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Accentuate the negative?

By Mark Solway | September 13th, 2006

I want to make a quick distinction. Being pessimistic does not make you pragmatic, it does not lend you some special or unique insight and it does not make you the sighted man in the land of the slavish and blind. Too much of the recent fan response to the Redskins first game seems to be predicated on the notion that only those fans who embrace a bleak future have a grasp on reality. Those who choose to remain positive or upbeat or even hopeful, are simpletons, adrift in a sea of unrealistic expectations. Those who predict a season of misery act as if their opinions are rooted in some undeniable logic that the rest of us either refuse or are unable to comprehend. Please, come off it. Was any Redskins fan pleased with Monday night’s performance? I have yet to meet one who was. The team fell well short of my expectations for it, especially on the defensive side of the ball in those crucial third and long situations. So, to be clear, I am acknowledging the team’s performance was not impressive … but … it’s one game. Two halves, four quarters, ONE hour. How can anyone possibly make a sweeping determination based on that? You don’t even have enough empirical evidence to cite a trend at this point. I’m not saying that the more positive proclamations have any more validity than the negative ones, just that nobody knows at this point. Yet we have a contingent of fans who felt some turbulence and are predicating a plane crash with no survivors. And if someone were to turn to said fans and say “Hey, that wasn’t fun but I’m still optimistic about our chances of landing comfortably” they would be dismissed as menial drones, incapable of criticizing the deity known as Gibbs. I’m not going to bother citing the reasons Gibbs has earned my patience, suffice to say that he has. Yes, even after a loss like the one on Monday night, I choose to remain upbeat. I’ll say it again: I am optimistic about this team. You might disagree with me but that doesn’t make you the savant to my idiot. It makes you depressing and pessimistic. You can choose to suffer through a season and wallow in your self-imposed despair and maybe you’ll turn out to be right about this team. But misery loves company and I’m not coming with you. Go…

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