The Wizards begin another NBA season Tuesday night in Cleveland, and that means another year of pain and perspective awaits.
That's the prism through which Wizards fans have to view the team, one of false promises for a better tomorrow and new ways to describe the futility of the past.
In comparison, think about this: Oklahoma City Thunder fans were upset this weekend at the news that James Harden was traded to the Houston Rockets.
The Thunder, a small-market team, couldn't afford to sign Harden to the long-term deal he sought. So all Thunder fans are left with now is Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook and the remaining contributing players from last season's NBA Western Conference champions.
So sad. So unfair.
You want pain, baby? The last time the Wizards made the playoffs the Thunder still were in Seattle. The last time the Wizards/Bullets played in the NBA Finals, most NBA players couldn't even tell you what state Oklahoma City was in.
To be a fan of the Wizards is to watch the world go by.
It's like being stuck on a cold, desolate planet and looking through a telescope at the other worlds filled with life and basking in the glow of a warm sun.
It's like being in a prison on a beach and looking through a giant picture window at people frolicking in the ocean while you're stuck in your dark, dingy cell.
The Magic and Bird era -- come and gone. They make Broadway plays about that era now.
The Michael Jordan era -- come and gone. He's just a lousy sports executive now, and the only impact he had on this franchise was to contribute to the suffering.
The Kobe Bryant era -- in its 17th season and nearing an end.
The LeBron James era -- now in its 10th season.
What is this era for the Wizards? The non-knucklehead era, supposedly.
Gilbert Arenas is on another continent. JaVale McGee, Andray Blatche and Nick Young are all with other NBA teams.
So Wizards fans at least can anticipate that, with the additions of Nene, Emeka Okafor and Trevor Ariza, this team will lose with more heart and intelligence than what we've seen at Verizon Center.
They can anticipate the return of John Wall from a knee injury in a month and hope he learned something during his rehabilitation that he didn't seem to learn in his first two NBA seasons.
They will hope that rookie Bradley Beal will lead them off this dead planet someday -- at least until the next NBA lottery.