Politics, Oh Politics

Each morning when I get to work, there’s the welcoming of a plethora of popups in the right-hand corner of my computer screen. The great news resource (baha!) known as Yahoo! somehow put this auto-pop on my PC, and I have no idea how to get rid of it. I learn that “If you click now, you’ll learn the secret to losing pure fat and reveal a tight, toned body.” There’s a “You won’t believe what these celebrities look like now!” Even though it’s unsurprising that they’ve aged. And of course, there’s whatever Trump did. Or at least what someone in the Republican party did. Today’s was about the resignation of Acosta.

Everyday, it seems like someone else is leaving the White House. A lot of change, for a party that is stereotypically anti-change, or so they say. A party of red elephants. Wait, what? Thomas Nast was a creative fellow, and I guess thought that donkeys dressed as lions, and elephants, were good enemies. A bit about it here: https://www.cbsnews.com/news/how-the-parties-got-their-animal-symbols/ .

I am not a big fan of politics, because it really puts people against each other. I find it to be on the exact opposite end of mascots, which brings everyone together in lovable happiness and smiles. So to think that both have pretty much the same red elephant was a tough conclusion for me to accept. But, who wouldn’t choose this guy:

Big Al is the smiliest elephant in the southeast, thanks to the University of Alabama’s amazing football team. He is full of hugs and dancing, and when his booty goes one way, his trunk goes another.

I was lucky enough to meet him at last year’s NCAA tournament, and ummm, I think my life was made. Note though, if you wanna get a selfie, you DEF need a selfie stick. His head is *slightly* larger than your average mascot ;).

Whether you’re a donkey or an elephant (species-wise or politics-wise) I continue to wonder why we can’t meet in the middle. Sure, there may be some things that you’re extremely passionate about, but as I listen to debates, it seems political parties are pretty all or nothing on everything. Moderation is key, and compromise is a must. Even if Big Al and Aubie are enemies on the football field, they are best buddies in the classroom and during photo ops.

Golden Hurricane (seriously)

Yes, I am aware that mascots have not happened in a very long time.  But I need to write one right now, or I will go crazy.  The project I am working on has thousands of problems, and I cannot find what causes any of them.
None. Zero.  Does that sound bad? Because it is.

But, it is not as bad as a golden hurricane.  What is a golden hurricane, anyway?  Am I the only one picturing urine going every which way?  That, frankly, does not sound pleasant, so I can see how it may deter the competition.  Even if it is supposedly sterile, it’s still just, eww. But, leave it to Oklahoma to use pee as a weapon.
The University of Tulsa does not see it that way at all, though.  Captain Cane has a few version, and only one of them really relates at all to a deadly storm.
I have mad respect for the old version.  He is what he says he is.  Sure he is a little doofy looking, but this is a golden hurricane. and that’s awesome!
But then they got rid of him for something that there is no logical reasoning behind.  He’s happy, he’s cute, he’s got a huge buttchin; I respect all of those things.  But, how is he at all related to a golden hurricane?
And bring it to today.  The one thing they had going for this guy was cuteness.  But now… nothing.  Nothing.  Bad costume.  Lumpy faux-muscles, scary face.
So there ya have it.  The University of Tulsa.

Let’s get Rowdy


That hottie above, also known as Frank Beamer, the retired head football coach at Virginia Tech, went to school where?
Radford Unversity!  Which at one point was the same thing as VT, back when VT was still just VPI.
Radford, originally ‘The State Normal and Industrial School for Women at Radford,’ was founded in 1911, which was definitely a different time than now.  Their ideal was to give “Southern Gentlewomen, observing Victorian values and prudence'” a teaching-focused education.  Wow.  No.

But thankfully, the WW2 era and VPI saved this school from its backward doom.  During the war, the school was having issues enrolling enough students, and to save money, merged with VPI , becoming the Women’s Dvision of VPI in 1943.  Because of this, women were able to take the same courses at VPI as men were, opening up more than just manners, household arts, and teaching as possible education focuses.  Despite this success using VPI’s modern gender attitude, Radford was still unwilling to drop the dated “southern gentlewoman’ ideal, causing VPI to split from them in 1964.  Radford survived, but finally dropped the slogan, and opened the school to both men and women in 1972.  Today, they have 10k students, some graduate and doctoral programs, and this guy:
This is Highlander, who is pretty muscular, grows sweet facial hair, and loves plaid.  He’s also good at doing the worm.
But Highlander is not nearly as good as Rowdy Red, who was terminated in the 70’s.
The story is that Rowdy Red left because he wanted to move to the west coast, and eventually got a talk show in LA, but it never made it past the pilot.  I’m not buying it.  I want Rowdy Red back!!

Fashion Inspiration

Remember seeing photos of yourself wearing these as a youngin?

Don’t feel ashamed, we all wore them.  They’re the famous Oshkosh B’Gosh overalls of toddlerhood.  Thankfully, these stylin’ dungarees are still worn today, sold under the parent company Carter’s.  But before there was a Carter’s, or even a B’Gosh, there was just OshKosh, an industrial workwear clothing company that became famous for the toughness of their overalls.  The company did most of their sales via catalogue until the 1960’s, when department stores asked to sell their clothing in-house because it was so popular.  10 years later and still going strong, they decided to make a children’s line, B’Gosh, which took off like a rocket.  As the population of industrial workers decreased, the adult clothing failed to sell, but the kid’s clothing sales soared and continued to do so even after Carter’s aquired them for $312 million in 2005.  Though most manufacturing occurs in Honduras now, there is still the company HQ in OshKosh, Wisconsin.
Yes I just told you the entire history of a company you care nothing about, solely to tell you that they are named after the city in Wisconsin where they were first formed.
But that’s not all this amazing city has to offer.  There is also a wonderful satellite campus known as University of Wisconsin, OshKosh, home of Clash the titan.
OshKosh has called themselves Titans since 1937- 66 years after the school was founded.  Since then, the school went through many Titan versions before settling on the one today.
The current one is more Star Wars, less human, than any of the priors- I like his forward thinking!
I also really like his style- black dress?  Black tights?  Flats?  Anything possible to cover a bad hair day?  Check Check Check Check!!!

Cobra on a Trike

As the United States approaches the next presidential election, we hear more and more debates concerning the cost of post-secondary education.  Many candidates say that college has become unaffordable and even go as far as saying it’s a scam.  The presidential hopefuls promise to get the power back-control prices and make education accessible to all.  While I do support education, and know that starting life $20k+ in debt is difficult, I have to also question- at what point is it our fault as an individual?

An extreme example would be a school like Coker College, in Hartsville, SC, where the average student has a HS GPA of 2.5 and an average ACT score of 18.  Despite theselow statistics, the school costs $28k annually.  Even worse, the degree the school advertises most is their BA in liberal arts.  $100k+ for a BA in liberal arts from a subpar school… where’s the reasoning?!
But alas, I think I know the answer.  People go there because they’re the Coker Cobras, which strikes fear, uniqueness, and evil into the hearts of us all.
Wait, did I say fear?  More like hilarity!  He’s on a tricycle with a balloon!
Striker was born in 2005 in the Black Creek Swamp near Darlington, SC.  Fitting to the area, he is very into car racing, and drives a Shelby Cobra.  He tries to show his toughness on and off the road, but he may be the one creature with weaker arms than I have.  But I don’t have fatal venom, so at least he has that going for him.


My friends and I have had the discussion of what’s better- college sports or pro sports.  Of course, they’re from South Carolina, where there are no pro teams, so it’s college all the way.  But I’m from Minneapolis, where we have the Big 4, and I’ve always thought pro is better.

The thing is, there’s a lot to remember on a daily basis- go to work, pick up your dry cleaning, don’t eat so much chocolate; who has time to remember an infinite number of teams?  Professional stays the same always- 30 or 32 teams, without a turnover of players every 4 years.  Sure, there’s not THAT many D1 football schools, but basketball?!  Everyone is a D1 basketball team.  Have you ever heard of St. Bonaventure?  They’re a 2500-student tiny Catholic university in upstate New York.  I had no idea they existed, but evidently they play decent basketball in the Atlantic 10, even making it to the NCAA tournament in 2012.
St. Bonaventure athletes call themselves Bonnies, which is just adorable.  Also adorable, their mascot:
NCAA Basketball Tournament - St. Bonaventure v Florida State
This is The Bona Wolf, who came around in 1998, but not without a little drama.  For 65 years, up until 1992, this team was the Brown Indians, but of course it was time for a change, so they got the Bona Fanatic.
The fans hated the fanatic so much that they costume wearer often was assaulted at games.  Lovely.
They’ve managed to keep Bona Wolf for 18 years now, proving the point that when it comes to mascots, cute always wins!

Pick a State

Two superbowls, people.  Two.  Tom Coughlin won two superbowls in 12 season with the New York Giants, and now he’s gone.  He’s been replaced by some first time head coach 31 years his junior.  Ben McAdoo, this successor of the Gmen empire, has coached for 9 different teams since his start in 1996, giving me an eerie feeling concerning both his dedication and achievement.

McAdoo also makes me think the worst because he graduated from a douchey school called Indiana University of Pennsylvania.  WHAT?  Pick a state, people- or in this case, a commonwealth, damn Penn.
IUP is home to 15,000 students who love wearing crimson and slate, and enjoy confusing people about which of the 50 states they reside.  Opening in 1875 as Indiana Normal School, the state purchased the school in the 1920’s, and soon after renamed it State Teacher College at Indiana.  So once again, the government is to blame for this illogical mayhem.  In 1965, they became what they are today, IUP.  You changed your name just 50 years ago and that’s the best you could come up with?
The one thing keeping this school alive is Norm, the Crimson Hawk, who didn’t come along until 2007!
Originally called the Indians, the school had to change their name at the turn of the millenium to keep up with social crap.  They removed the Cherokee Indian idea, and made Cherokee the bear.
This only lasted until 2002, when using the name Cherokee at all was forbidden.  So they randomly changed themselves to the fighting squirrels.
Unfortunately, this odd fellow only lasted 5 years until it was realized that the situation could be interpreted as a Cherokee Indian being equivalent to a fighting squirrel.  And with that, they became the all-respectful, all-wonderful hawk.

You Dirtbag!

There are multiple teams in multiple leagues with the name 49’ers.  What is a 49er, though?  It is a person who took part in the California gold rush of 1849.  Though the gold rush actually began in 1848, it was not until 1849 that the word had spread of these riches, and people all the way from the east coast were moving to the west side to make 5 year’s worth of wages in 6 months.  So, yes, there are teams naming themselves after a greedy, gold-digging year of history.

One of these teams is California State University- Long Beach, though they claim 49’ers stands for being founded in 1949.  Not sure how they claim that, though, when this guy is named Prospector Pete.  He did some gold digging in his day, I’m just saying.
Here is his original portrayal for more proof:
But better than that, though, is their unofficial baseball name, the dirtbags.  Supposedly their diamond was dustier than most others, so they got named the dirtbags.  I don’t really care how it happened; I just want to go watch them and yell GO DIRTBAGS!

The Other Gophers

Not only is it Friday, I also have a colouring book here at work, so I am a happy camper.  Do you not want to give all of the princesses the stereotypical beige colour, with bright red lips, and neon yellow hair?

You know who else is neon yellow?  The Mascot of the Day, of course.  Little did I know that there is more than just Minnesota who loves gophers- we also have Towson, Maryland, home of the Goucher College Gophers.
This school of 2000 happy students has this tough guy fighting for them 24/7.
Founded in 1885, the Baltimore Methodist Episcopal Church wanted a seminary, but Bishop Andrews was a little ballsy, and stated:
“I would not give a fig for a weakling little thing of a seminary. We want such a school, so ample in its provisions, of such dignity in its buildings, so fully provided with the best apparatus, that it shall draw to itself the eyes of the community and that young people shall feel it an honor to be enrolled among its students.” 
Minister John Franklin Goucher agreed, and so they pushed forth to found a college with both seminary and liberal arts.  They also wanted it to be architecturally groundbreaking, and spent much time, planning with many builders, to create what would be seen as a modern, forward-thinking campus.
I love that they planned so much for so many different aspects of the college, but why would you not spend as much time coming up with a story for the mascot.  This college has nothing for this gopher- not even a name.  But this is how he lives on, cute and tough.
Except his costume version, which is the opposite of that.  Those eyes, they’re burning into your soul.


Lincoln, Nebraska- home to probably the most well-known inflatamascot there is, Lil Red.

But just one hour northeast of this dreamy balloon is Warren Buffet’s quasi-reasonably-sized house, and home of the Creighton University Blue Jays.  Creighton considers Nebraska to be its biggest rival, though maybe they shouldn’t because this guy looks damn good in blue (and with Cinderella’s carriage, what?!).
This Jesuit Roman Catholic university was founded in 1878, thanks to an old lady donating a lot of money after her husband’s passing.  Their official colours were blue and white, and so they were referred to as the “blue and whites” or “white and blues.”  Creative.  So in 1923, they had a write-in asking students to choose a mascot for the school.  200 suggestions were made, with the president choosing the blue jay, because it went along with the colours.  In 1941, a professor and alumni decided to make an official sketch of the mascot.
This is Billy, and he has stood the test of time, with his cute/tough/angry/sad face confusing the opponent.  Later on, this matching cutie arrived:

PHILADELPHIA, PA - MARCH 22:  The Creighton Bluejays mascot performs on the court while the Bluejays take on the Cincinnati Bearcats during the second round of the 2013 NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament on March 22, 2013 at Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images) ORG XMIT: 159452657

Both the logo and mascot stuck around until 2013, when someone really uncool came along, and decided that a switch from the Missouri Valley Conference to the Big East should mean a team rebrand.
You had an adorable buddy who has been loved for 72 years, and you replace him with this guy?
Those are not nearly as cute!  Bring the old Billy back!!!
Just a random side note… if old, cute Billy and new, ugly Billy had a kid, what do you think he would look like?  I think he would look exactly like the MLB Toronto Blue Jay’s mascot.
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