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Patience Pays Off And The SI Vault Is Awesome

Posted by Matt Terl on March 12, 2009 – 6:26 pm

The March 16th, 2009, issue of Sports Illustrated features something you don’t see every day: a response to an article written over twenty years ago.

I am writing in response to Penny Ward Moser’s article A Fan for the Ages in your Sept. 9, 1987, issue. Yes, 1987. The article stated that at the pace fans were moving up the waiting list for Washington Redskins season tickets, a new prospective buyer would have to wait 353 years to get to the head of the line-which prompted me to put my name on the list. Well, I just got a letter in a burgundy envelope with a big bold CONGRATULATIONS on the front in yellow. My name reached the top in only 21½ years.

At the time that I read Moser’s article, I was single and 25 years old, had no children or money to buy even one ticket to a Redskins game, and I was living in Cincinnati. But I figured that by the time my name got to the top of the list, I’d be back home in Maryland (I am) and I’d have a family (I do) and I’d have the money to buy season tickets (therein lies the rub).

I suppose I could go ahead and buy the tickets and worry later about paying for a new water heater, the kids’ braces and a replacement for the minivan that we bought when I was 12,063rd on the waiting list. But then the tickets would probably just become another thing for the divorce attorneys to split up.

It’s a tough call-I’m still not sure what I’ll do, and I have until the end of the month to decide-but it could be worse. At least I’m not a Dallas Cowboys fan who will have to pay for a personal seat license knowing the team probably won’t win another playoff game for, I don’t know, 21½ years.
Larry Shaughnessy, Germantown, Md

But there’s something that’s possibly even more interesting than the modern letter: Read more »

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On March 12, Banks (Still) Says: Andre Smith, OT, Alabama

Posted by Matt Terl on March 12, 2009 – 2:58 pm

When Don Banks projected Andre Smith to the Redskins a little less than a month ago, it didn’t seem like a terrible idea. Then Smith had his pro day yesterday, and now I’m just a bit more skeptical. To say the least.

The NFL Network pictures are even more damning than the early reports; The Big Lead has them if you haven’t seen them yet.

Nevertheless, Banks remains confident that this is the direction in which the Redskins are moving. And boy does he make it sound like an appealing selection!

When you get into the second 10 picks of the first round, teams draft almost exclusively for need. That’s why Smith won’t get past the tackle-starved Redskins, even if he did his reputation damage with that disappearing act at the combine, and followed it up by failing to really impress at his pro day this week.

The other folks that have been rumored to be of interest to the team are all (mostly long) off the board by thirteen in this projection:

Read more »

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Thursday, March 12: The IRS Considers Me A Jock

Posted by Matt Terl on March 12, 2009 – 12:34 pm

I’ve been known to misplace my W-2 forms from time to time. It’s actually not as big a deal as it sounds like — you just call your employer, tell them that you need a replacement W-2, and voila. New tax information shows up in the mail.

But for a long time, that’s what the weeks between the start of the year and April 15 consisted of for me: losing and replacing tax documents, and eventually scrambling to file ahead of the deadline. So when five separate W-2 envelopes hit my desk a few weeks back, I figured that someone in payroll had just correctly guessed in advance that I was the sort of person who would wind up requesting replacement docs.


The five envelopes in fact contained something like ten separate W-2s — one for each state we traveled to for a game, with the exception of Washington state and Texas (which don’t have a state income tax).

This took me by surprise, first because I had never heard of the Jock Tax, and second because it would never have occurred to me that something called the Jock Anything would apply to me.

The so-called Jock Tax is, in essence, a tax assessed by a state to which someone has traveled to conduct business. So since I worked a game in Philadelphia, I have to file a tax return with the state of Pennsylvania for that day’s work. Read more »

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