Thursday, August 28, 2008

Thanks from SuperSkin

"OH man, oh man, oh man, oh man, OH MAN!" Is what I heard on the other line when I called to tell the Chief that we retrieved his stolen tomahawk. I can't even begin to explain the excitement that brought me. Being able to send out this "APB" and have the missing item returned in less than 6 hours...WOW!

I want to express to everyone how great this is but after reading this email from SuperSkin, I know I could never measure up to that task.

Tanner -

A few hours ago, I caught the blog entry (as well as some of the news articles) about Chief Zee's missing Tomahawk. While some may have found it humorous or amusing, I actually had a heavy heart for Zema. When you dress up as Jason Vorhees for Halloween and lose your hockey mask, you run out to Party City and buy a new one - no sweat, no worries. But when you have supported the Redskins (and its fan base) as long as Zema has, the tomahawk you've toted and waved for over 25 years takes on a new, sacred meaning. Pure and simple, it's more than a mascot's "toy" - it's a tool of the trade, and its battle tested.

I've appeared as "SuperSkin" at FedEx Field for over ten years - ever since former Redskins Owner Jack Kent Cooke came to me in a dream with the directive to help bring back the electric atmosphere to our home games. Take away my gloves, my utility belt, or - God forbid - my cape, and you have taken away a piece of who I am and what I stand for. These accessories tell tales of their usage and history - from deafening crowd noise on a huge defensive third down, to the collective silence that occurs before a game-winning field goal attempt. After 25 years of action at RFK Stadium and Fed Ex Field, oh what a story the Chief's tomahawk could tell.

Now, it appears to be back where it belongs, and it's clear that you and Chris are to thank for that. This story - and its ending - is about much more than a tongue-in-cheek effort to return game day "ammunition" to its rightful owner. It's about the relationship between the Washington Redskins franchise and its fans - a union like no other in the National Football League. From the galvanizing effect of our mutual grief during the Sean Taylor tragedy, to painting the city of Canton burgundy with fans during the Hall of Fame Enshrinement weekend, to a star player using his notoriety to bring about the return of a super fan’s most prized possession, the Redskins and its fan base remain blissfully codependent. I like to think that the team "has our back", and we damn sure will return the favor we rock the house with noise this season.

Please accept my sincerest thanks, and send my gratitude to Chris as well. Redskins Nation can sleep well tonight. The tomahawk is alive and well, and so is the marriage between the team and its faithful brethren.

Burgundy and Gold Forever,


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