Back in late April I suggested that it would be good to have a team called the Establishment. At the end of that piece I invited readers to come up with a logo for that team, with the promise of a free membership card or a piece of swag to the person who submitted the best design.
A handful of readers responded — and then I forgot all about it.
So today we’re taking an overdue look at what the Establishment’s logo might look like. There weren’t that many entries, so let’s look at all of them:
“I am by no means an artist, but this would be the basic concept of my logo idea. Faceless, just daring you to challenge them to something.”
“It’s my (schooled) opinion that a logo should use minimal type and be visually expressive,” says Matthiew. “I worked six minutes on this — I hope you’re smirking.”
Gregg provided a press release for his logo:
Inspired by an optimistic description of the future made in 1948, the elements that directly depict the Establishment are quite detailed, while those that represent the plebeian are more generic, so the viewer can readily tell what matters most. It’s basically all shades of gray, as exploiting nuance is one of the Establishment’s greatest advantages. The white area is reserved for co-branding with marketing partners, so look to see leading social indicators, including Apple, GM, media conglomerates, major political parties and the like. Collect the whole set! The downward path of the wordmark evokes the downward movement of the boot. The typeface reflects all the Establishment has to offer. If you look closely, you’ll note that the boot is a galosh. This not only protects The Man’s garb from contact with the untermensch but adds an extra note of humiliation to the target.
“To me, the Establishment immediately suggests a gray pinstripe suit with tie” says Jeff. “Pinstripes pretty much equal baseball, so my “Establishment” is a baseball club. It’s a sorta rough sketch of what I have in my head (the shape of the “e/tie” could really use some streamlining, as well as the shadows) since my Adobe Illustrator skills fall far behind my InDesign and Photoshop skills. But it gives the idea.”
“I’m no artist, but I’m fairly proud of my meeting-doodles, so I took a stab at this,” says John. “The first two logos are different takes on a briefcase; the red ‘E’ is supposed to look like a ‘TOP SECRET’ stencil. The other logo is a necktie. Why did I use purple? Not to give you an itch, but one overarching theme of Uni Watch has been to challenge the perception of uniformity as presented by the corporate, the mainstream, the Establishment. What better color to represent the Big E.”
“You said it yourself — the Establishment is a nameless, faceless monolith,” says Pat. “So I went with that.”
“I imagined a team called the Establishment would need a shorter nickname, kinda like the D-Backs or Fins, hence the Blish,” says Gordon. “For the logo, I went with the Eye of Providence from the dollar bill, except as Brandiose would interpret it, with forward motion and an angry eye. Keeping with the legal tender theme, the wordmark and number typeface are also derived from our currency. Finally, I named the colors with all the pretentious arrogance I imagine Nike would bring to the project.”
“It’s a study in contrasts, similar to the contradictory nature of the Establishment and all of our roles in it,” says this designer, who prefers to remain anonymous. “The penguin is nurturing the ball on his feet (similar to how a penguin would warm an egg) yet brandishing the bat as a symbol of control and coercion. The black and white colors of the penguin also reinforce the theme of contrast. I’d like to say the formality of the tuxedo contrasts with the casual execution of the design, but actually I was away for a few days and didn’t have time to do anything more polished. But at least it fits the thesis.”
As you can see above (or by clicking here), Jordan prepared four different designs. He offered no commentary on them.
So that’s it. I’ll be honest: None of these feels exactly dead-on right to me, but there are three I like better than the others: John Muir’s briefcase (suit color notwithstanding), Denver Gregg’s boot to the face, and Pat Smith’s black box. Now I’ll let you folks choose the winner:
The two gents you see above are reader Marty Buccafusco and, of course, weekend editor Phil Hecken, who were among the two dozen or so folks who joined me last night to celebrate Uni Watch’s 15th anniversary. It was a great night — my thanks to everyone who showed up. More photos (hopefully without odd eyeball reflections) and details in a day or two.
’Skins Watch: The Yocha Dehe Wintun Nation had prepared an anti-’Skins commercial to run during the Super Bowl last winter. It didn’t air then (although it was posted online), but it ended up airing last night during Game 3 of the NBA Finals. … The ’Skins have hired a K Street lobbying group to push back against those who are calling for the team’s name to be changed. … The ’Skins are also conducting focus groups about the team’s name, among other things (from Tommy Turner). … Good article on how a lifelong ’Skins fan changed his mind and now thinks the team’s name should be changed. Interestingly, he ties it into the state culture of Maryland. … The singer Pharrell Williams has issued an apology after appearing on the cover of the UK edition of Elle magazine in an Indian headdress (from the New Girl).
Baseball News: This year’s flag-desecration caps for July 4 have now been officially released. Those are the only two photos available, but they confirm SB Nation’s earlier report that the American League teams will have red crowns and navy brims, and the N.L. will have vicey-versey. We could critique these on all sorts of aesthetic grounds (the design is too busy, teams like the A’s and Giants will look like shit because they don’t have blue or red in their color schemes, Yankees will look odd with red crowns, Astros will look odd with a star upon a star, etc.), but that misses the point, which is that there’s no need for special “U! S! A!” caps in the first place. … A recent “Open Carry rally” in Texas featured several long gun-toting rallyers wearing Texas Rangers jerseys and T-shirts. … Reprinted from Monday’s comments: Four years ago I wrote an ESPN piece about a faux-flannel baseball uniform fabric that Under Armour had developed. Looks like Rawlings is now offering something similar. … Brian Wulff was looking through some of his father’s stuff and came across a scorecard and ticket stub from the first home game in Mets history. … While looking for something else, I came across this photo of Bob Boone and was immediately struck with this thought of, “Yup, that was his mask.” I associate that single-bar style with him. Was he the last one to wear it? … Very nice uniforms for Lemont High School in Illinois (from Bill Hupp). … Vanderbilt is wearing “JCW” decals on their cleats and batting helmets in memory of Clyde Walker, a long time associate director at Vanderbilt whose son is a student manager for the baseball team (from Jeff LeCraw). … The Phillies and Cubs will wear 1964 throwbacks this Friday. Vendors will be retro-attired as well. And the Phillies — but not the Cubs, I’m pretty sure — will wear the ’64 throwbacks again on Sunday. … Batman-themed jerseys on tap for the Lehigh Valley IronPigs (thanks, Phil). … This is interesting: The ticket clerks at Safeco Field have a chart that shows which parts of the stadium will be in sunlight and shade at various times of day throughout the season. So simple, and so sensible — wish every team did this (big thanks to Daniel Carroll). … Nelson Cruz of the Orioles suffered a serious pant tear last night. Meanwhile, his teammate David Lough, who usually goes low-cuffed, went high-cuffed with black/orange socks (from Brian Mazmanian and Bryan Duklewski, respectively). … Love this little 1960s Cubs decal, although it’s too bad about the Texaco logo (thanks, Phil).
NFL News: The Broncos’ old bucking horsey logo works surprisingly well on a graffiti-covered van (from Denver Gregg). … Dig this: a 49ers-themed birdhouse! Looks like it might scare the birds, though. That same Etsy seller has all sorts of sports-themed items (from Jay Sullivan). … At Jags OTAs, some players wear shorts while others wear old game pants that have been hemmed up high (from Clint Richardson).
College Football News: Here’s how the Big XII logo will look on the Longhorns’ jersey (thanks, Phil). … New gear for Nebraska: warm-ups and coach’s pullover (from Warren Junium). … The 2013 Iron Bowl was shown on ESPNU yesterday, and Auburn punter Steven Clark was losing one of his helmet logo decals (from Clint Richardson).
Hockey News: In last week’s ESPN column, I noted that the Rangers’ jerseys are unusual because they don’t have a crest. Adrian Acosta wonders if that might be a competitive advantage: “I own a bunch of Rangers Jerseys and they fit like a T-shirt — no bunching up, not too heavy, etc.,” he says. “I’ve tried on other teams’ jerseys at the NHL Store and have been annoyed by the big crests. When you sit down, they are stiff and bunch up on your lap. Does this affect the players? Do equipment managers have a special way of washing the jerseys that makes the crests more pliable?” … USA Hockey has endorsed the “look up line,” which is sort of like a warning track for hockey. … If you go to this page and seach on the term “second movie,” you’ll see a good description of how the Mighty Ducks’ uniforms were designed by the Disney movie costume department (from Eric Romain).
NBA News: I have seen next season’s Christmas Day uniforms, and I can tell you this much: Unlike last year’s designs, they don’t have sleeves. And unlike the previous year’s designs, you can actually read the letting and numbering. … With the Clippers apparently poised to enter a new ownership era, should they get a new look, or even a new name? … “When coming back from commercials during the NBA Finals, ESPN and ABC use a graphic featuring an animated basketball that’s shot and rolls around a rim before the Goodyear blimp comes and tips it in,” says Josh Williams. “It looks simple enough, they’ve been using it for years. But the ball they use in the ad is the ball design that was introduced in 2006 and then pulled. I guess they either figured they could get away with it or they just forgot.”
Soccer News: Adidas is selling the World Cup ball for $160. Acccording to the third graf of this story, the Pakistani women who make the ball are paid only $100 per month. “Disgusting,” says John Flanagan. … Pure gold here: the World Cup uniform regulations. Further info here (thanks, Phil). … Latest media outlet to do a ranking of World Cup uniforms: GQ magazine (Phil again). … American soccer fans are adopting foreign rituals and traditions into their rooting culture. … Puma is having trouble keeping up with Adidas and Nike (thanks again, Phil). … New for this World Cup: vuvuzelas are out, caxirolas are in. … And here are the fan chants you can expect to hear at the Cup (Phil again). … Here’s another interactive inforgrpahic showing World Cup jerseys through history and a series of team-specific World Cup infographic posters (from Brian Tyacke and Phil, respectively). … Another article on the competition between World Cup kit manufacturers. … According to this article, the Rio de Janeiro airport features “plenty of porters in maroon uniforms hoping to persuade gullible tourists to illegally exchange dollars and euros for [Brazilian] reals.” … If you always wanted to see Cristiano Renaldo trying on a New York Jets helmet, today’s your lucky day. … New kit for Celtic FC (Phil again). … Brazil’s Catholic church is threatening a lawsuit over an Italian commercial that shows the famous “Christ the Redeemer” statue in an Italian soccer jersey.
Grab Bag: Just what the world’s been waiting for: a bike helmet that works like a mood ring. … Here’s the helmet design for the Ohio-Michigan Border Classic, a new high school football all-star game (from Steve Lemke). … Dig this: Nike commissioned a statue of Rafael Nadal made of French Open clay (thanks, Phil). … Hundreds of knitters will be decorating Cambridge, England, with Tour de France mini-jerseys. … Many Canadian citizens are wearing red in honor of three Mounties who were recently killed in the line of duty. … New logo for Milwaukee’s Park East Corridor. … Coca-Cola is producing a series of bottles with the Coke brand name replaced by slogans and popular first names.