach or the institutional playcaller, ever. After an 8-8 season characterized by a hot start and a cold finish, a great defense, an aging offensive line and solid progress by the quarterback, we were treated to a huge defensive spending spree and no new blue chip players to replace the team's aging offensive tackles.
One was cut, the other is a shadow of himself and is not playing this week. The remaining players blocking for the quarterback look like they are on roller skates, being pushed back by one of the worst defenses in the league last week.
Last year's second year receivers could not catch swine flu, Clinton Portis runs like he is ankle deep in heavy gold chains and the team finally figured out how to take away Jason Campbell's best option, make Chris Cooley block on every down.
The defense could not stop a child from falling into the commode. I get winded just looking at Albert Haynesworth. Carlos Rogers' hands are so hard his mom will not him. The special teams unit does not counsel its players to keep away from the return man for fear of getting legally blocked into him, even I knew that rule.
The end of the road is finally here. The team is in complete shambles, if you are a player might as well start wearing a wig and makeup under your helmet to freak out the other team, start doing postgame interviews in a mesh tanktop speaking with a bad Kiwi accent, wear a jemima rag in and out of Redskins Park and start a pool on the first player to drop a stress crap on the floor.
It must get worse before it gets better, many thousands of Redskins fans have been saying this for years, sadly for us the time is finally here, as bad as it seems now we are not even at bottom.
A deathcult support infrastructure is springing up all around us, what Mark Newgent first labeled the Burgundy Revolution has taken hold in the mold of the Whodey Revolution in Cincinnati.
A new site called Redskins Fan Exodus has a five point pledge, on my honor I will accept this pledge. A blog has taken the name Burgundy Revolution and they are agitating, they have asked for a blackout this week when the Chiefs come to play at Redskins Stadium. I endorse this action, as follows:
Do not go to the game if you do not have to. All games are already sold out so Redskins fans are in no danger of a blackout.
If you are going to the game, wear black. I would love to see empty seats and fans in black on panning shots.
Do not buy anything at the game. If you want to buy a beer or two I will look the other way.
Do not cheer, even if things go well. Unlike my new comrades at Burgundy Revolution, I will not blindly cheer for the players, the vortex of suckitude has everyone in its grasp and I will not cut the players any slack, be fucking professionals and quit getting your asses beat out there.
Principle of the Revolution: He may own the team, he is but a steward, the Redskins truly belong to the football fans.
London blackout, 1940: Margaret Bourke-White / LIFE Magazine from here.