The Loop

Metaphors

The symbolism of a burst sewage pipe drenching Washington Football Team fans is off the charts

September 13, 2021

UPDATE: We are told the leak was from a rain water storage tank, which is marginally better than an actual sewage line. Nonetheless, the metaphor holds ... unlike the pipes.

We are happy to report the first Sunday of the 2021 NFL season is in the books, and it was a doozy. Rookies balled out, the Chiefs came back, there was a game-winning boot deep in OT, and Aaron Rodgers vindicated a billion haters. Storylines poured from the heavens like sweet raindrops in the desert, but nowhere more literally than FedEx Field, where Washington Football Team fans looked up in the middle of their season opener against the Chargers to find a sewage pipe raining down upon them.

If there was a more symbolic moment in football this weekend, we didn’t see it. This is not to cast aspersions on WFT fans. They’re not responsible for their front office’s behavior over the years, nor do they deserve more punishment than a leaky sewage line emptying its contents into their $15 nachos. It is, however, a poignant metaphor for Dan Snyder and his cronies, who not only defended a racist nickname long after it’s expiration date, but are said to have presided over one of the most toxic work environments in America, rife with sexual harassment, intimidation, and the repeated explotation of cheerleaders.

If the failure of the Washington Football Team front office needed a metaphor, a sewage pipe leaching into every last fiber of every last thing surrounding the team—from the tormented clerical workers to the dismal stadium to the offensive mascot—is as apt as it gets. To make matters even worse, while feces coursed into the lower deck like Niagara Falls on Sunday, starting quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick, a picture of longevity over his 16-year NFL career, went down with a hip injury.

When it rains, it pours.