Fans Can Say The Darndest Things……
Last week, I started following Hunter Pence on Twitter @HunterPence3, and I’ve enjoyed the fan pics that have been posted to show support to our new favorite right fielder. I have yet to create my own sign and bring to a Phillies game, but some of the ballgirls have definitely inspired me with their posterboard craftiness. Whether it’s a sign to show your support or to have some fun with the opposing team, creative signs at sports games are what keep us glued to the tv during commercial breaks. I found this Pence sign to be one of my personal favorites from his Twitter page. Even Pence tweeted back that he got a laugh out it!
About mid-September last year, my friend and I got tickets to a Phillies home game in Section 105, directly behind Jayson Werth. I think I might have overheard an announcer at some point referring to Werth as Mr. September – but I can’t remember what exactly put this idea in my head. All I know is Jayson Werth was on fire that month. So, next thing I know I’m making a sign with the head of Jayson Werth superimposed on the body of young Arnold Schwarzenegger (see picture), the entire time just laughing at the absurdity of this picture. So we show up at the game with this ridiculous picture of a Jayson Werth/Schwarzenegger combo and had people cracking up. Everyone in our section loved the poster. It got tons of laughs which was our #1 goal, and we were pretty sure that Werth saw it too. Unfortunately we never made it on PhanaVision or on TV (goal #2), despite the attempts of everyone around us, trying to get the camera crews’ attention.
But, the story doesn’t end there. We got tickets to a Phillies/Nationals game for later that month in Washington, and it just happened to be the night after the Phillies clinched the National League East title. We brought our Werth sign again, but this time (thanks to Roy Halladay) we updated our sign with “It’s Always Phunner in Philadelphia” on the back. Since Werth wasn’t in the game that night, we kept our “Phunner” side of the poster showing, and lucked out this time. We got phone calls and texts from people at home watching the game that our sign (and us) made it on TV – not once, not twice, but 3 times!
So, considering fans current obsession with a certain Phillies right-fielder, it only makes “Pence” that he be the subject of so many clever signs (the “only makes Pence” sign is my current favorite, by the way).
My family are not ones to usually make a creative sign and wave it around frantically in hopes of making the big screen, but one day that changed. Manny Ramirez’s peculiar actions back in Game 4 of the 2009 National League Championship Series must have really intrigued my parents because next thing I knew I found my mom coloring in bubble letters of two different posters. My mom did the artwork while my dad had the fun job of alternating posters throughout Game 5 and laughing with other Phillies fans as they read what his signs said. My parents had such a fun time with it, but I have not seen a poster since. We will have to wait and see what is poster worthy next…maybe something in this upcoming playoff season?!
Craftiness is my specialty. That being said, I’ve made quite a few sports related signs in my day. My first memory of bringing a sign into a Phils game dates back to the days of Veterans Stadium. I believe I was in about fifth grade at the time when I made a sign that I held up after every strike out made by a Phillies pitcher. On the front it read, “Today’s game is brought to you by the letter…” and on the back had a giant, “K,” on it (in reference to the phrase often used on Sesame Street). Pretty corny, I know. Most recently I made a set of signs for my cousin Greg, who at the time was pitching for the Padres and was making his first appearance in his hometown against the Phils. My mom, worried about getting boo’s for supporting a player from the opposing team, made sure it was clear on the sign that Greg, although a Padre, was a local boy and a member of a family of Phillies fans. The most memorable signs that I’ve witnessed at both the Vet and Citizens Bank Park would have to be those from The Wolf Pack, the Duck Pond, The Padilla Flotilla, and the many other groups that have inhabited the upper deck. I’m excited to see what creative ideas the fans will come up with during these next few home stands, many of which I’m sure will include the quote from Hunter Pence that everyone has been tweeting about, “Good game, let’s go eat!”
One of my favorite things to look for at a Phillies game is how creative our Philadelphia fans can be. Something I enjoy even MORE is seeing all the support from Phillies fans when we are on the road! Phillies fans are the most dedicated out there, and I love to see all of the signs in different cities. Two of my favorite posters were spotted during a Pirates/Phillies game and the second during a Padres/Phillies game. There is nothing better than a little friendly smack talk!
The day of my first Phillies game, I made a sign that read “GO PHILLIES!” It was made on a tiny piece of red construction paper, a last minute idea. At every game I attend, I look out for creative signs to see what our fans have to say. One day, I was excited to work Green Team so that I could see Hunter Pence on the field for the first time. As I looked around the stands, there were many Phillies fans with signs. I got a good laugh at a sign that struck me the most. This particular sign was in honor of our newest Phillie Hunter Pence. “Welcome to Pence-ylvania,” read the sign that caught my eye. I thought that the sign was very funny and creative.
Recently at a game at CBP I looked up at the jumbotron and saw a little girl holding up a sign that said “Future Ballgirl”. It reminded me of when I was younger and looked up to the Ballgirls so much. It was so heartwarming to see!
I love all the clever signs that appeared around the park when Matt Stairs used to play for the Phillies. My all time favorite would have to be “In case of Emergency, USE STAIRS!” I think I particularly like it because there was definitely a few emergencies in 2008 he helped us out of!
My younger brother made a poster about 10-15 years ago for Flyers/Devils playoff game. He spent hours on it using only orange and black colors. The sign said, “Flyers rule and Devils drool”. Not too original but for an elementary school kid he saw this as a great dig to the Devils and was very proud of himself. He had his poster under his arm and he and my mother left for the game. When they arrived home after the game the poster was nowhere in sight. I immediately asked him where it was and he yelled at me something I couldn’t understand and stormed off. My mom had to translate his screaming and explain that because the poster wasn’t considered a nice thing to say a security guard had taken it away from him. Now that my brother is in his 20s, whenever the Flyers and Devils face off, we always remind him of his famous poster.
Two summers ago when I graduated from undergrad one of my gifts from my parents was a pair of Phillies tickets in Section 116 5 rows behind the Phillies dugout. I was so excited and could not wait for the game. I’ve ALWAYS wanted to dance on the dugout with the famous Phillie Phanatic himself so I knew that this would be my best chance to be seen and that I had to make a clever sign. I didn’t end up dancing with the Phanatic :( but I had an awesome time at the game and little did I know but 6 months later I would be trying out and becoming a Phillies ballgirl, the following summer my dream came true and I was dancing on the dugout with the Phillie Phanatic!!!