It is with some sadness that I have to inform you that Scott Fujita has left the Saints to join the hapless Cleveland Browns... (cue LP scratching off turntable/People turning round with looks of disdain). OK so I'm a little late writing up the news these days, in fact a lot late, so sue me why don't you. I've got to earn a living after all. But I just wanted to add my two cents to the Scott Fujita tribute archive whilst we are still in the official period of mourning.
You see the Saints LB was not only a supreme team player but also a great guy as witnessed by his generous donations to the coastal improvements fund. He's the kind of guy every locker room should have and the Cleveland Browns will be well served with him in their team.
It also underlines the fragility of our attachment to Saints players. Over the years I have been pained to see players I love and respect leave town for adventures new only to see them excel elsewhere and leave me crying into my giant Saints foam hand.
'Why Pat Swilling? Why oh why do you have to leave us?' I cried at the age of 16. 'First Ricky Jackson leaves and now you? I will never again enjoy watching QB's being torn limb from limb in such numbers'.
That was the first real period of mourning I had in my Saints life. It was tough going. Friends would drop by the house. I would hear my mum let them in and offer a cautionary 'don't mention the Dome Patrol' warning to them. They would come into my room and make polite conversation, offer to open the curtains maybe and then retreat as my cold hard stare froze their will to live in their tracks. I was inconsolable, I was a wreck, I was 16.
Days would pass, I would slumber in bed sometimes listening to In Utero sometimes not. Always thinking about Pat and Ricky tearing in from the edge, knowing I would never again see fear in Joe Montana's eyes. Over time the freakish devotion to the Dome Patrol and the Saints would make way for girls, bad haircuts and rebellion but always the pain would linger.
That is why I say to all adolescents out there (and Michelle at Saints Rants for I know you must be hurting) you have to let go. I know it hurts but Scott is going to a new life now. He will always have a place in our hearts and will not be forgotten but you have to open the curtains again and let the light in, turn off In Utero (or whatever the teenage angst album of choice is these days) and go forth and prepare for the draft.
It will be OK and maybe one day, like all good ex-Saints players, he will return to the fold in some management capacity and once again infuse a bit of that Scott Fujita magic back into the organization. In the meantime blessed be you on your journey Scott - the King is Dead, Long Live the King!