Rolling Stone's status as the home of writers sleeping on concert tour buses and Hunter S. Thompson filing pages of tirades against Richard Nixon made it one of the most cutting edge mediums in American history. Since then, it has worked hard to distance itself from this image.
The formerly readable medium's reputation slid a little bit further recently with the publishing of a story on a day in the life or Mr. Met, the "hardest working mascot in NYC."
First of all, if the Yankees had a mascot, it would be instantly more popular. Instantly. But, Derek Jeter is retiring, so they've run out of options in the Bronx.
Secondly, culture is trying to sway Mr. Met in front of the Phanatic as the most popular mascot, something that is a sign of far more nefarious motives at play.
The Mets will be good again sooner than the Phillies, certainly, so perhaps this is an underground PR play by the front office in Flushing, Queens. Maybe baseball hipsters are just pushing for a new face at the top of mascots list.
"At the time, the New York Mets were 57-64, fourth in the National League East and barely clinging to faint playoff hopes (if you were an optimist). None of that mattered. To these kids, not to mention two generations of long-suffering fans and more than a few celebs, Mr. Met remains an icon."
The Phillies themselves aren't helping, as they let the Phanatic get scouted by mascotless teams this season, one of the more grating signs of their growing desperation (would you pull the trigger on a Trout-for-Phanatic-Utley-Franco-and-Giles deal)?
But hey, maybe things aren't so bad. Everyone is desperate to high-five the Phanatic, but Mr. Met's biggest problem seems to be getting punched in the testicles.
"Once in a while, things get out of hand. 'People will try to hit Mr. Met in the privates,' one of his handlers tells me."
Meanwhile, the Phanatic is giving opposing fans popcorn showers and they're loving every kernel of it.