Remember 1996? How cool was that year? That was back when it was cool to call years names with articles. “It’s really going down in The Nine-Six,” is the kind of things people would say to each other at their high school lockers. Don’t ask me how I know that. You know what else happened in 1996? D.C. United won MLS Cup! The first one, ever, in fact. If you don’t recall, it was a rain-soaked mess in Foxboro, Mass., that some people thought wouldn’t actually happen because of the weather.
Alas, it did, and in the single most exciting local sporting moment of my life, Eddie Pope headed home the golden goal to give the Black and Red the first ever league championship trophy. Half our high school soccer team was in our buddy’s basement in Bethesda, and we jumped around like idiots for quite some time. It was awesome. It was also my mom’s birthday, so that was a kind of tough sacrifice. That also happened to be the last time the New York football Giants came to RFK Stadium.
If you want to relive those memories, make sure you get to the last regular season game of the year on Oct. 18. The team is giving away throwback T-shirts that look just like those inaugural jerseys, which although plain, were tremendous. The team is celebrating its 20th season. If you’re one the first 5,000 people at the game, you’ll get one.
While we’re at it, let’s take a look back at that year. The Whitewater scandal. Deep Blue beat Gary Kasparov. The Sarajevo siege ended. Whoopi Goldberg hosted the Academy Awards. The Scottish Claymores beat the Frankfurt Galaxy in the World Bowl. (Scott Allen had World League trading cards, btw) THE NINTENDO 64 WAS RELEASED. Fox News Channel was invented. And of course, the O.J. Simpson trial began.
We all remember what D.C. United was doing in 1996. The question is, what were you doing?