02 June, 2008

Mascot of the Week Special – The Milwaukee Brewers’ Racing Sausages

Every so often a story falls onto the STT editorial desk that just blows everything else out of the water. Something so strange and hypnotically captivating, that it simply demands attention, football-related or not. Something that is just so conceptually brilliant that it takes very little work our end, simply because it cannot get any more ridiculous than it already is. As you can probably guess from the above picture, this is one of those milestones.

I can only assume that people in the state of Milwaukee are subject to high quantities of hallucinogens in their water, or are just literally insane. How else can you possibly explain that their baseball team, the Brewers, have five enormous sausages as mascots, and they all have their own personalities and frequently race each other around the stadium. Legend has it that the Racing Sausages (to give them their ‘official’ title) started to take shape in the early 90s, having made their debut in a low-budget cartoon running a virtual race every home game on the giant scoreboard in centerfield. Understandably they developed a cult following among drug users and the mentally cretinous, and it wasn’t long before they made the leap into the real world. Bratwurst (#1), Polish Sausage (#2) and the Italian Sausage (#3) made their debut at County Stadium on selected Sundays throughout the season, first appearing in the flesh as a surprise just when the sausage racing video was due to start one game.

What started as a fun way to entertain kids during the unbelievably dull ‘sport’ quickly became a hit…well, a phenomenon to be more precise. The three original Sausages added a fourth when Hot Dog (#4) joined the motley crew in the mid-90s, and in 2007, Chorizo (#5) officially joined the Racing Sausages after a teasing guest appearance in 2006. During the 2000 season, the final year of play at County Stadium, the virtual race was finally scrapped and the actual Sausages began to race one another every game for kudos and first pick of the groupies. This tradition continued as the Brewers moved to Miller Park in 2001, and running with the Sausages took on a life of its own; locals began to aspire more to dive into one of the costumes to race than to actually play for the Brewers themselves.

We thought it was only right then to give you all a quick profile of the sausages themselves, in the hope that you might develop a favourite and maybe even get involved in a betting syndicate for the next big race…

#1 Bratwurst

The Sausages’ official fansite suggests that the Bratwurst has a history with the German Olympic team, weight-lifting every day to achieve an intimidating physique. His blinkered win-at-all-costs attitude would certainly reflect this, and he is not above spiking the water bottles of his competitors to gain an extra little advantage.

Bratwurst’s racing style is aggressive, with a fast start key, but unfortunately he tends to tail off towards the end of races with his small little legs struggling to propel his gym-bulked upper body.

#2 Polish Sausage

Polish Sausage comes from a history of construction work back in his native land, but immigration forced him to change up his trade, and before joining the Sausages he was children’s swim-coach by day, and a scout-leader by night. He is sympathetic and sensitive, with (what some might call) an unhealthy knowledge of Pokemon and computer games.

He is slow out of the blocks, however when the time comes to make his move, Polish Sausage always gets what he wants, Megan’s Law or not.

#3 Italian Sausage

Perhaps predictably Italian Sausage used to be a pizza chef, but let’s face it, if you’re born with a face like his, what else can you ever become? His speciality was a world-beating calzone, which used to contain precisely 100 separate ingredients, but he left it all behind after being head-hunted by the Brewers scouts.

Italian Sausage’s main strength is staying under the radar during races, happy to stick with the pack so as not to attract attention, and then darting out into the lead on the home stretch.

#4 Hot Dog

This all-American hero is an ex-Navy Seal who has now developed a reputation for being a bit of a joker in the locker room. He has a big heart and has quickly become a crowd favourite because of his tireless drive and 110% commitment.

Hot Dog’s racing style is erratic to say the least however, often yo-yoing between first and last place with no middle ground. Media conjecture points towards the use of artificial enhancement in the form of French’s Mustard, but nothing has been proven as of yet.

#5 Chorizo

A Central American powerhouse, Chorizo has plenty of running experience having cut his teeth in the ultra-competitive Honduran cerveza circuit. He is a fiery and passionate character, with often violent mood-swings should people get up in his grill. His hobbies include salsa dancing and wearing a sombrero.

Still a rookie, Chorizo is excitable off the blocks but unfortunately hasn’t quite developed the endurance required to follow-through to the finish-line in first place. His time will come though; a prodigious talent for the future.

The success of the Sausages has ballooned out of all proportion, with merchandise including action figures and branded condoms exploding out of Miller Park these days. Fans of all ages clamor for autographs and pictures, while some terminally ill patients even journey for hundreds of miles just for a high five with their favourite Sausage.

There are those around the States however who don’t share this love of the Sausages; beings so dead inside that they openly detest the fab fivesome, and a bitter war of words has been sparked. I am of course talking about a rival gang, known only as the Pittsburgh Pierogies. Now even with the help of Wikipedia, I’m still not totally sure what a pierogy/pierogie/whatever is, but it seems to be some kind of Ginsters slice. Anyway, these Pittsburgh pretenders-to-the-crown started talking a lot of shit about the Sausages, slinging mud about their personal lives and also their racing ability, so obviously there was only one way to settle it: a showdown on the race track. Following an intense build-up, which included a fight at the initial weigh-in and suggestion that Italian Sausage slept with one of the Pierogies’ wives, the pistol finally sounded and America stopped for about a minute. Of course the Sausages won, and the vicious Pierogies were silenced once and for all. Chalk another one up to the good guys.

12 comments:

Ryan said...

"people in the state of Milwaukee"

While it might be a state of mind, Milwaukee is certainly not one of our states. It's more of a city.

chalovesmonkeys said...

Sorry about the confusion Ryan - you'll be happy to know that the offending people have resigned, then been given their jobs back, then sacked.

We should have payed more attention to Wayne's World, where Alice Cooper told us that it's pronounced "mill-e-wah-que" which is Algonquin for "the good land."

We know how to party.

albionroad said...

We've got something similar here in DC, surely patterned off the racing sausages. At every Washington Nationals baseball game there's a race betweeen giant sausage-shaped creatures dressed as former presidents - Lincoln, Washington and Jefferson. I can't remember the exact scenario but one of them (I think Jefferson) nearly always, always, always loses. It's quite entertaining.

No, it's totally stupid but after a few beers it actually IS entertaining.

Anonymous said...

http://homerderby.com/archives/801

Some video footage. Check the two chilly peppers using some dirty tactics at the start... hilarious

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