Don’t @ Me: Gritty Is the Mascot We Need AND Deserve

Gritty Is Imperfection Made Perfect

  • Graphic Aiden Locke

The Internet loves Gritty. Leftists love Gritty. Most of all, I love Gritty.

Gritty is everything a mascot needs to be. Not only are they not an obvious play on whatever animal or person the team is named after, they’re also extremely fuzzy (and probably give amazing hugs.)

They also represent the Philadelphia Flyers extremely well. The team was known in the 1970s as the “Broad Street Bullies” for their physical and, dare I say, gritty style of play.

Even after that era, the Flyers became synonymous with physical players, like goalie Ron Hextall, the famous Legion of Doom line of Eric Lindros, John LeClair, and Mikael Renberg in the mid 90s, and the Cinderella story 2010 Flyers who made the Stanley Cup Finals despite incredible odds, winning a do-or-die game on the last day of the season to even make the playoffs in the first place— that’s only naming a few key moments and players in the Flyers’ 50 plus year history.

Besides, think about it. Except maybe Youppi!, what other mascots can you name? No, Buzz doesn’t count.

Exactly. Gritty’s omnipresence in the minds of people when they think of mascots isn’t for nothing.

Gritty perfectly encapsulates the spirit of the Flyers, but they also perfectly encapsulate the feel of a generation: ours.

Gritty is all of us, their weirdness speaks to us because if you haven’t noticed, we’re also fucking weird. Have you seen Twitter or Instagram? I’ve embraced Gritty, and it’s safe to say most people have as well, because of the sheer bizarreness of their being that we don’t just understand; we relate to it on a deep level.

Gritty isn’t a perfect mascot, far from it. In fact, when you look at them, Gritty looks really goofy and looks exactly like the opposite of what the classic boardroom vision of a crisp and clean family-friendly mascot that’s good for being traditionally cute. But that’s what makes Gritty so perfect in their own way. They aren’t neat and clean. They’re rough, and dirty, and unique.

In a way, we’ve all got the needed grit to get through the hell that is living in 2018, and Gritty is the visual representation of how we feel living in our contemporary hellscape. The frazzled hair? The bugged out eyes? No one can tell me they haven’t felt like Gritty looks this year.

Gritty isn’t just the Philadelphia Flyers’ mascot, Gritty is our mascot, and we love them for it. As weird and unpredictable 2018 has been, so has Gritty. Gritty isn’t just a part of the wacky year we’ve had to experience, Gritty is 2018.

Plus, it doesn’t hurt that Gritty can probably punch a nazi with the best of them.

Gritty might not be the cutest mascot in the world, or the mascot that’s going to make the kids dance the most during intermission. But damn it, Gritty rules so much.

Let’s be real, I would probably die for Gritty, because I know Gritty would do the same for me (and Gritty’s probably immortal anyway so I don’t have to worry about it).

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