January 30, 2018

The Washington Otto Show

I apologize in advance for the title of this post.

For the last 15 or so years, I've pretty much scheduled most of my life around the Washington Wizards schedule. Yes, I've had season tickets for 18 years now but the first few I was a bit less fanatical than I am now. Or was a few years ago is maybe a bit more accurate. In a typical year, that schedule involves something like the following sequence of events.
  • Training camp, maybe with a trip down to Richmond or somewhere else;
  • Preseason a.k.a. a total waste of money (still think preseason games should be free for season ticket holders);
  • Meet the Team party (can't miss this one each year);
  • First half of the regular season, hopefully with a roadtrip in there sometime before it starts snowing;
  • All-Star Break (good time to go on vacation or actually to the All-Star Game);
  • Trade deadline (taking the afternoon off work is ideal here);
  • Second half of the regular season, hopefully with a warm weather roadie;
  • Playoffs, if I'm lucky;
  • NBA Draft, if Ernie doesn't trade out;
  • Free agency, in which we never sign anyone good;
  • Summer League in Vegas.
Once you got all that down, you just repeat, repeat, repeat.
One other event that used to appear on this schedule for at least five of those 15 years was the Washington Auto Show, because it seemed like an annual occurrence that someone from the Wizards would be over at the convention center (either the old one or the current one) for a couple of hours during that event saying hi to folks and signing autographs. I first made my way over to this event in 2006, when Brendan Haywood, Jared Jeffries and Jarvis Hayes put in an appearance one Sunday afternoon. The next year it was Antawn Jamison who also showed up in 2010. Brendan Haywood made it back to the Show in 2008 along with Caron Butler and the dynamic duo of JaVale McGee and Nick Young filled in the gap in 2009. Dominic McGuire was supposed to be there in '09 but never showed; either that or I just left before he made it. Not sure which one, although I made it long enough so that there was enough dead time to see some dude pay Nick Young for his couple of hours sitting in a chair.
After 2010, nothing. Not a thing. And I check this stuff pretty religiously.
Well, nothing until this year, when Otto Porter will be sitting at some sort of table signing whatever fans can put in front of him tomorrow night from 6 to 8 pm, although remember we are talking about NBA players here so let's say it will really be like 6:15 to 6:30 before it actually gets underway. He'll apparently be joined by the Wizards Girls; best mascot in the NBA, G Wiz; and Gheorghe Muresan. The Auto Show is taking place over at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center at 801 Mount Vernon Place NW.

Why is this even worth blogging about? Well, if you are an Otto Porter fan or just a Wizards autograph collector, it's a great opportunity to get some signatures on some swag from Otto. But sometimes, these things are not that well attended and it's actually a good time to have a quick conversation with these guys, which is something the average fan can't do very well very often. This opportunity was especially true during the McGee / Young year when there was literally about nobody there. If only I could have pondered having an intelligent conversation with either of those guys...
So, if you have something you really want to ask Otto, maybe tomorrow is a good time to make your way over to the Auto Show and ask away, providing the crowds aren't that big. I'm likely headed over there myself if my schedule allows. If there are a ton of people there, you can always just get some stuff signed and then head home or to check out some cars.

If things are really quiet, you might even be able to get a picture of yourself with Otto. There was a photographer there in 2007 taking pics of people with AJ. If they do this again, hopefully your pic looks better than my fattest pic ever wearing a shirt the size of a small tent with some hair that I don't know what was going on shown below. I appreciated the opportunity three years later to tell Antawn that I'd be happy if the Wizards traded him (the team was in the midst of a 26-56 disaster back then) but just not to Cleveland. He laughed. Then 18 days later the Wizards traded him to the Cavaliers.

No comments:

Post a Comment