Worth Waiting For
When I moved to the Washington, DC area, I refused to become involved with the Redskins, despite the fact that they were my new home team, because I didn’t approve of their coach, George Allen. It didn’t matter to me that the team was doing pretty well, or that the vast majority of people within a two- hour drive of the Beltway were gaga over the team, and absolutely awestruck by the aforementioned Mr. Allen. My objections to his approach to the game were so fundamental that getting close to him or his team was out of the question.
Mind you, I hadn’t become a cold fish. The minute George Allen left the Redskins, I was willing to begin making an emotional investment in them. In fact, through some awfully lean years, I watched every single one of their games.
A breakthrough finally came one year shortly before the annual NFL Draft. It had become painfully apparent from the way they were manhandled during the playing season that my Redskins weren’t going to get much of anywhere in the game until they put some big fellas up front who could block. “Guys,” I said to the sports page of my newspaper (a well-established means of communicating with professional athletes), “this year we need to focus on drafting three things: linemen, linemen, and linemen.” Not long afterward, the team announced its official draft objectives: offensive linemen, defensive linemen, and running back (singular). I was ecstatic: they had listened to me!
That draft turned out to be the genesis of Washington’s now-legendary “Hogs,” who in short order powered the team to their first victory in the Super Bowl.
Show me a Jane Austen novel where pure, untainted love triumphs more sweetly in the end.