Once in a while we are blessed with a visual representation so perfectly accurate that it can’t be ignored. And, indeed, that is what we have here, captured on video: a burst sewage pipe at FedEx Field, leaking filthy shit-water on paying fans.
Yes, for a change, this week’s biggest sewage-related mishap in Washington was not on the field, but directly above the heads of some poor, unwitting spectators. They thought they’d be watching a football game, but instead they got drenched in a literal puddle of human waste, according to fans who experienced the deluge.
The metaphors don’t really get more crisp than this. Dan Snyder’s beleaguered club has been raining down turds on the Washington faithful for years. The artists formerly known as a racial slur have not won a Super Bowl since the days of Joe Gibbs and Mark Rypien in 1991. They have not won a playoff game of any sort since 2005, when they went 10-6 in the regular season and defeated the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in a Wild Card game before falling to the Seahawks in the divisional round.
Since then the franchise has been, well, a burst sewage pipe, mired in controversy of its own making. Snyder paid out a reported $1.9 million in 2009 to settle a sexual misconduct lawsuit involving the franchise — while maintaining that the accusations were “meritless.” Fast forward to 2020, when an independent investigator determined the organization’s workplace atmosphere was so egregious that it “led to key executives believing that disrespectful behavior and more serious misconduct was acceptable in the workplace.” The franchise was fined another $10 million in the wake of those findings.
Snyder, for his part in the latter controversy, said he had “learned a lot” about how his club operated. So at least it was a teachable moment. In the meantime, the multibillionaire sued a 72-year-old woman for $66,000 after she backed out of a 10-year season ticket agreement. He won a default judgment because she was unable to afford a lawyer.
The Washington Football Team has denied whatever leaked out of the pipe was sewage, claiming instead that it was rainwater that fell on fans.
And yesterday the squad lost its season opener, 20-16, to the Chargers. A burst sewage pipe, alright.