The first place Chicago White Sox have a fan among superfans in Soxman. Since the World Series championship of 2005, you've seen the southside's caped crusader all over local media. I put the Sox signal out for an exclusive, and our very own dark knight answered...
We've seen you all over the place: Red Eye, WGN, WCIU among many other media outlets, what's been the key to your media saviness? What outlets and media personalities do you prefer to work with? Who would you like to work with, but haven't yet?
Over the years I have worked with four different sports editors at the Chicago Red Eye and it was an awesome experience working with all of them. They take pop culture, sports, creativity and consistently turn out informative but entertaining pieces. They mastered the art of witty, short statements in their very own Five on Five feature years before Twitter or Facebook Wall Posts.
While I know many signs point to print media dying, there is no greater honor than making a public appearance or going to a game and having someone shake her hand just to tell you how much they love reading our articles. Being their White Sox correspondent for the last few years and having my own weekly column last year was a dream come true.
I grew up listening to Eddie V. and Jobo on B96 and now being able to call those guys my friends is almost surreal. They are supremely down to Earth and completely humble guys. I’d gladly collaborate with them anytime they needed me and I’m glad to see them going strong on 104.3 KHits now.
Working with the WGN Morning News is also a lot of fun. Pat Tomasulo has one heck of a fan base and yet doesn’t ever come across as arrogant or better than anyone else. I loved working with him, especially on the infamous Ronnie Woo Woo piece that we did going into the Cub\Sox series in 2006 when Michael Barrett punched A.J. Pierzynski.
True story, on opening day this year, two girls gave Frank Thomas their camera and asked him to take a picture of them with Pat Tomasulo! That’s juice.
WCIU’s Aly Bockler is honestly one of the more underrated reporters in Chicago! She’s extremely creative and what I love best about working with her is that she embraces your ideas in putting a piece together. We often quickly discuss what we’re going to do before going live, rather than just “winging it” like many people do. I think you develop better chemistry with the talent that way and it shows on screen.
Media savvy? Thanks many but I consider myself media blessed.
I would absolutely love to get on either MLB Network’s Quick Pitch or ESPN’s baseball tonight beyond being a highlight in the stands. I think the White Sox would at least have to make it to the World Series again for that to happen.
If they would ever have the courage to have me on, I’d LOVE to talk White Sox or baseball period with other sports writers and sportscasters on Chicago Tribune Live or a talk program like that. I’m sure they’d have circus concerns, but they might also be surprised. I think I would hold my own, while creating some very entertaining television don’t you think?
Preaching to the converted man. Me and you both should be a part of these "roundtables." What questions would you prefer the media start asking you instead of the queries that you usually get?
While the question “How did I become Soxman” is getting old, I understand why people still ask it. The bottom line is that new people are discovering Soxman all the time and you have to tell the story to those people as well.
This said, my name is Soxman. As me any question about the team, my favorite memory in costume, my outlook for the season, questions about the Dark Knight…anything!
There is more to me than the zany guy with “underwear on his head” as one news caster once said.
The character can be funny, can complete skits to get a laugh but can also talk White Sox baseball and many other sports as well.
In an ideal world, what opportunities do you see for Soxman and Batboy, what could your "franchise" become?
A movie of course! It would of course be followed by the official Soxman and Batboy t-shirts, toys and comic books!
Just kidding. I think staying humble keeps you real and “down to earth” with the people who truly made me, the fans. I’d love to continue using the character for good, to raise money for charities and to help others.
I would love to see Soxman get a regular television segment.
Tell us what #soximistic is, and how to live it?
#Soximistic started on Twitter as a way to silence the White Sox critics (and there were many of them), who predicted the White Sox to be awful. As you know, I said all along that while it is a season of “what if’s,” with expected productivity from Dunn and Rios and a solid comeback from Peavy, we would compete.
Soximistic essentially optimism for the Sox fan. You need to learn it, love it, and LIVE IT!
In April, I thought they would lose 90 games this year, so I was among the doubters. But a hot streak has reminded me- hey this is essentially the same team that everyone was so high on in the 2011 preseason, so I believe. Tell us about working with Southpaw, the Sox official mascot. How is your relationship with him/her/it?
Twitter gave Southpaw a voice! Before that we communicated well with a series of shakes, nods and high fives. Southpaw is officially a part of the White Sox and does great work for charity. I get along with Southpaw very well and often have conversations with the character via Twitter on quick topics related to the White Sox.
Southpaw handles the mascot duties and I handle the Super Fan sports hero business.
Paul M. Banks is CEO of The Sports Bank.net, an official Google News site generating millions of unique visitors. He’s also a regular contributor to Chicago Now, Walter Football.com, Yardbarker, MSN and Fox Sports
A Fulbright scholar and MBA, Banks has appeared on live radio all over the world; and he’s a member of the Football Writers Association of America, U.S. Basketball Writers Association, and Society of Professional Journalists. The President of the United States follows him on Twitter (@Paul_M_BanksTSB) You should too