FLASHBACK – Feb 2 2008 – After the agony of seeing Art Monk, the former Washington Redskins (OK and Jets and Eagles) wide receiver fail to secure a place in the NFL Pro Football Hall of Fame seven consecutive times, it was with slightly frosty baited breath that I sat watching a live broadcast on www.nfl.com earlier this year as the Class of 2008 was announced.
It didn’t help that my streaming video quality was about the same quality as a portable television in a Swiss Alpine goat herders hut.
My wife gave me that familiar ‘don’t worry there’s always next year’ look and our two friends who were round for the evening wondered why the hell there was so much tension in the air.
When Art Monk’s name was announced through the crackly, stammering signal, I wasn’t initially sure if his name was being cited in vain or in celebration. My eyes bulged and I tapped the side of the laptop for a better signal, again nothing – a frozen screen.
Then finally (well in reality 10 seconds later) there it was on a graphic at the bottom of the video stream – ART MONK HOF CLASS OF 2008.
I didn’t know whether to laugh or cry, instead I launched myself out of my front door and stood under a street light, pointed to the heavens and screamed at the top of my lungs yeeeeeeeeeeeeeeees, yeeeeeeeeeeeeees. I then ran into the back of the house to grab my signed art lithograph of Art Monk and proceeded to dance with it – again much to the bemusement of our guests and my relieved wife.
I do feel that I can take a minuscule slice of the credit for the former Syracuse wideout’s deserved place amongst the good and the great of the NFL at Canton.
My banner (pictured above) went to the first ever regular season NFL game played in Europe – when the New York Giants beat the Miami Dolphins 13-10 at Wembley Stadium in London. After some furious banner waving I even managed to get it filmed on the JumboTron in the 4th quarter – 80,000 fans saw my banner !!!!!
The banner then went on a USA vacation as the Redskins played the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in Florida. Everyone cheered my banner, and one particularly keen American even stopped me so he could take a a picture. Suffice to say the Redskins lost (it was actually the weekend that Sean Tayor went back to Miami after his injury) but it was great to see even the Buccs fans agree that Art Monk deserved his own bronze bust in a certain building in Ohio.
I know for sure that on Saturday (August 2 2008) its going to be emotional.
Art Monk deserved his place in the Hall of Fame many years ago – just look at his stats .
Mr Monk I salute you.