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Butherus: Don’t discount the power of the punks

After four tallboys of Reef Donkey, everything seems like a good idea.

Even handing your 8-year-old kid the hair clippers and blessing a have-at-it attitude.

At the time, the Rays were riding a three game losing streak. The Red Sox of this 2020 season all of a sudden decided to play like the Red Sox who didn’t just win a World Series and were actually decent for a change.

The Rays needed a little bit of help.

So Cannon and I gave each other mohawks. Poorly executed. Sad, yet perfectly punk mohawks.

Starting that night, a 11-1 win over Boston, the Rays rattled off a 10-4 stretch on their way to claiming their first American League East title in 10 years.

I credit the haircuts.

You see, for those who who remember Tampa Bay sports history, the mohawk is something special. In 2008, a hairstyle rallied us all together as one in the name of baseball. Didn’t matter if you were a hipster or a redneck or whether you went Heroin Bob, trendy faux-hawk or full liberty spike. Everyone came together behind a team and a bad haircut.

The 2008 Rays players all joined in in unison. Some were cool. Some weren’t. BJ Upton looked like Wesley Snipes’ Demolition Man. Jonny Gomes looked like a Fred Durst fanboy. Manager Joe Maddon even joined in even though he looked like he he was trying to strike up a record deal for his pop boy band. It didn’t matter because it was enough to bring everyone together in a united cause.

I got to cover that Series as a journalist for the Tampa Tribune. I remember my bosses at the time bitching that I couldn’t have my mohawk in the press box because it might violate the journalist’s code of being objective. I reminded them them that I was ska-punk kid that has been showing up to work with blue hair for years.

We need that unity again. Not just in sports but as a nation. Tampa is a historically purple region in the most politically important state in the country.

We need to stop with the whole us versus them mentality and rally behind something pure.

So why not baseball and bad haircuts?

Seriously? What do you have to lose?

You’ve probably spent the last six months attending Zoom meetings for work. If you are anything like me, personal hygiene no longer matters. At this point I’m lucky if I even bother putting on pants during the workday.

So let’s bring the mohawk back in the name of supporting our teams. National pride is on the line and if being a native Floridian has taught me anything, it is that pride is for suckers. We would much rather look like fools and win in our skewed little chunk of paradise than be normal and suffer the fate of being from Philadelphia.

Let’s bring it back y’all.

Let’s rock the mohawks again.

Call it a faux hawk or even a qua-hawk. Doesn’t matter.

If the world is gonna burn down around us lets at least be the last champions. We can do it with crappy haircuts. Together.

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