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Date » 2009 » January « Home

Mr. Met: Best Mascot??

Who was the best mascot of 2008? Was it Youppi, late of the Montreal Expos and now a Canadiens booster? Was it Phanatic knock-off Wally the Green Monster? (No, it most certainly was not.) Or was it noted child sex criminal Grump, the former mascot of the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Yankees (nee Red Barons)?

Oh, wait, no. That was just a silly opening to tell you the Phillie Phanatic is the best mascot of 2008. The Phils won the World Series, the Phanatic annoyed a bunch of fans, etc., etc. Right?

Well, no, but you already knew this since you read the headline. Forbes named Mr. Met the best mascot in sports, once and for all proving that we shouldn’t assign any weight to the rankings put out by Forbes in an attempt to get Internet traffic. Jesus. Mr. Met?! Ranking the sports mascots and putting Mr. Met first is like ranking the Awesome Things About the Universe and putting “the sun will eventually turn into a red giant, killing us all” first.

The Phanatic finished second. Forbes actually claims that there was actual research and science in this report, too:

To see which score best with the public, market research firm the Marketing Arm measured awareness, appeal and likability among sports mascots. Through its Davie Brown Index, the firm gathered data on nearly 100 mascots of professional and major college sports teams, gauging reactions from a cross section of people that demographically represent the U. S. population.

Oh, yes, the Davie Brown Index. Well, maybe it needs to be replaced with the Not So Fucking Stupid Index because the current one put Mr. Met at number one. What, there wasn’t room for this guy?

Okay, so Mr. Met isn’t as bad as Big Shot. But I know the Phillie Phanatic, and you, Mr. Met, are no Phillie Phanatic.

Update: A buddy in my fantasy league adds, “But don’t worry, Mr. Met will choke and the Phanatic will take over his spot.” A good point.

America’s Top Sports Mascots [Forbes via MetsBlog]

Libraries Open Through June

Yesterday, the Nutter administration decided that the 11 libraries stated for closure would remain open through the end of the fiscal year (June 30). Huzzah! Let’s get a quote:

“What we heard loud and clear from the public was that the public felt that keeping libraries open is a priority,” said Don Schwartz, deputy mayor for health and opportunity.

Wait. What? The deputy mayor for health and opportunity?! Jesus. Can I be deputy mayor for transportation, hope, change and progress?

Anyway: Libraries open ’til at least the end of June.

Keep checking out those books: City says 11 library branches will stay open through June [Daily News]
Image by thisisbossi used under a Creative Commons license

Obama Presidency Means We Can Never Watch Old Movies Again

A letter on a crucial, crucial issue in today’s Daily News:

I HOPE CABLE TV and Channel 12 won’t broadcast the old movie “Imitation of Life” during the rest of January or February.

This is a special time for African-Americans, and we don’t need to be confronted with that movie. If anybody broadcasts this movie, I’ll consider it inappropriate and will make every effort to have their broadcasting license revoked.

I’m aware that the fans of “Imitation of Life” will have a “75/50″ celebration this year - the 75th anniversary of the Claudette Colbert original and the 50th anniversary of the Lana Turner remake. If you want to celebrate a 75/50, I suggest you celebrate the upcoming 75th birthday of Shirley MacLaine and the 50th anniversary of “Ask Any Girl,” one of Shirley’s first hits.

(Lady readers: I’m familiar with “Ask Any Girl,” and it is a blizzard of pumps. Yes, I know what pumps are.)

Tim Short, Bryn Mawr

Ahh, yes, the ever-popular 75/50 celebration that people can’t just get enough of! I do like that Mr. Short is going to make every effort to take away the broadcast licenses of the local PBS station and several cable channels, despite the lack of broadcasting license for him to be able to have revoked for the cable networks. But, hey, watch out WHYY and NJN!

A bit of explanation: Imitation of Life is a 1934 movie with a 1959 remake. Both films include a light-skinned black character attempting to pass as white. I’ve never seen either, but perhaps the films — like a lot of old movies — include now-offensive racial stereotypes. That’s my best guess.

So… yeah, I still have no idea. But I hope Mr. Short will also criticize any parents who show their children Dumbo next month, and I really don’t think he’s going to let any Film 101 class show Birth of a Nation.

Letters: An inappropriate moment for ‘Imitation of Life’ [Daily News]

Abridged Daily News Columnists

John Baer: It’s a crisis! It’s time for bipartisanship! Just like in the run-up to the Iraq War! Oh wait, that didn’t work out so well! Anyway, Baer has some pretty awesome examples of how hilariously corrupt government in general is, though:

A small example: Rendell’s budget address next week was pushed back a day because many lawmakers plan to attend Sunday’s Super Bowl in Tampa, and because a Steelers win means celebrations Tuesday in Pittsburgh.

Not that pushing the people’s business back just 24 hours makes much difference. It’s more the message it sends about priorities.

Another small example: In the midst of a hiring freeze and possible layoffs of up to 2,000 state workers, Rendell hands a newly created, $95,000 job to defeated Democratic lawmaker Dan Surra, of Elk County, to be an adviser on forest and games lands, backpacking and trout fishing.

Which reminds me: Check out this list of press releases, and search “Conti.” We’re sure getting quite a good deal out of the CEO of the Liquor Control Board!

Stu Bykofsky: Stu opens today calling a local meteorologist — no one in particular — a “weatherdoll.” Sexist? Hmm, I’m not sure. Let’s go with “strange and outdated” instead. Especially since the best-known weather forecasters in this town are a guy in a bow tie and a dude with slick-back black hair. Anyway, here’s his hilarious joke of the day:

AccuFeather, Shmoppler, EarthItch, Watchamacallit, it’s all the same.

Ha ha, EarthItch!! Oh, mercy.

Ronnie Polaneczky: I hope we’re all in agreement that people who complain when someone does something “wrong” with the flag — such as the 82-year-old who is pissed about flags at half-staff at a local charter school — are people we should not listen to about anything, ever. And, hey, what do you know! Polaneczky criticizes Imhotep Charter School for lowering the flag to half-staff for that studen shot by a cop. Duh. Can’t these people grieve or cope in an approved socially acceptable way?!

Tierney: Chasing Cars, Wielding Bats

There’s a big ol’ Steve Volk article in February’s Philadelphia magazine about Brian Tierney and the Inquirer, and how newspapers are dying if not dead, and Philebrity and Phawker, and Will Bunch and norgs. Norgs! I know. I feel like I’ve wandered into a time portal to late 2005, too. Man, can you believe that two Central Missouri State professors just found the 43rd Mersenne prime?! That Bush sure messed up during Hurricane Katrina! Pretty sweet that there were parliamentary elections in Iraq, recently, though.

But there is one pretty amazing story. Take it, Newspaper Guild representative Bill Ross:

And Ross says a couple of people emerged from a private meeting with the CEO claiming that he’d spoken to them, in his 12th-floor office, with a baseball bat in his hands. Ross also adds that in January, Tierney took to patrolling the parking garage, watching to see what time employees were arriving to work and asking managers about those who were late. “That’s what I’m getting calls about now,” says Ross. “He’s walking around the parking garage. If he gets hit by a car, it’ll be his own fault.”

First off: Tierney needs to watch out for this car. I mean, that’s probably the fastest one in the whole lot. Second off: The Phillies should totally sign Tierney as a bat off the bench.

1978 Called. It Wants Its Newspaper Back [Phillymag]

Fun With Newspaper Leads

“Have a nice day” was not exactly what Jon Bon Jovi said to the former sales manager of the Philadelphia Soul, who alleges that the rock icon and his partners in the Arena Football League team have not paid him nearly $125,000 in wages and commissions

“It’s my life,” said Bon Jovi, claiming that he did not owe the sales manager any extra money. He added the manager did not do a good job and was “a little runaway,” frequently missing meetings, and would “never say goodbye” beforehand. He said they had a little saying at the office about this guy: “Wanted: Dead or Alive.”

Jovi added several other statements about his time with the Soul. “Everyday” and “Always,” he said, was this guy paid his money, adding the team even bought his wife a “Bed of Roses.”

Later, Jovi seemed distraught. “Say It Isn’t So,” he said, adding that he needed “Something for the Pain.” He did add, though, that he was going to “Keep the Faith.”

Suit: Phila. Soul partners owe nearly $125,000 [Inquirer]
Image by Anirudh Koul used under a Creative Commons license

Boot Removal Fines Go Way Up

When some people get the boot put on their car (for, say, unpaid parking tickets), they do the only plausible thing: Use magical powers to take it off and drive away scot free. Or maybe they use a jackhammer or crowbar or something. Apparently you can also deflate the tire and a few other tricks.

The city doesn’t like this, obviously, and so recently City Council began the process to raise fines for boot removal! Everyone’s favorite public servant, Vince Fennerty of the Philadelphia Parking Authority, explained to a Council committee:

“There are people in the city that think they can cut a boot off. It’s illegal.”

Fennerty is mum on how it’s done: “The boots are very sophisticated. I don’t believe it is crow-bar oriented. And I will not comment further because I don’t want to give anyone any ideas.”

He asked for a $400 raise of the $300 fine, but Council went one better and made it $1000. I am certain the people with unpaid parking tickets will now be deterred. Erhm.

Higher Fines Planned for Phila. ”Boot” Escape Artists [KYW 1060]

Antique Row Shops Say End Is Nigh

Last week’s Center City Weekly Press did not contain any Bob Jovi references or 2003 Super Bowl previews. But it did contain a dire prediction for Antique Row!

The quaint strip of stores from 7th-13th and Pine St., which sell everything from antique books, collectibles, jewelry, furniture, household decor as well as gifts might soon cease to exist.

Oh no! Did somebody put Wilson Goode back in charge and have him drop a bomb on the whole strip?

Hmm, I see. Seems that the Philadelphia Water Department’s proposed “Pine Street Storm Relief Project” will rip up the street and sidewalks for two years, and the Antique Rowners (those are owners of shops on Antique Row, duh) are calling it the end times. For their shops, at least.

Says John Arneth of Adornamenti: “Business depends a lot on foot traffic. Wooden planks would be installed on the sidewalks and the kinds of people who shop along Pine St. are not going to want to walk along them.” Totally true. Those antique shoppers on Pine Street hate boardwalks. Hate ‘em! When they go down the shore, they go to Sea Isle City, because it has a promenade instead.

It’s almost certain the business owners are not playing Chicken Little here; construction usually impacts businesses, especially when it lasts for several years. (Plus, the Rowners say, this project will rip out all the trees!) But apparently the city needs to tear up some street for two years in order to prevent raw sewage from leaking into the basements of homes in the River Wards. However! The project was also going to go down the entire of pine street, but the Richie Riches of Society Hill — armed with the backing of the ghost of Edmund Bacon — put a stop to it. It’s war between the upper class and upper middle class!

Oh, and in case you’re worried about the potential construction on your favorite beer place, the Foodery, please don’t be alarmed.

“The only businesses that might not be seriously impacted,” added Arneth would be restaurants like Pine St. Pizza, Mixto or the Foodery, “because people will find a way to buy their beer.”

I have a solution: Do the construction, but let the shops on Antique Row sell beer. It’s a win-win!

Philadelphia Water Department puts Antique Row in jeopardy [Weekly Press via DesignPhiladelphia]

Photo by waving at you used under a Creative Commons license Poll Of The Day

Yes, this is the poll question of the day. Currently, the results: 59 percent say no! I guess all those commenters spend less than half of their time on Stormfront. Who knew?

Abridged Daily News Columnists

Jill Porter: Somebody made dolls of the Obama kids! But what we really need now, Porter says, is a corrupt politician doll! Umm, whatever you say.