Cubs new mascot Clark
The great-grandson of Joa
What are they thinking?
On Monday the Cubs introduced their new mascot, a bear-cub named "Clark" who wears his hat backwards. Clark is reportedly the great-grandson of a live bear named Joa, who was the team's mascot for a few months almost 100 years ago before he "retired to the Lincoln Park Zoo, [where] he delighted the young bears with amazing stories." I am not making this up. They're calling Clark "unbearably cute." That's half right. Really, he's just going to be unbearable.
The announcement on the Cubs website claims that Clark "was created as a response to survey feedback and fan interviews. According to the team, people wanted more Cubs-related family-friendly entertainment at Wrigley Field." I completed some on-line surveys and recall some questions about making a trip to a Cubs game more "family friendly". But I don't remember questions about a mascot. I would have remembered questions about a mascot. If there were questions about a mascot my response would have been "What the fuck are you thinking? The Cubs don't need a mascot. We need a better product on the field."
Chances are that by "family friendly" people meant cheaper tickets, cheaper food and fewer obnoxious drunks sitting nearby. This announcement is just another indication that baseball will not be the main product the Cubs are selling this summer. Yes, we're in a rebuilding year ... or two ... or three. But it looks like the Wrigley Field centennial celebration and the unbearable mascot are being promoted as the major attractions at 1060 W. Addison in 2014.
The Cubs are trying to reassure fans, saying that we "won't see the mascot on top of the dugout between innings ... and it won't disrupt the game ... Most of the time, Clark will welcome fans to his own clubhouse at Wrigley Field, where families can visit." MOST OF THE TIME? It would be better, given that Clark exists, if he was banned from the "seating bowl" from the first pitch until the final out. But the announcement merely says that "fans won't see the new mascot riding an ATV around the warning track or interfering with their views of the field during the game," Given the decision by the Cubs that a mascot somehow fulfills a desire among fans for a more "family-friendly" experience, I worry about what they will consider to be "interfering" with our views of the field.
It's bad enough we have to tolerate a crappy team on the field. If we're not careful, Clark is going to be encouraging fans to start a "wave" through the stands at Wrigley Field.
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Filed under: Cubs