Morning Look: Got Suishams?
If it wasn't obvious from the television box, the atmosphere in Ford Field yesterday contained all the bubbling energy of month-old ginger ale. It was awesome. For about 13 reasons, which I'll chronicle later, I feel nothing but sad empathy for greater Detroit this morning.
What signs of life there were in the concourse were mostly provided by Redskins fans. And, in many cases, by large extended families of Redskins players. Like Team Suisham, a group of about 200 family and friends of a certain kicker who chartered three buses and drove the 90 minutes from Wallaceburg, Ontario. Many of their Suisham jerseys were not the official Reebok variety--these come cheaper--but the end zone stands were literally dotted with No. 6 shirts.
"See, here comes another little batch," said Brett Blondie, Shaun's cousin, as three more Suishams wandered down the stairs. It was like being in a strange dream where everyone you see looks like your third-grade teacher, except in this case everyone you saw looked like a Canadian place kicker. As for the frequent mispronunciations of Shazzam's last name, "that's a common thing even in our home town," said his aunt, Patti Blondie.
That town, by the way, is population 11,000 or so, meaning the 200 people at Ford Field represented almost 2 percent of Wallaceburg's population. I asked him if the Redskins were Wallaceburg's favorite NFL team; "they better be," Suisham said. I asked for a full accounting of which relatives were there yesterday; "everybody," he said.
"I mean, everybody was here. I've got a great home town that really supports what I do, and I really appreciate it."
Elsewhere, there were dozens of Redskins fans wearing homemade t-shirts that read "Got Swag?" on the front with a 95 on the back. Those would be the family and friends of Flint native Chris Wilson, who had the shirts made himself. About 20 family members came up in one bus, while 30 to 40 high school friends rode up in another. Our models here are cousins Kyla and Colton Broome, who were willing to grant Wilson his swag.
"He's been a character forever," his dad, Ed Wilson, told me. I asked Chris whether he has abundant swag.
"Yes sir," he said. "I've got a lot. Maybe more than I need."
"Yes he do," said Cornelius Griffin with a laugh.
"Maybe more than I need," Wilson repeated.
I mean, at least someone in that place had swag. It could really use swag pumps by the hot dog stands, or swag sprinklers, or swag carpeting, or something.
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