**Editor's Note: This post will rarely have this much written content, so don't distress. It WILL have an audio file attached to it most days, but listening to it is a choice! More on that below.
I feel like it would be irresponsible not to briefly summarize how the title of this feature is derived. In an old tool shed not far from the Redskins practice field at Redskins Park back in the early 80's, the Hogs gathered most days to solve the problems of the world. Rumor has it there was a kerosene heater that John Riggins would use to warm cans of beans that the group would chase down their gullets with (many) cans of beer. Only the offensive linemen and those deemed part of their posse (a select tight end or running back) were allowed entrance into this "5 o'clock club." Years later, at Russ Grimm's post-Hall of Fame induction party thrown by the Washington organization, Kevin and I were lucky enough to be in attendance as a simple tiki hut was erected in the middle of a sprawling party tent. The sign above read, "The 5 O'Clock Club," and the floor behind and around it was covered by a MOUNTAIN of canned beer. While John Legend was tickling the ivory not 100 feet away in an adjacent tent in front of tuxedo-wearing attendees to honor Jerry Rice's induction, we were in the midst of the most casually dressed group on the grounds, chain-drinking Bud Light (or whatever it was they were serving). I'll never forget the sight of original Hogs like Grimm and Jacoby holding two beers in one hand--drinking from the top one, with the bottom one ready in reserve. To be honest, I have been waiting for the better part of six years to have a post concept worthy of this title. This site is named after the guys who formed the 5 O'Clock Club, so it only makes sense that the title be used to welcome those members of this site who gather each day to solve a variety of problems themselves!
Good morning to all of you, and welcome to the first of what I hope will be a regular (daily) presence on Hogs Haven. Before we get started, I wanted to thank those of you who came to me asking for this kind of post. Back when Kevin and I first started managing Hogs Haven, we noticed quickly that we were getting traffic from all over the world. It was rather awesome...and humbling. I recall suggesting to Kevin that we run an overnight thread for overseas folks and those in different time zones than us (on the east coast). I tried a couple of these posts (this was back in 2010), but what I found was that it did more to cannibalize other posts than it did to kind of create its own vibe.
My goal was to give the Hogs Haven regulars a place where they could gather on a daily basis away from specifically targeted articles, so that the comments could kind of dance all over the map. In the years following, the commentariat laid claim to the Daily Slop as the home for such conversations. Phil, our Daily Slop author, has shouldered that burden and I think we have finally grown enough as a community to create the additional space.
With that in mind, "The 5 O'Clock Club" post is dedicated to all those Redskins fans who come here on a daily basis to mix it up with their like-minded brethren. Instead of posting this in the evening, I will push this out each morning (my time) at 5 AM EST. (In reality, I will be preparing this the night before and scheduling it to post.) Recognizing that there are plenty of you who get to work earlier than me, go to bed later than me and generally look for a place like this at different times of the day than I do (meaning from every other part of the world than where I live), my hope is that this post will create a great spot each day to talk about...well, let's just see!
I will not be asking Phil to change the way he presents the Daily Slop. He has been killing it for years, and his formula works. Instead, I will suggest that the first subject in the comments section each day on here will be dedicated to all those links from around the web you are all reading and talking about. There are simply too many to collect daily, and Phil's Daily Slop post has a good flow to it these days.
Whereas the original 5 O'Clock Club was somewhat exclusive, this one will be less so. I do envision this space as a home for the regulars to carry on their normal debates (some more contentious than others, as always), and as such, I do envision/hope this post will contain the most congeniality. After all, we will be defined by the way we treat others, and this presents an opportunity to put our community in the most positive light possible. If trolls appear, they will handled by the moderators. It is also worth noting that some of the moderating will be handled by SB Nation itself, as the network is lending a hand to ensure that its communities are as welcoming and considerate as we expect them all to be. Trust me when I tell you that Hogs Haven stands as one of the truly great digital communities. You all see what comments sections turn into on the internet. It is soul-crushing to see the way people who have never met talk to each other from behind a keyboard and screen. Thankfully, we very seldom have to experience this in all of its ugliness.
This post also gives me the outlet I have been looking for to include my daily sports minute audio file, aptly titled, ":60 Seconds of Intimacy w/ Ken Meringolo" (often imitated but seldom replicated). These will typically be about the Redskins or DC sports in general, but I figured it would fit the bill as this comments area will be overwhelmed with topics of all kinds. (We recorded The Audible last night, so no sports minute today.)
To keep it simple (or as clear as possible) , I ask that any new subject be introduced with a clear title and that all comments about that subject be contained underneath, so that people can scroll down and choose which conversation to join.
Without further ado...welcome to the 5 O'Clock Club!
For those of you who have been around Hogs Haven long enough to remember, here is our good friend UKRedskin joining us for a nice little chat about our favorite team.