Dick Move of the Week: Patty Murray Taunts Dead Barrel Man

Seahawks hysteria is everywhere. I get it. The team is in the Super Bowl, and it’s an exciting time to be a fan. It’s easy to get carried away.

And, judging by the Twitter account of Washington’s U.S. Senator Patty Murray, that’s exactly what happened in D.C. this afternoon. Pumped up on 12th Man fervor, Murray (or, more likely, her staff) sent out what - at face value - probably seemed like a harmless tweet.

Here it is.

In an attempt to rib her colleague, Sen. Michael Bennet of Colorado, Murray’s tweet compares the increasingly well-known Seahawks fan Tim Froemke, better known as Seahulk, with legendary Broncos fan “Barrel Man,” aka Tim McKernan. When it comes to Seahulk, I’m sure you know him ... he’s the dude that paints himself a buff shade of green for every home game and is always a target for television cameras. And when it comes to Denver’s Barrel Man, you probably know him, too ... since he first started attending Broncos games in nothing more than a orange and blue barrel, boots and a cowboy hat back in the ‘70s. He became a Mile High staple, and, much like Seahulk, a constant target for television cameras.

Apparently attempting to contrast both fans respective physiques, Murray’s taunting tweet was tagged with #EnoughSaid.

The problem?

Barrel Man died in 2009, suffering lung failure in his sleep. The Denver Post covered it. To this day he remains a legend in Denver. As his Wikipedia page details, Barrel Man was able to sell his Super Bowl XXXII barrel - which was autographed by 49 Broncos players - for $30,000, donating 10 percent of the proceeds to a battered women’s shelter. In Denver, Barrel Man is the Elway of fans.

Did Murray (or the folks who tweet on her behalf) know of Barrel Man’s legendary status, or more importantly the fact that he’s been dead for over four years? It seems unlikely. If they had, chances are they wouldn’t have sent out such a tasteless tweet.

On behalf of all Broncos fans (yes, I’m a Broncos fan ... whatever), I’d like to call for Murray’s resignation. Short of that, though, it seems like a simple apology is in order. Seahawks fans can root on their team with as much passion as they please - in fact, I encourage it - but mocking a dead, beloved legend crosses the line.

For that, Patty Murray wins the coveted Dick Move of the Week award.

UPDATE: Feeling the Dick Move pressure, Murray's staff apologized for the Barrel Man tweet this afternoon. They also appear to have deleted the original offensive tweet.

Apologies accepted.


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*About Dick Move of the Week: Every week, Seattle Weekly embarks on the daunting task of sifting through all the dick moves pulled in our fair city to determine which was the biggest, hardest, or otherwise dicky-est of them all. Have a nomination? Email Matt Driscoll, mdriscoll@seattleweeky.com .

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