Monday, February 21, 2011

Game Journal: Redskins at Bengals, 12/14/2008

A good friend in the Cincinnati area, the Redskins playing at the Bengals, why not a road trip? The two day excursion continues, on day one we visited a bona fide Bengals bar, shopped downtown and drank whiskey out in the country. Day two was all about the game...


So much for sleeping in on a road trip away from the kids, like me, my good friend Lee from the old school of Charlottesville who relocated to Cincinnati where he got a good job and his wife's family lives, has three kids and he was sure to send them in at first light, there was fresh coffee, eggs and toast, we shook off the effects of a late night before packed our things for the game.

Our tickets and parking pass, note the distinctive pink color of the pass.

Lee's wife, she can fieldstrip a guinea fowl and grind wheat berries for bread at the same time, if it ever come to a The Road type situation I am headed to her house, she has canned enough food to last a year on full rations.

Lee's mascot for his 1-11-1 football team, and a plastic tiger.

Lee rocks the Volkwagen Eurovan, after taking it cross country from Charlottesville Virginia to Union Kentucky, around the time my own family was in the market for our first minivan, Lee gave me a summary review: A good car except for the high maintenance costs, rough ride and terrifying sway of the elevated center of gravity on hard turns or in high winds. So basically an expensive, uncomfortable deathtrap. As I was processing this information I could have sworn I saw him checking my expression out of the corner of his eye, leaving me later to wonder if the Eurovan is not an awesome car that all owners are sworn to keep secret through lies and misinformation.

Lee's wife's brother arrives and the party is ready to roll. As an fyi to the reader, most of the photos in this Game Journal, including this one, were taken with my crappy Nikon seven megapixel point and shoot, the balance of them were taken with Lee's awesome ten megapixel Canon point and shoot with the bigass lens, it should be obvious once we get to the game which are which, and a big thanks to Lee for letting me download his pictures before I left town.

As we were heading down the road from Union Kentucky to Cincinnati Ohio, we listened to the local pregame station, 102.7 FM, this video captures the end of a bit where one of the hosts plays at being a crazy young dude, after every silly thing he says we hear the sound effect of a beer can opening, it was really funny and unfortunately does not come across well on video. The second half of the video is some pregame statistics on the Redskins, Clinton Portis' last game against the Bengals was while he was with Denver in 2003, he had 120 yards and two touchdowns, also to this point Clinton's teams are 33-10 when he has 100 yards, as for Jason Campbell at this point thirteen games into the 2008 season, he has only six interceptions, during the 6-2 run to start the season Jason had eight touchdown passes and zero interceptions, in the 1-4 streak since, Jason has had three touchdowns and six interceptions, all six interceptions coming in the four losses.

The trip in to the stadium continues...

A view from Interstate 75 northbound heading into Cincinnati from the Kentucky side of oblivion. Despite the overcast skies and attendant dull grey appearance of everything, the weather was shaping up smashing for a December football game.

In this video I record the approach to Cincinnati from the south, picking up from the moment of the photo above. We see the sights of riverside Covington Kentucky, cross the Ohio River into Cincinnati Ohio, then circle toward Bengals Stadium, which is conveniently just off the highway. We admire the design of the stadium, witness Bengals fans shuffling dejectedly and observe a high concentration of Redskins attire before Lee runs a red light right in front of Cincinnati's finest. Throughout this video the printed hardcopy of Curly R's game preview for this game can be seen reflected on the dashboard.

We circled and parked in lot D and rolled out our tailgate, which consisted principally of four bottles of bourbon and a small tin of mixed nuts.

First thing I saw, couple of locals enjoying a beverage with the keepers oh the peace.

Your author, photo by Lee, pretty sure I was banging out a text message to lifetime Eagles fan, season ticket holder and Curly R reader/lurker Wilbert Montgomery who would be settling in to watch this 1:00 pm ET game, his beloved Eagles would not be playing until the next night, Monday against the Browns.

Your author again, with the John A. Roebling bridge in the background, see the day one game journal prelude for more detail on this major Cincinnati architectural feature.

Lee's wife and your author.

Your author with his hosts, Lee's wife and Lee, note Lee's holiday appropriate jackass headgear.

Continuing my perusal of the parking lot here we see a Redskins flag flying proudly at center and at right a dude in the back of a pickup wearing tiger striped pajamas and a hard hat talking on a mobile phone. Are you starting to get what kind of awesome Cincinnati is?

Three great photos coming here, all of Lee's wife's brother and Lee's wife with the Cincinnati skyline in the background:

Number one...

...number two, the classic me taking a picture of Lee taking a picture of his brother in law and wife...

... and number three, the picture of his brother in law and wife that I was taking a picture of him taking.

Moving on, I poured another drink and wandered the lot looking for Redskins fans.

I found these guise pretty quickly, let us break this one down:

  • Optimistic young dude superfan in a Redskins hoodie and Sean Taylor woolly hat? Check.
  • In burgundy and gold Redskins logo kicks? Check!
  • Wearing burgundy and gold Mardi Gras beads? CHECK.
  • Driving a 1993 Jetta with Redskins paint scheme and no hubcaps? CHECK!
  • Bag of trash no extra charge.

With a Dallas Sucks Virginia license plate? FLAWLESS VICTORY GENTLEMEN!

The 93 Jetta was accompanied to the game by this old VW bus in full Redskins regalia, this shot from the left...

... and from the right...

... and from behind with the full on BOSS HOGG imprimatur.

Bye bye burgundy and gold bunch of helium balloons, see you on the other side.

Checking my watch I see it is very close to kickoff though I do not believe we have consumed our rations of whiskey. I head back toward the tailgate.

A good look at the stadium from our tailgating spot, it really is a good looking stadium, wide open at both ends, so the upper decks do not connect like many modern football stadia, with a cantilever on the edge roof that recalls the multiuse stadiums from the 1960s, of which Cincinnati's Riverfront Stadium and Washington's RFK Stadium were two.

Endgame for the tailgate, time to put up, toss back and head in.

That is not Lee in anger, it is Lee after a straight pull off a bottle of whiskey that he then proffered to me saying, try it, it's great.

Last drinks before we head in, Lee shares two of his favorite whiskeys with me, the Bulleit Frontier Whiskey and the Pritchard's Double Barrel. As our party is passing the last round, two marketing goons from Cleveland based Key Bank approach and give us dollar bills in bank envelopes. Once in the stadium I spent that dollar first.

At last, with the game already under way behind us, time to head in. We made last second adjustments for the balmy weather and made for the stadium.

Lee and Lee's wife heading in to the stadium with Covington Kentucky across the Ohio River in the background.

One sad little Bengals glove, lying on the concourse all alone, missing its mate.

First of four obligatory I'm taking a picture of you taking a picture of me taking a picture of you taking a picture of me pictures.

Number two...

... number three...

... and mercifully number four.

The Hogettes were in town to root on their beloved Redskins, or at least a midwest facsimile of the Hogettes, I was not able to get a quote.

Still heading to our seats, now down under the upper deck on the way to our section we ran into this couple of Bengals fans, including the guy with bag reading BUNGALS over his head, they were more than happy to pose for the Redskins blogger.

Finally down to our seats, section 111, row 8, nine minutes left in the first quarter, Washington was already down 7-0.

I grab a quick pano of the stadium from our seats, it really is a good looking stadium.

More photos from right when we say down...

Here is injured Cincinnati quarterback Carson Palmer, after partially tearing a ligament in his throwing elbow in September he still has not played, in his place in this game is Ryan Fitzpatrick. If you click out this photo to full size over on the Redskins sideline you can see, from right to left, since the action is over at the Bengals goal line to my right, Danny Smith, Colt Brennan, Andre Carter, Shawn Springs, Joe Bugel and Mike Sellers. Interestingly enough I cannot find head coach Jim Zorn in this photo.

The Bengals cheerleaders, in Naughty Santa attire, this photo also captures the theming of the stadium, lots of bright orange and black with the Bengal stripes appearing from under the team insignia as though ripped open by claws, and the jungle high grass of the creature's habitat.

A wider angle shot of the same corner at the same time, this one by Lee and capturing the open corner of the stadium, facing into Cincinnati.

Another one by Lee, this one captures the escalator up to the club and suite levels, Lee has framed it as an escalator to nowhere, with a pier of the John A. Roebling Bridge across the Ohio River in the background. The escalator can be seen in context in the pano video above.

Couple of Redskins fans in our section, there was no shortage of Redskins jerseys at this game.

Still first quarter and things are already starting to get out of hand.

3:10 left fist quarter, Bengals now up 14-0, Redskins just about to commit their third straight three and out. Dude I love my old Santana Moss jersey as well, it is from 2005, this Clinton Portis jersey cannot be more than four years old. Looks rode hard. Time to get a new one dude.

3:05 left first quarter, Clinton Portis over right guard for two yards, photo by Lee.

My face when Clinton Portis is averaging less than two yards per carry and the Redskins have a fumble and three three and outs on four possessions so far. Photo by Lee.

1:16 left first quarter, Jason Campbell finds Chris Cooley for a four yard gain... on third and eight. Nother punt. Photo by Lee.

12:09 left second quarter, Bengals huddling, second and ten on the Redskins seventeen yard line, photo by Lee...

... and the Redskins preparing to defend on the same play. Photo by Lee.

12:01 left second quarter, two plays later and the Bengals are still stuck on the Redskins seventeen yard line, not a lot of great football happening so far. Photo by Lee.

Two photo sequence of the Shayne Graham's 32 yard field goal to put the Bengals up 17-0 with 11:24 left in the second quarter, photos by Lee.

About this time Lee came back from the bathroom, normally I would not be compelled to tell you about my friend coming back from the potty, however Lee came back with an artifact:

The WhoDey Revolution urinal cake. A brief history:

There were a couple of guys that started a Bengals blog in February 2008, it was called WhoDey Revolution and it had a very simple reason for being: To improve the Cincinnati Bengals football team.

Immediately I felt a kinship with WhoDey Revolution, as Curly R was founded on the exact same principle two years earlier in 2006, to make the Redskins a better football team.

There was a major difference between the two concerns though. While Curly R was geared toward reporting and commentary, the journalistic act of relaying events and placing them in a context of good-for-team or bad-for-team, WhoDey Revolution was principled on demands and action, breaking down team improvement into steps and harassing the team when progress is not obvious.

They began with a manifesto and moved quickly into a series of actions dubbed Project Mayhem, actions intended to show the team a section of its fanbase, fed up with mediocrity and the poor stewardship of owner Mike Brown, was willing to show its defiance directly to the team, force Mike Brown to remember that, while he may own the team, the Bengals actually belong to the fans.

WhoDey Revolution's Project Mayhem actions so far have included reporting Mike Brown to the Bengals Stadium game day Jerk Line, buying a billboard demanding the team hire a real actual general manager and posting it right outside the the team's practice facility, calling for a boycott of all Bengals merchandise and stadium concessions, calling on ticket holders to donate their tickets and stay home on gameday and encouraging fans to carry signs with messages of the Revolution into a road game.

For the Redskins-Bengals game, WhoDey had a special Project Mayhem: Recruit dozens of volunteers to mule in hundreds of urinal cakes with a custom message and place them in the stadium's urinals, thereby forcing male gamegoers to see the message whenever they go pee pee.

The message on these urinal cakes reads 98-196-1 Get Pissed! This is the record of the Bengals since Mike Brown took control of the team in 18 years ago in 1990, though if you read the page on WhoDey Revolution the record reads 98-186-1 (op. cit.).

I reached out to the WhoDey Revolution guys through the secret underground railroad of NFL bloggers and had planned to carry in some cakes, because we were running late I never hooked up with them. No one knew in advance what the gag would be so when Lee came back from the loo in the second quarter with a urinal cake I thought it was brilliant and Lee assured me it was thoroughly washed.

Moving on...

5:32 left second quarter, second and seven from the Cincinnati thirteen yard line, this play went to Clinton Portis up the middle, on the next play Jason Campbell found Santana Moss with a ten yard bullet for a touchdown to put the Redskins on the board, 17-7 Bengals. Photo by Lee.

4:43 left second quarter, as you can see Lee's wife was well on her way while Lee was still ramping up. His most obnoxious had not yet arrived.

Nearing half time, Lee's wife's brother and Lee's wife are engaging in a conversation over me while I bang out another text or tweet on my phone. The game was just not that exciting and lots of people were asking me for updates. Photo by Lee.

Two minutes left second quarter, waiting for the Redskins to come to the line at the Cincinnati 43 yard line. Along the Redskins sideline in the background you can see cornerbacks Fred Smoot and Shawn Springs, both seated, kick returner Rock Cartwright, rookie cornerback Justin Tryon, special teams coach Danny Smith, safety LaRon Landry, also seated, rookies Fred Davis, a tight end, and Devin Thomas, a receiver, once again no Jim Zorn visible. Photo by Lee.

The ensuing play, Jason Campbell, right, is about to hand off to Clinton Portis for nine yards.

Next play, 1:32 left second quarter, second and two from the Bengals 36 yard line, you can get a good look at the GU sticker on receiver Santana Moss' helmet, worn all year by most teams to honor late NFLPA union chief Gene Upshaw, who died suddenly from pancreatic cancer just four months ago, while sitting at home in August he began to feel ill, after some cajoling his wife got him to go to the emergency room. He was diagnosed with the illness right then and there and was dead three days later. While we are moving about our lives thinking the end will never come for us, or if it will that it is still a long way off, think about this: If I publish this Saturday and I get Gene's diagnosis that means I am dead by Tuesday THINK ABOUT THAT FOR A FUCKING MINUTE.

Finishing the play which was Clinton Portis through the middle for five yards.

Me and the WhoDey Revolution urinal cake. Who would think to smuggle in three hundred urinal cakes to a football game just to make a point? Freaking serious football fans, that is who. Photo by Lee.

Halftime mercifully arrived and we took off to check out the stadium and find a beverage.

Wandering the halls.

Lee taking a picture of himself peeing on an unrescued WhoDey Revolution urinal cake.

We found some really great awful dark beer on the concourse and I felt pressure to have one. Everywhere we wandered, Bengals fans were pleasant if somewhat dispirited, even their team was winning 17-7 at the half. I mean come on, the Bungals were 1-11-1. Photo by Lee.

Lee's wife, Lee's wife's brother and your author outside our section at the end of halftime, photo by Lee.

6:27 left third quarter, Redskins ball, second and goal from the Cincinnati one yard line, fullback Mike Sellers carries it through the middle for the touchdown, as the Washington extra point team comes onto the field, in the foreground Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis tosses the red challenge flag, I try to get a look at the replay on the big board in the opposite end zone, it does not come out on video and I have no idea what happened on the play. This is also when Lee started to go off the rails and he gets his first taste of dealing with a big time NFL blogger.

During the aforementioned challenge review, no football significance to this photo other than there is a fairly elegant looking woman two rows in front of me wearing a houndstooth pattern coat and standing next to a slob in a tattered Redskins jersey.

Still during the challenge review, as the game went on Lee's wife and I began to have discussion on deeper levels, and I swore to hold her confidence, even if she does not remember our talk.

The touchdown was overturned and the play ruled no forward progress, the Redskins were back on third and one from the Cincinnati one yard line...

After giving Mike Sellers, a guy who had all of four carries in thirteen and a half games so far this season, a shot on short and goal and he did not make it, Redskins head coach Jim Zorn elects to RUN THE SAME EXACT PLAY AGAIN, only this time Mike Sellers does not not make it into the end zone, Mike fumbles into the end zone, the ball is recovered by Cincinnati, as you can tell from the jubilant crowd. Jim Zorn elects to challenge the play which is not overturned and the Washington gets two plays from the Cincinnati one yard line and gets nahthing. Lee continues his downward spiral and the kid sitting in front of Lee is obviously self conscious about his giant fur hat, once he realizes I am running video he removes it all cool and tries to play it off.

Me filming that last video, from the look on my face I have not yet realized not only was it not a touchdown, it was a turnover, photo by Lee.

Waiting around on the ultimately unsuccessful Jim Zorn challenge.

Lee's wife's brother seems less than thrilled with Lee, who took this picture, which would not necessarily surprise me at this stage of the game. Lee's wife is gesturing to him while talking to me as if to say, take my brother here for example. I do not recall what it was that he was exemplifying at this moment.

5:20 left third quarter, Bengals ball after the Mike Sellers turnover, second and three from the Cincinnati 27 yard line, Cedric Benson carries the Redskins defensive line for one yard. Photo by Lee.

At this point Lee decides, what the hell there are just not enough photos and videos of Ben in the world, so he goes on a run of me..

... one with beer bottle in hand, sky in background...

... closeup of ongoing Major Talk with Lee's wife...

... one of the better photos of me in a while if you hold the computer back a little further, me best friend is another few feet...

... and going out of my way to make some long, involved and likely unnecessary point.

And this was not the end, two videos at the end of the run, besides my mug, each notable for a different reason:

Continuing to keep the camera on me, at least temporarily, Lee, with the camera in portrait for some reason, captures a moment of my ongoing MT with his wife before losing interest, he quickly finds the Bengals cheerleaders in the north end zone and with audible grunts and mouthbreathing nearly falls over himself trying to zoom in hard on one particular blonde.

This video also gives Lee a convenient opportunity to demonstrate a pretty cool feature of his camera, a Canon PowerShot S5, you can take a snapshot during the video, the video pauses to show the shot, then resumes playing video, and the snapshot is created as a separate still image file.

This is the photo of Bengals cheerleader ass he snapped during the video.

In this video, Lee requests I repeat what at the time was about the only statistic a Redskins fan could hold onto, despite trailing 17-10 in the fourth quarter, Washington still had a more than five minute advantage in time of possession. He snaps an in-video photo of me and his wife right before telling me I can use this for the blog. Which I did.

And this is the rather unfortunate picture he took during that video, if Lee's wife is reading this she needs to remember that Lee gave me explicit permission to post this on the blog and under Ohio law I am compelled to do so.

At this point Lee has completed his transformation.

Three hours was all it took.

At this point he is just haranguing me.

Noted without additional comment.

Giggling to himself.

Showing me a picture of me, that photo is posted above.

So proud of himself.

There was still a game going on, it was looking bad for the Redskins who had been stuck on ten points since halftime.

2:25 left fourth quarter, Bengals kicker Shayne Graham kicking a 45 yard field goal to push Cincinnati to a 20-10 lead. Of note, Jim Zorn finally makes an appearance in the background of an action shot, see back right.

The Redskins got the ball back with just over two minutes left in the game and trailing by ten points, at this point I am ready for the end, another weak emergency hurry up series punctuated by an incomplete on fourth down deep in their own territory. But no! Rock Cartwright takes the kickoff 87 yards from the goal line to the Cincinnati thirteen yard line, at this point a quick score and the Redskins can still recover an onsides kick and make another score, if ever there was a time for two minutes of competent football it was now.

Alas it was not to be, here Clinton Portis takes the handoff with 2:07 left in regulation, the Redskins have no timeouts, for some reason instead of trying to make a quick strike on first down before the two minute warning they run the ball and give up the seven seconds. Photo by Lee.

Two more plays, both incompletes and Redskins kicker Shaun Suisham lines up for a 36 yard field goal, even with the clock stopped and the full time between plays Washington is not able to get the play off and they commit a delay of game penalty. Move it back five yards and Shaun still nails it, now the Redskins are trailing by seven points with just over a minute and a half left in regulation and no timeouts.

And the fans are filing out of the Escalator From Nowhere, pier of the John A. Roebling Bridge in background, photo by Lee.

Last seconds winding down, just taking some end of game photos and footage. Photo by Lee.

Time runs out on the game, Bengals win 20-13 to move to 2-11-1 while the Redskins fall to 7-7 after a 6-2 start. This is footage of the immediate aftermath, including celebration by what remains of the Cincinnati crowd, the prayer circle, players wandering around, equipment crews packing out and a final headshot of me closing out Curly R game coverage.

The aforementioned postgame prayer circle, a little bigger in Cincinnati than in other cities.

Your blogger capturing the video just above.

Then from out of nowhere was a trio of cute local girls, like legitimately awesome cute football chicks, I love women that love football. Note of course that they are posing for a different photographer.

Check out her tail, my bet is someone is going to be pulling that tail tonight.

We left the stands and started to head out of the stadium, there was much reveling and rambunctiousness from the remaining fans, though as previously established, the Bengals fans were polite.

This guy seemed inordinately happy to meet a Redskins fan.

Here he is again, I have no idea why my Redskins jersey is off at this point.

We ran into a cluster of Redskins fans and we began to commiserate, I learned in fairly short order that it was Aaron, Josh and John, the guys behind Harry Hog Football, the Redskins fan podcast, blog and social network. I knew of them and they knew of Curly R so we compared notes and became Hollywood friends.

Redskins blogger summit at Bengals Stadium.

For whatever reason I had my jersey off, I removed my camera bag from its secure place on my belt and set it down on a condiment stand, I was not far from the camera at any time, even when the overjoyed guy was insisting on pictures. As I was getting to know my Redskins fan podcast counterparts I realized it was missing from its condiment stand perch. Immediately a cold shot went through me, not because the camera was missing, for that camera was already three hard years old and bought with a gift card received at an obligatory and uncomfortable going away luncheon at my previous day job, the camera had been good in 2005 and now it was barely serviceable.

No the reason the camera missing caused me distress was of course the pictures on the camera, I had invested two whole days on this trip and was not happy about losing those pictures.

Then one of my new Harry Hog friends spoke up, he had seen it lying there and taken it to the gate guards right behind us for lost and found.

That camera those guys gave you, it's mine. Really, can you describe it?

It's the one on the three game losing streak.

Yep that's a match, here you go.

Harry Hog Football and The Curly R together, four guys that spend way too much time talking about the Redskins.

So we discussed how we could work together, they wanted to get me on the podcast, I wanted to get into more multimedia...

...when suddenly two wild Bengals fans appeared and got into our photo!

We exchanged contact info, or more accurately they gave me a business card, which for some reason after three years I still do not have, and we went on our way, heading back to the lot.

On the way out we passed the DALSUK 1993 Jetta and Boss Hogg VW microbus, bumper visible at top, tailgate, those guys were setting back up for postgame activity with no immediate plans of leaving short of the law making them, this is their Redskins themed serving table.

One for the do it yourselfers out there, a car battery, AC-DC converter and rabbit ears antenna sitting in a Dale Earnhardt camping chair, all connected to a seventeen inch flat panel TV showing the Steelers at Ravens game, 3:44 left first quarter with the game tied at zero all, 93 Jetta at right.

Wrapping it up in the lot and we are out.

As easy as it was in, it was easy out, we headed back across into Kentucky across the Roebling Bridge, I got these last three looks at Bengals Stadium as we were heading out:

It really is a good looking stadium, the Redskins would be so lucky to have one like it, and the location cannot be beat, situated right in downtown Cincinnati and walking distance from the nearest suburb in Kentucky.

So the game was over and we were leaving, but we were not ready to call it a day on our game experience, we tuned back in to the local game coverage radio station to see what they were saying..

The official EAT IT REDSKINS segment, all about how awful the Redskins have been the last four or five weeks (actually it was three losses in a row, not four or five), it was not actually 88 yards passing for Jason Campbell but rather 88 yards RUSHING for Cedric Benson. And a musical question about what are they saying about Jim Zorn, Clinton Portis and Jason Campbell back in Washington, the answer to all of it is, Not Good.

Continuing with our postgame ride through Covington...

Continuing the way out of the stadium in Covington Kentucky, we ponder the strength of the smell of the urinal cake I took from the stadium, it was really stinking up the car. We then stop for some snacks.

And that is the photo and video journal of my trip. But we were not done, the trip continued. NOT PICTURED:

Our trip to the Kentucky bar where we got Kentucky size bourbon pours, the WhoDey urinal cake was so smelly that I was certainly not going to bring it in to the bar, and Lee would not let me leave it in the car so I put it on top of the front passenger side tire in the wheel well, I had forgotten about it when we came out, I did not retrieve it and it was left in the parking lot. We then went on to one of Lee's favorite upscale Chinese places to get some takeout, while we were waiting we sat at the bar and drank sake after sake, as it turns out we sort of forgot to order so we had to wait a little longer for the food and so had some more sakes, at some point Lee disappeared, at first we thought he was in the bathroom, when he did not reappear for some time we went looking for him, finally I found him in the car, which was by the way was still in the ten minute takeout spot an hour later, Lee was quote resting unquote in the back, he had reached his exit point, his homing beacon went off and he disappeared. I went back in to get the food and wrangle Lee's wife and Lee's wife's brother, the food was on the bar, we finished our sakes and left. Everyone was pretty well in the bag, it was a good thing we had a designated driver, as we were pulling out of the spot the manager lady came rushing out with a bill yelling You no pay! You no pay! We looked around at each other, well the awake ones that is, I thought Lee's wife had paid, she thought Lee or I had paid, it was an innocent mistake. Lee's wife gave me her credit card, I went back in and paid and came back to find Lee puking into the back of his own van, he assured me he was feeling a little under the weather, after some drama about losing Lee's wife's credit card we got back on the road and made it back to Union and feasted on our Chinese. Water up, lay down, go sleep.

Next day, Monday, I got up, more fresh coffee and country breakfast, Lee drove me to the airport, I got on the plane and quivered for two hours in my seat, arrive home, go sleep.

A great two days, thanks to Lee and Lee's wife for a great time, for great hospitality, for the tickets, I am already looking forward to the 2012 season when the Redskins and Bengals do this again.

All photos and video by me or my gracious host and good friend Lee.