One For the Ages…

I hadn't meant to mention that I turned 50 on September 10, 2001 (the day after the Charger debacle and the day before the Real Debacle). The more I think about it, however, it's really sinking in just how freakin' old that is. A half a century. Five decades. Two score and ten. The difference between Annette Funicello and the Backstreet Boys. Several geological periods…

There's a young 50 and there's olllddd 50. I'm in the latter category. And there's no doubt. The Redskins have aged me. I first noticed it back when the team lost Super Bowl in ‘83 to the Raiders (after beating them in the regular season that year) – I developed some arthritis in my knees. It wasn't serious and I didn't link the two.

After Joe Gibbs left, the team went South and my body began it's rapid deterioration. I didn't make the connection when Norv's signing and the receding of my hairline coincided. But that 3-13 season in ‘94 (even worse than Petitbon's before him) should have been a smoking gun.

You remember the 7-1 start in '96 when the troops folded and failed to make the playoffs? That was the year my optometrist said I needed bifocals (blended ones, so you can't tell from looking at me that I have them – the trade-off is that I can't read with them).

You'd have thought I'd have wised up. But after our 0-7 start in '98, I got a hearing aid. Just one…a discreet one (yeah, right) for my left ear. Still, I didn't correlate my deterioration with that of my team. Last year's debacle, however, led to another hearing aid, this time for the right ear. I lay the blame for this squarely where it belongs…Jeff George.

And now we're at 0-4, the laughingstocks of the league (I did tell you, didn't I, that a Bengal fan at a sports bar looked at my Redskin cap and snickered). At this point, it's really a race between me and Bob Hope.

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