Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Viking funeral

Faithful followers of the Blob -- pipe down, you two -- know its position on mascots. Its position on mascots is that there can never be enough mascots, or fights between mascots, or news about mascots, even when it involves bars and the skinny hours of the morning.

But now I'm adding a new category: Negotiations involving mascots.

That's because out of the frozen wilds of Minnesota comes this, and it goes without saying the Blob is all in with the workers on this one. Or, rather, all in with the worker, who goes by the handle "Ragnar" and shows up at Minnesota Vikings games dressed as, well, a Viking, only cooler because he also charges around on an awesome purple-and-gold motorcycle.

I mean, look at the picture at the bottom of the story. You're gonna tell me that's not worth $20,000 a game?

That's what Ragnar is demanding from the Vikes, who of course aren't about to knuckle under. And so Ragnar sits at home wearing his animal skins and drinking wine out of the skulls of dead Northumbrians whose villages he has pillaged.

 Or so I like to imagine.

In any event, this is the Vikings' loss.  It's their loss, first of all, because mascots are an integral part of the whole football ethos -- which is to say, who the heck else are the Vikings gonna trot out there to get the paying customers fired up? I mean, it's not like Joe Kapp's just sitting around waiting on them to call or anything.

What's no doubt worrisome to the Vikings, and to everyone else nervously looking in on this impasse, is what happens if this becomes a trend. Imagine the chaos that would ensue, for instance, if the leprechaun were suddenly to put the arm on Notre Dame. And can you imagine the uproar should the Oregon Duck, the greatest mascot in all of sports, suddenly decide he wants a cut of all that dough Oregon spends on its 9,237 different football uniforms?

Why, you can just imagine the negotiations ...

The Duck: OK, here's the skinny. I want $6 mill guaranteed over 10 years, backloaded, or I bolt to some hockey team in the ECHL. I know a club in Fort Wayne that has an eagle mascot they'd like to pair me with.

Oregon: No way. You get the standard deal. Free tickets to all the games and all the McDonald's you can eat. That's our final offer.

 The Duck: Really? Man, I can't believe you people. Have you forgotten so soon the way I lit into the Washington State Cougar and kicked his ass? I could have been killed. OK, so not really, because, well, it was just the Washington State Cougar. But what if it had been that Trojan down at USC? Do you realize what he could do to me with that sword of his?

Oregon: Sorry. No dice.

Duck: Well, in that case ...

(Shouting, sounds of chairs overturning as the Duck leaps across the table and begins pummeling Oregon athletic director Rob Mullens).

Tragic, I tell you. Tragic.



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