A Quick Trip to the Badger State: Wisconsin Road Trip Report

As most of you know by now, Wisconsin is my favorite state. So when the ESPN Radio affiliate in Madison recently invited me to take part in a panel discussion about uniforms on the morning of Tuesday, Dec. 15, I didn’t just accept their offer — I turned it into a mini-road trip with the Tugboat Captain.

We only had a few days to work with, so we flew in to Milwaukee on Saturday, spent the day there, and then, as you can see above, tooled around a bit in the southeastern part of the state, tracing in a clockwise route that eventually brought us back to Milwaukee on Tuesday. Here’s a closer look at the ground we covered (as usual, the route shown is approximate; click to enlarge):

We were in more of a “Let’s experience this” mode than a “Let’s document this” mode, so the photographic record that follows is very incomplete, but it should at least give you a bit of the flavor of the trip. Most of photos were taken either by me or TBC (you can generally assume that the better ones are hers), plus I poached a few from the web. You can click on any of them to see a larger version.

Saturday, Dec. 12: We arrived in Milwaukee a little past noon — lunchtime — so our first stop was Jake’s Deli, which is one of America’s more unusual eateries: a Jewish deli staffed entirely by blacks. I had a pastrami on rye; TBC had a Rachel (pastrami, Swiss, and slaw on rye toast). Both were my-t-fine:

After make a few other stops, we picked up longtime Uni Watch pal/ally Comrade Robert Marshall, who’d taken the train up from Chicago to meet us, and then decamped for my favorite spot in all of Milwaukee: Gene & Marcy’s Holler House, a corner tavern whose basement is home to America’s oldest pair of league-sanctioned bowling lanes:

I had called ahead a few days earlier to book the lanes and arrange for a live pinboy (no auto-set pins at Holler House!), so we had a few drinks and then went downstairs to bowl. It was TBC’s first time, and she made herself right at home:

I’ve bowled many times at Holler House, and it’s always a special pilgrimage, but it was particularly satisfying this time around, because (a) it was my first time bowling after breaking my arm two months earlier, and I was relieved to find that my arm felt good and all my mechanics still felt right, and (b) Marshall had been talking smack for several days about kicking my ass and continued to give me the ol’ rufus-goofus as we bowled, so it was extra-satisfying to stick it to him:

After three games, we tipped our pinboy and moved on to Three Brothers, an old, well-regarded Serbian restaurant, where we ordered suckling pig and burek, which is a wonderful meat pie consisting of filo dough and ground beef. Dee-lish (first photo poached; video from a local news station):

Sunday, Dec. 13: I’ve long been a fan of American Science & Surplus, which sells all sorts of specialized gadgetry and trinkets — some of it edumacational, most of it fascinating, all of it playfully presented. Sort of a hardware store for cool geeks. I’ve mail-ordered from them many times but had never visited any of their three shops, one of which is in Milwaukee, so that’s where we began our day.

It did not disappoint. Sooooo much cool stuff! I was particularly charmed by the display of cork stoppers, although several other displays also caught my eye:

Eventually we pushed on, leaving Milwaukee and winding our way through the countryside. Although I’ve been to Wisconsin at least 15 times in the past 20 years, I’d never been there in the late fall or winter, and it was interesting to see the state’s beautiful landscape reconfigured by the season — the trees without their leaves, the fields shorn of their corn. Wisconsin, like so much of America, grows soooo much corn (way too much, actually, but that’s another story for another day), and it was striking to see all of those fields stripped bare, especially because the corn harvest leaves behind all these little stumps, which somehow makes it feel like the land has been scorched or ravaged, not just farmed. Driving through all those bare fields was still beautiful, but it was a different kind of beauty — more reserved, more melancholy.

We wanted to find a tavern where we could watch the Packers/Cowboys game. (Footnote: Our rental car had Texas plates, pretty much the worst possible option for that particular weekend in Wisconsin.) We found it in Janesville, where we stopped in at the local Eagles club. It’s technically for members only, but we talked our way in and had no trouble making friends with Jamie, the bartender, and a few of the other patrons. At one point a gent at the end of the bar bought a round for the house, which resulted in two eagle-themed chits being placed in front of us. I really wanted to save them as souvenirs instead of cashing them in, but of course that would have been rude, so this photo will have to suffice:

As for the game, the Packers won, so everyone was happy. I had worn my vintage Packers dickie under my shirt and had hoped to show it off to a fellow tavern patron during the course of the game, but I sensed that it just wasn’t that kind of crowd, so I kept it to myself.

After the game we grabbed a bite and drove on to Evansville, where we stayed with my longtime pal the fabulous Kelly Hogan. If you’re not familiar with her solo work, you may know her from her old bands, the Rock*A*Teens and the Jody Grind, or for her backing vocals with Neko Case and, more recently, the Decemberists. Or maybe you’ve never heard of her, in which case you’re really missing out, but whatever — either way, she’s one of the most awesome and inspiring people I’ve ever known. I hadn’t seen her since 2008, when the Forewords (my short-lived lecture/slideshow “band” with my friend Liz Clayton) opened for the Magnetic Fields in Madison, so it was a treat to stay with her. Here she is with her completely ridiculous pooch Eddie Spaghetti:

Monday, Dec. 13: We bade farewell to Kelly and set out in search of a bunch of small-town taverns, cheese shops, thrift stores that had been recommended by various sources. Two of the taverns — Brewer’s in Albany and Dot’s in Belleville — were outstanding (Dot’s was particularly interesting because it’s located in the basement of a house on a residential block), but we didn’t get photos of either one. Dang.

Soon it was time for us to arrive in Madison. We checked into our hotel, had dinner with the ESPN Radio people who had invited me for the panel discussion, and then went off to the Madison Curling Club, where we met up with longtime Uni Watch reader/commenter R. Scott Rogers, who recently moved from DC to Madison (and who really polished the apple by wearing his Uni Watch ugly sweater T-shirt):

We also met up with my friend (and U.S. Olympic athlete!) Craig Brown, who was the skip on my first curling team back in 2010. Craig, who lives in Madison, was busy leading his team to a victory when we visited the club but scooted back to chat with us a few times in between shots. Kicking myself for not getting a photo of myself with him. Next time!

Tuesday, Dec. 15: Finally, it was time for the panel discussion, which was the reason we were here in the first place. I’d been informed the night before that the “panel” would simply be me being interviewed by radio host Greg Scalzo (one or two other people dropped out) — not quite what I’d had in mind, but I was fine with it.

The event was the latest in a series of quarterly sports-themed dialogues presented by the radio station, and the invitation-only crowd was primarily comprised of local businesspeople. Greg was a great host — we talked back and forth for about 45 minutes and then took questions from the audience. I thought it all went really well, and lots of people approached me afterward and said how much they’d enjoyed it — nice.

Unfortunately, this is the only photo:

The jersey I’m wearing there is this one, which I wore because it’s from a Wisconsin factory team — figured the local connection would be a good talking point (and it was). And yes, I tucked it in, which I’m sure some of you think was a dork move. I actually agonized over that point but ultimately decided it would be too informal, or maybe even rude, to go untucked when I was the guest of honor. And since I was wearing corduroy slacks and dress shoes, not jeans and sneakers, I think it was okay.

After the event we spent most of the day moseying back to Milwaukee. We made a few stops along the way, including one in Watertown, where we wanted to check out this 1850s octagonal house:

It’s open to visitors for most of year — except in winter, so we couldn’t go inside. But it was still fun to walk around it. We had spotted a cool-looking eatery in another part of town, so we stopped there for lunch:

Wish I’d gotten a photo (or, better yet, a video) of the counter gal, Natalie, who was a real stitch. More of a performer than a server, and I mean that in the best way. I’m assuming she’s locally famous — and if she isn’t, she should be.

A bit later, as we were heading toward the shore of Lac La Belle, we found ourselves on a road called Oosty Ave. Such a fun name — Oosty! That seemed pretty good, but then we came upon this intersection:

I’m fairly certain that only in Wisconsin can you come to the intersection of Oosty and Oosty.

There was more (lots of frozen custard, lots of bars, a historic marker for the site of the state’s first limburger cheese factory, etc.), but that’s enough for today. Thanks for your indulgence. We’ll get back to more typical Uni Watch content tomorrow.

• • • • •

Speaking of speaking gigs: I enjoy doing events like the one I just did in Madison, and the audience usually seems to enjoy it as well. If your company or organization has a budget for this type of thing and you’d like to have me stop by for a presentation or a Q&A session, let’s talk. Thanks.

• • • • •

Year-end raffle reminder: In case you missed it on Monday, I’m giving away lots of very cool stuff in my annual year-end reader-appreciation raffle. Check it out here.

• • • • •

Leafs-redesign contest reminder: My latest ESPN design contest is a challenge to redesign the Maple Leafs. Full details here.

• • • • •

Collector’s Corner
By Brinke Guthrie

As a season ticket holder for the Bengals in the 1970s, I always looked forward to getting the team Christmas card. Never got one from the Reds, but here’s what Sparky Anderson’s card looked like (at least through Christmas of 1977). And here’s a team-issued card from Christmas of 1970.

Now on to the rest of the week for this rare Thursday edition of Collector’s Corner:

• Here’s an early-1970s decal for the ABA Miami Floridians, and a late-1960s decal for the Houston Mavericks (who I had no memory of, frankly).

• I like this 1969 Pro Football Hall of Fame Game ticket stub featuring the Packers and Falcons. They’re both “Member Teams of the National Football League,” which I guess you needed to know before you actually went to the game. [I suspect that was to differentiate them from the AFL, which was still a separate league at that time, although plans for the merger had already been set in motion. ”” PL]

• Nice retro look to these 1970s bedsheets. Is that a Rams QB with a red and white helmet and uni?

• Would I have loved to see one of these 1970s Cowboys helmet plaques under the tree when I lived in Big D? I think so.

• Two great 1970s Mini-Stick and Goal kits — the West Division here and Eastern Division here.

• This Game Bag is “the hottest thing in football” — says so right there! Endorsed by Alex Karras, the Game Bag was basically a big thermal sack you stuffed yourself into. I can think of a few Bengals games this would have been good for.

• Great graphics on this boxed set of 1960s NFL playing cards!

• Now here is a stocking stuffer! Seventeen NFL Helmet Buggies in one lot, right here!

• We’ve got a 1970s Pittsburgh Penguins promo hockey puck here, sponsored by Duke, the Krausened Beer. Being a non-drinker, I had to look that one up.

• Look at this 1962 Sears boy’s football uniform set ad. In the lower right, the image says “UCLA stripes” on the sleeves — and you can get your name on the back!

Follow Brinke on Twitter: @brinkeguthrie

•  •  •  •  •

T-Shirt Club year-end prize update: The prize for those of you who ordered all 12 of the Uni Watch T-Shirt Club’s designs has arrived. Check it out:

Nice, right? This patch is only available to people who ordered all 12 shirts. If that’s you, you can prove you’ve collected ’em all and thereby claim your prize by either (a) taking a photo of all 12 shirts or (b) taking screen shots of your 12 order-confirmation emails from Teespring and putting the 12 shots into a folder. Then email the photo or the folder to TshirtClubProof@gmail.com (note that this is a new address — please do not send your proof to the regular Uni Watch email address), and be sure to include your mailing address so I know where to mail your patch.

For those of you who’ve already sent in your proof, I’ll start mailing out the patches today.

•  •  •  •  •

small king
And now a word from Phil: In case you missed it in Sunday’s post, I ran a set of holiday recollections from Jimmy Corcoran (scroll down), who’s the son of former NFL, WFL, and NCAA Quarterback King Corcoran. He shared some great stories, along with some photos of uniform-related holiday ornaments.

That got me thinking — do you guys have any uni-related ornaments, cards, and decorations of your own? If so, I’d love to see them. Jimmy’s recollections are a good guide as to what I’m looking for, and there are further instructions in Sunday’s post. Send photos and a brief description to Phil.Hecken@gmail.com. I’ll run your stories on the weekends for the remainder of 2015. Thanks!

•  •  •  •  •

Grommetization project, continued: Might this be the ultimate grommetable foodstuff? Perhaps, perhaps (click to enlarge):

• • • • •

The Ticker
By Paul

Baseball News: I’m quoted in this MLB.com article about stirrups. ”¦ And speaking of baseball hosiery, look at this amazing page of socks from an 1875 sporting goods catalog. Also love the name of the catalog at the top of the page (from John Thorn). ”¦ Keeping with the same theme, check out this awesome Willie Mays sock ad! ”¦ I’ve written several times about the White War of 1967, but now Keith Olbermann has come up with something new: Four gorgeous color photos showing the A’s wearing white caps for their game against the Yankees on May 31, 1967. Click on those thumbnails to larger versions of the pics. Also, note that the first shot shows starter Diego Segui warming up before the game next to home plate instead of in the bullpen, once-common routine that’s now all but forgotten. ”¦ Pretty cool vintage Fleet City Bluejackets uniform on display at the California state capitol. ”¦ Someone has ranked the caps of the Rockies’ minor league affiliates.

NFL News: “I’m a member of the Chicago Bears Season Ticket Advisor Group,” says a reader who’d prefer not to be named. “At our meeting on Wednesday night, they informed us that every Thursday-night game next year will be a ‘color rash’ game [which we already knew, of course ”” PL], and that if the Bears play on a Thursday Night, they will wear mono-navy, not orange.” To my knowledge, the Bears have worn mono-navy only once before, for a Monday-night game against the Packers in 2002. They lost, and the party line since then has been that they’d never wear mono-navy again because of the loss. I think that type of superstitious thing is silly, and I can certainly think of other, better reasons for them not to go mono-navy (for example: looks like total fucking shit), but it’s nice to know that they can scrap their superstition in order to conform with a silly corporate costuming initiative. ”¦ Check this out: Raiders LB Tom Louderback apparently had FNOB — thereby living up to his surname, one might say — for a 1960 or ’61 Topps photo (from Keith Olbermann). ”¦ Color Rash on tap tonight for the Bucs (and also for the Rams, of course, but haven’t seen their silly graphic, which is probably for the best). ”¦ Kinda sad that this is noteworthy: Ted Taylor points out that Pats QB Tom Brady often appears at press conferences wearing a plain, logo-free sweatshirt. I find that remarkably refreshing — good for him. ”¦ Old-school end zone design on tap for the 49ers. That’s for their game on Dec. 20 against the Bengals — the NFL is hyping it as a past Super Bowl match-up, hence the retro design (thanks, Brinke).

College Football News: Here are the patches for the Credit Card Bowl, the Middlebrow Steakhouse Bowl, the Lifestyle Cap Bowl, and the Really Crappy Internet Hosting Bowl. Happily, no corporate douchebaggery for the Stagg Bowl patch. ”¦ Southern Miss’s equipment staff has a shitload of non-Southern Miss helmets (from @StateFan3000). ”¦ Here are Notre Dame’s sideline jackets for the Obstacle Course Bowl.

Hockey News: Here’s a rundown of ugly Xmas jerseys (thanks, Phil). ”¦ The Capitals’ new red throwbacks finally made their on-ice debut last night. “We finally get to see that the helmets are red, which happens to match the old days,” notes Mike Engle.

NBA News: Here’s a look at some of the Bulls’ most eye-catching uniforms over the years (from Bryce Starkey). ”¦ Reprinted from yesterday’s comments: Interesting piece on the art of NBA court design (from James Steever). ”¦ The Wizards will debut their Bullets fauxbacks on Saturday (from @sknsane). ”¦ Only two colors on the court for last night’s Nets/Heat game: black and white. Yes, yes, I know — white is the absence of color, black is all colors, blah-blah-blah. And yet: Only two colors on the court last night, black and white (from @Bobb_O).

College Hoops News: Seton Hall will unveil a new “old school” uniform — which I guess means a throwback, right? — this afternoon. ”¦ Throwbacks last night for UMass (from @caliparty8). ”¦ High Point’s NOBs are sitting way too high. Vertically center them! (From @SoCalMindset).

Grab Bag: Check it out: Bjorn Borg once had his own candy bar (from Brinke, of course, who also posted this big set of very cool vintage tennis photos). ”¦ Somewhere out there is a guy who runs half-marathons in a business suit (from Tommy Turner). ”¦ Whoa, check out this awesome letterhead from an old curling broom company. Poignant letter, too (great find from Joanna Zwiep). ”¦ Boxing Day jersey for the Leeds Rhinos rugby team.

104 comments to A Quick Trip to the Badger State: Wisconsin Road Trip Report

  • Dumb Guy | December 17, 2015 at 8:25 am |

    Jerry: Well,where are you?

    Cosmo Kramer: I’m at the corner of Oosty, and Oosty. Wait a minute. How can the same street intersect with itself? I must be at the nexus of the universe!

    • arrScott | December 17, 2015 at 9:56 am |

      In all seriousness, nearby same-name streets with different street types are a terrible idea. As a kid, I lived near the intersection of Hiawatha Circle and Hiawatha Drive. (Hiawatha Circle wasn’t just a cul-de-sac, it was a long street leading to a cul-de-sac.) It was a rare day when we didn’t have to trade mis-delivered mail with our neighbors on the street of the other name.

      I currently live on a street that curves backward on itself, so the bit I live on changes street name for a block and a half to avoid doubling up address numbers. Also a terrible idea; we frequently get mail addressed to the same street number due south of us even though the street has a different name there.

      • Jerry | December 17, 2015 at 10:37 am |

        It’s quite common in Wisconsin. My favorite though is N. South Street, or N. East Street, etc… BTW, Watertown is an awesome little city, that’s where my daughter lives.

      • scottrj | December 17, 2015 at 10:42 am |

        I can beat that: the neighborhood I lived in until 2013 had THREE same-name streets (designated Drive, Circle, and Court). And there were two other same-name streets in it to boot. Literally every conversation you had about something to do with the neighborhood, you had to seek or give clarification about which street was being referred to.

        • mike 2 | December 17, 2015 at 11:47 am |

          The dumbest thing we have in my city (not too far from me) is the intersection of 18th Street and 24th Street. They should never meet!

      • Chance Michaels | December 17, 2015 at 11:49 am |

        Astoria, Queens is like that. Streets and Roads and Avenues and even a couple Places all jumbled up together. There’s a block bordered by 14th Street on one side and 14th Place on the other. Or this stretch where you can walk north on 21st Street and pass, in order, 31st Drive, then 31st Road, then 31st Avenue, all running parallel to each other. Then the sequence repeats again for 30th.

        When going somewhere new in western Queens, make sure you write down the entire address.

    • Will S | December 17, 2015 at 12:49 pm |

      Fairly common here also; doesn’t bother me as it is usually a crescent or place off a street or avenue (i.e. Huron Cr. off Huron Ave.) – haven’t heard of any problems with mixups.

      More annoying is the two Lincoln Streets on the opposites end of town, and the Gordan Avenue and Gordon Street also on opposite ends of town.

      My least favourite local street name is John Street Road.

      Most unique is Syndicate Avenue.

      • Will S | December 17, 2015 at 3:48 pm |

        should be “Gordon Avenue and Gordon Street”

    • Alex | December 17, 2015 at 2:14 pm |

      My town has two blocks from each other, both East/West streets of:

      East North Union
      West North Union
      East South Union
      West South Union

      That’s always loads of fun.

      • Garrett | December 17, 2015 at 4:04 pm |

        In Tulsa, OK there’s Admiral Street, Admiral Boulevard, and Admiral Place and Admiral St and Blvd run parallel to each other one block apart.

        • Paul Lukas | December 17, 2015 at 4:10 pm |

          OK, we get it — lots of places have “X Road” intersecting with “X Avenue.”

          But not a single one of them involves a name as good as Oosty.

    • Travis | December 17, 2015 at 3:33 pm |

      In La Crosse, I lived in an apartment east of West Avenue, N.

    • Matt | December 17, 2015 at 3:40 pm |

      Imagine living at the corner West North Avenue and North Western Avenue in Chicago.

  • Dumb Guy | December 17, 2015 at 8:26 am |

    No mention of the footwear of the marathon-in-a-suit guy. I can’t image he runs in dress shoes.

  • GoTerriers | December 17, 2015 at 8:35 am |

    How does one get a sandwich with meat and cheese at a “kosher” deli??

    • Paul Lukas | December 17, 2015 at 8:38 am |

      It’s not Kosher.

    • Brett G | December 17, 2015 at 8:39 am |

      Kosher != Vegan

  • BurghFan | December 17, 2015 at 8:40 am |

    Proofreading:
    “– so our first stop was one of my Jake’s Deli,”
    “Monda-night game”

    • Paul Lukas | December 17, 2015 at 8:54 am |

      Fixed.

  • Dumb Guy | December 17, 2015 at 8:42 am |

    I enjoy travelling vicariously through you, Paul.

  • Tom | December 17, 2015 at 8:42 am |

    Paul, Seeing the Schlitz globe on the top of Three Brothers tavern looks like it be one of the old Schlitz Tied Houses. Built by the brewery to sell/promote their product way back when. There are still a bunch around Chicago.

    http://forgottenchicago.com/features/tied-houses/

    • Gary-O | December 17, 2015 at 1:55 pm |

      Tied House. I had no idea. That is why I came here everyday. Love it.

    • Gary-O | December 17, 2015 at 2:01 pm |

      …COME here everyday.

  • Joe from Eagle Mills | December 17, 2015 at 8:47 am |

    No need to apologize for the travelogues, Paul. I’ve enjoyed them.

  • The Jeff | December 17, 2015 at 8:51 am |

    I’m pleasantly surprised the Bears will go mono-navy. Yeah, forced mono for the color vs color games is still dumb, but I thought for sure they’d end up in orange. After all, they put the Bills in red and the Jets & Rams in colors they don’t even wear.

    Now if we can just get my Raiders to tell the NFL to F-off and wear their normal black & silver vs whoever in mono… that’d be great.

    • Andrew Harrington | December 17, 2015 at 9:20 am |

      True, the Jets and Rams don’t currently wear those colors, but they have in the past, just as the Bears have previously worn orange (from the late 1920s up until the early 1950s). The Bills have never worn red. That was ridiculous.

    • Collin | December 17, 2015 at 9:30 am |

      They put the Jets in green, how is green a color the Jets don’t wear?

      • The Jeff | December 17, 2015 at 9:41 am |

        Kelly Green is not Hunter Green.

      • Phil Hecken | December 17, 2015 at 9:47 am |

        I think he means the current shade (olive? drab? … possibly forest?) green they wear. They have like three of them. But the “kelly” green the Jets wore for their Color Rash game isn’t currently one of the several shades of green in their palette. They have, however, worn kelly green in their past.

        As to the Rams — I will need to see just what shade of gold the unis are actually in, but if they’re in athletic gold — this was a color they wore for years, until 2000, when they switched to the darker navy and metallic gold colorscheme. But it’s certainly historically correct.

        The Bills, as THE correctly points out, have never worn red, other than those awful helmets they wore from 1984-2010. The return to the white bucket and fauxbacks was the best thing to happen to the Bills unis. Even the red top, if ONLY used as a top and not in color rash, isn’t too bad and could probably be a decent alt (not that they need one).

        • arrScott | December 17, 2015 at 10:42 am |

          The Bills “have never worn red” – except for the recent twenty-five-season stretch when they wore red?

          We may not like the red helmet, but the Bills did actually wear it, and for full 45% of the team’s entire history. (At the time they stopped wearing the red helmet, they had worn it for the majority of team history.) That’s not a team that “has never worn red,” that’s a team that has often worn red.

          This may be the biggest problem with teams adopting accent colors or adopting non-team trends like BFBS: It sets a precedent for future bad design to treat accent colors or even non-team colors as part of the team’s uniform palette.

        • Phil Hecken | December 17, 2015 at 10:59 am |

          Semantics, Arr (nice ugly holiday sweatshirt, btw — I’ll be wearing mine for curling this Sunday)… but I digress.

          We/THE mean the Bills have never worn a solid (except for the striping) red jersey or red pants, not that red has never been a color. But you knew this. I love to quibble over small points as much as anyone, but in this case, you know what we’re talking about. A predominately red jersey or pants, not that there has never been red on the pants or jersey.

        • Andrew Harrington | December 17, 2015 at 4:36 pm |

          Correct. When I say a team “wears” a specific color, It’s to mean the jersey of a hockey or football team or the uniform of a basketball team. Thus, the Bills have never worn red, but the Jets have worn kelly green, the Rams have worn gold and the Bears have worn orange before.

  • Coach Batt | December 17, 2015 at 9:01 am |

    Looking at the “old school” endzone for the 49er/Bengal game…. The image of the “profile helmet” with the classic 2-bar facemask is phenomenal and outclasses every other helmet image the NFL has come up with since.

    I always preferred this look and believe it was phased out of “official” NFL style-guide/tv graphics sometime in the late 1980’s.

    In the meantime, the current, 3/4 helmet profile with more of a “caged” facemask has always struck me as too ‘busy’ and trying to look ‘tough’.

    Just my thoughts!! I wonder if we could figure out when the graphic switch was made.

    • Andrew Harrington | December 17, 2015 at 9:26 am |

      The problem with it is that the basic NFL helmet graphic uses a facemask from the 1980s that was very short lived compared with what came before and what came after. All those marks look very dated. Updating it to a present day helmet graphic is also problematic because the industry moves much quicker than it used to and any one of those graphics will be obsolete in five years as well. It would be best to switch to a “timeless” or “classic” graphic, like the two-bar helmet, because it is such an enduring image in the timeline of football equipment, similar to how the black and white paneled Telstar design of the 1970s became the “classic” graphic for a soccer ball. Almost all crests use either that ball or an even older volleyball-style ball.

      • Mangler | December 17, 2015 at 6:28 pm |

        I like how the Browns logo has evolved according to whatever the NFL decides a helmet looks like.

    • Jakob Wolf | December 17, 2015 at 11:30 am |

      Super bowl 29 was the last with the two-bar mask.
      http://static.nfl.com/static/content/public/image/getty/2007/6601074P_SB_XXIX_GENERAL_VIEW_20070825160008_gallery_600.jpg
      This was the field for #30:
      http://media-2.web.britannica.com/eb-media/32/102832-050-5EDBE29C.jpg

      You want timeless, go to a no-facemask helmet. Me, I’d prefer a single bar, but folks would sneer that it’s too kicker-y.

      • The Jeff | December 17, 2015 at 11:57 am |

        I’m really surprised it lasted that long. Even in 1994, I don’t think anyone had actually worn the classic 2 bar mask in at least 7 or 8 years. The single bar hung around a while longer due to a couple kickers playing forever.

    • Chance Michaels | December 17, 2015 at 11:54 am |

      The Packers were still using a single-bar graphic as late as 1993. Gray, too, which the Packers hadn’t worn since ’79.

      • The Jeff | December 17, 2015 at 11:57 am |

        That’s not gray, that’s white… that’s like a gumball helmet there.

      • Coach Batt | December 17, 2015 at 12:24 pm |

        Great stuff being batted around… I remember the Bears and Skins kept the profile-old school bars look in their endzones for a while as well. I believe Chicago was classic 2-bar and Washington single!

        • Jakob Wolf | December 17, 2015 at 12:40 pm |

          The endzones at RFK had 2-bar masks for both tenants (let’s not forget the Federals).

  • Ernie_Davis 44 | December 17, 2015 at 9:04 am |

    I love the Bjorn Bar

    here’s a fun collection Mandatory.com ran a few years ago on food/drinks named for athletes http://www.mandatory.com/2013/11/05/30-unbelievably-awesome-athlete-food-products/17

    spoiler: they aren’t all named for superstars

  • Dave S | December 17, 2015 at 9:20 am |

    Enjoyed the travelogu! I was in WI for the Packers v Bears Thanksgiving game. We stopped at a place called Sobelman’s in Milwaukee; tasty burgers and loaded bloody marys.

  • collin2387 | December 17, 2015 at 9:28 am |

    Paul, glad you love our fair state of Wisconsin. Would love to be a part of a Uniwatch Meet-up in Milwaukee or Madison sometime in the future.

    Have you ever checked out the House on the Rock in Spring Green? Definitely worth the stop on a future trip.

    • Paul Lukas | December 17, 2015 at 9:37 am |

      Been to House on the Rock several times. World’s biggest collection of the world’s biggest collections!

      • SWC Susan | December 17, 2015 at 2:10 pm |

        Nope, THIS is the world’s largest collection of world’s largest collections! Happened upon the rather unassuming exterior while travelling on the road less travelled and went in anyway… Holy Moly, what a surprise and treat!!! Anything and everything – something for everyone from 1000 toothpick holders to lunchboxes to sports to tractors. And not just regular collections – collections with items that you saying, “I have never seen one of those in person…”.

        • SWC Susan | December 17, 2015 at 2:19 pm |

          Rocks. fossils, minerals, and indian artifcats too. Some of the biggest crystal formations I have ever seen!

    • arrScott | December 17, 2015 at 9:49 am |

      Paul castigated me for having lived in Wisconsin since August and not yet having been to House on the Rock, and then sang its praises. Also the Mustard Museum in Middleton, which is very high on my to-do list. I went to a mustard museum in Holland once – wound up randomly sharing a train seat with Dave Eggers on the way to the little town with the mustard museum – and it was one of my favorite experiences in Europe, so I’m looking forward to the local version.

      Back to House on the Rock, it figures prominently in Neil Gaiman’s “American Gods,” so if you dig House on the Rock, you’ll probably dig that novel.

  • JediJeff | December 17, 2015 at 9:31 am |

    Technically, white is the combined spectrum and black is the absence of all color:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black

    • The Jeff | December 17, 2015 at 9:37 am |

      That depends on if you’re dealing with light, or pigments. Computer color vs paint color.

  • Mike | December 17, 2015 at 9:33 am |

    I’ve been reading Uni Watch forever and I’m just now finding out you are friends with the amazing Kelly Hogan? Awesome.

    • Paul Lukas | December 17, 2015 at 9:38 am |

      Hogan was a big fan of my 1990s zine, Beer Frame: The Journal of Inconspicuous Consumption, so that’s how we first got acquainted.

  • Rob Ullman | December 17, 2015 at 9:57 am |

    The ol’ rufus-goofus. Good lord, man. This is the stuff dreams are made of.

  • Kevin Allen | December 17, 2015 at 9:59 am |

    ULTRA-sweet Tequila Sunrise warm ups and coaches gear in the new Alleson football catalog this season.

    http://www.alleson.com/catalog/?cat=Alleson_Football_2016&sp=31

  • Rolf | December 17, 2015 at 10:00 am |

    That Houston Mavericks mascot looks like Donald Duck with an udder.

  • Rolf | December 17, 2015 at 10:11 am |

    Re: Bears’ mono-color next year.

    The Color Rash look will be different from the time the Bears lost in all-blue, in that there will be those blue socks without white in them. Plus, I wouldn’t be surprised if there was some other odd element such as an all-white wishbone C (from the Gayle Sayers era), or perhaps the Bronko Nagurski throwbacks.

    • The Jeff | December 17, 2015 at 10:21 am |

      They might just wear their normal striped socks, without the low whites.

  • Joe Rodgers | December 17, 2015 at 10:49 am |

    The Bears wore the all-bue in 2006 against the Packers as well. Got their butts kicked.

    • Chance Michaels | December 17, 2015 at 12:05 pm |

      They sure did. But they’d already clinched the #1 seed, and didn’t take that game very seriously. Hence the clown outfits.

      • Chance Michaels | December 17, 2015 at 12:21 pm |

        Here’s a photo of that 2006 uniform.

        • Joe Rodgers | December 17, 2015 at 8:55 pm |

          Grossman even admitted he didn’t take it seriously.

  • Snowdan | December 17, 2015 at 10:51 am |

    I assume you mean Evansville not Ellenville, WI. There’s an Ellenville in upstate NY but I’m not seeing one in WI.

    • Paul Lukas | December 17, 2015 at 11:27 am |

      Correct — my bad. Now fixed.

  • Matt Fields | December 17, 2015 at 10:54 am |

    Enjoyed this very much. Paul, your trips always look like a careful, yet not-too-carefully crafted, adventure. Those seem to be the best kind. The stops you made have a decidedly consistent theme: Americana from the Boomers. It reminds me of this story (https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/wonk/wp/2014/12/23/why-our-christmas-music-is-still-stuck-in-the-50s/?tid=sm_tw) – you decided to visit anywhere a Boomer went twice!

  • Nick P | December 17, 2015 at 10:56 am |

    Paul,
    Next time you’re in WI I think you’d enjoy my hometown of Racine. The food alone is worth the trip: Kewpees, Sausage Kitchen, Lee’s Deli, Wells Bro’s Pizza, O&H and Bendtsen’s Kringle, prime rib at The Corner House, DeRose’s fish fry, and a meatball bomber made by nonna at Infusino’s. Plus we have a curling club and plenty of classic Wisconsin taverns.

    My wife formerly lived in Park Slope and looks forward our food/family trips to Racine: recommended.

    • Paul Lukas | December 17, 2015 at 11:28 am |

      I’ve been to (and enjoyed!) Racine — esp. Kewpee’s and the very beautiful Johnson Wax building (which was still open for tours when I visited it about 10 yrs ago, although I think that’s no longer the case).

      • Nick P | December 17, 2015 at 12:04 pm |

        Great! J Wax just finished a big renovation of the tower and is (I’m pretty sure) offering limited tours again. J Wax also offer tours of Frank Lloyd Wright’s ‘Wingspread’ house, very cool even if the windows do leak.

        People say Racine is a dump (which I won’t dispute) but she’s not without her charm. Glad you enjoyed your trip.

      • Chance Michaels | December 17, 2015 at 12:06 pm |

        Johnson Wax isn’t doing tours any more? That’s a shame, although the last time I went was about the same time you did.

  • Le Cracquere | December 17, 2015 at 11:01 am |

    Kelly Hogan! As someone who spent the first forty years of his life in Atlanta, I’m well acquainted with that name–glad to hear & see that she’s doing so well.

  • Wafflebored | December 17, 2015 at 11:02 am |

    Another great travel piece, maybe the best one yet! American Science & Surplus looks like my kind of place.

  • Patrick Homa | December 17, 2015 at 11:11 am |

    Love the renamed corporate d-baggery bowl games in the Ticker.

    • Paul Lukas | December 17, 2015 at 11:29 am |

      Been doing that for years. My basic protocol for such nonsense.

    • Tom V. | December 17, 2015 at 1:58 pm |

      You know, for the high level of reporting and accuracy Paul delivers and demands at this site, I find the fact that he insists on made up names for the bowls unfortunate. I agree with the nonsense part of it, but with so many bowls, so many obscure names for the bowls and the fact many change names every year, I usually just shake my head and say “come on Paul, try harder”. I know Notre Dame is playing Ohio State in a bowl, but I have no clue what or where the obstacle course bowl would be, or the actual name it refers to.

      • Paul Lukas | December 17, 2015 at 2:18 pm |

        Fuck the bowls. I give them all the respect they deserve, which is approximately zero.

      • Bromotrifluoromethane | December 17, 2015 at 9:36 pm |

        If they are a bowl with a former name before the corporate douchiness changed it I still refer to it by that name. If they’re a newer bowl with no previous history I just call it “that bowl in “. Seems to work out OK.

        • Paul Lukas | December 17, 2015 at 9:47 pm |

          If they are a bowl with a former name before the corporate douchiness changed it I still refer to it by that name.

          Why? They’ve sold out their identity to corporate douchebags, which basically means they ARE corporate douchebags, so why should they get to retain the dignity and status of their original name? Fuck that, and fuck all of them. Greedy and corrupt.

        • Bromotrifluoromethane | December 18, 2015 at 12:45 am |

          I can agree with that. I guess the bowl names are my place where I like the old/traditional things. Everyone else here (mostly) likes that in their logos and uniforms. I go for it in the bowl names.

  • Jim Vilk | December 17, 2015 at 11:43 am |

    Gotta admit, your industrial Swiss cheese is a piece of art.

    Did you find any grommets at that hardware store?

    • Paul Lukas | December 17, 2015 at 12:12 pm |

      I was soooo excited to shop for grommet at American Science & Surplus — but they didn’t have any. A rare hole (so to speak) in their inventory.

    • Jim Vilk | December 17, 2015 at 12:48 pm |

      Speaking of art, I LOVE that metal curling display at the Madison club.

  • Lee | December 17, 2015 at 12:15 pm |

    As always (altho I rarely mention it), L-O-V-E-D the travelogue!

    Not just this Wisconsin one, but because of your other trips, and your sharing of them here, have inspired me to do a ‘Quebec-in-the-Fall’ trip next October. (I live in San Francisco).
    I will take more pictures than you do, but looking for similar points of interest.

    Anyways, thanks for sharing!

    Lee

    • Lee | December 17, 2015 at 12:16 pm |

      You partially inspired me, I should say…

      Lee

  • JessMan | December 17, 2015 at 12:16 pm |

    The Colorado Rockies have by-far the best minor league team names & logos in all of sports, especially the old Asheville Tourists bear-with-a-suitcase logo: http://www.sportslogos.net/…/Asheville_To…/1980/Primary_Logo

  • Chance Michaels | December 17, 2015 at 12:17 pm |

    Paul, next time you’re in Wisconsin the Gobbler should be up and running. I’m sure we’ve talked about the long-shuttered supper club with its amazing Googie architecture. It’s right off I-94 between Milwaukee and Madison, I used to go past it all the time on that drive.

    After decades of neglect, and a few close calls with destruction, it’s been bought and re-opened as a music venue. With some of its original furnishings in place! Can’t wait to see it myself.

    • Paul Lukas | December 17, 2015 at 12:27 pm |

      Visited the Gobbler last fall. It was closed, natch, but I walked around, took photos, etc. Good to know it’s being rejuvenated!

  • Lee | December 17, 2015 at 12:19 pm |

    Can we, for the sake of uniform discussions, please just accept that ‘black’ and ‘white’ are colors?

    And every time the 49ers trot out their old-tymey wordmark makes me only hate their current mark that much more so.

    Lee

  • Matthew Prigge | December 17, 2015 at 12:27 pm |

    Hello Paul,

    I did a photo book on Manitowoc a couple years ago and came across a team photo of the aluminum goods team from 1924. Seems they didn’t have nine of the style you have to go around…

    https://www.facebook.com/imagesmanitowoc/photos/pb.661432683895532.-2207520000.1450373046./669998906372243/?type=3&theater

  • Dumb Guy | December 17, 2015 at 1:23 pm |

    There is a store here in Orlando called Skycraft Parts and Surplus. My wife and I call it The Rocket Store because, well it has a “rocket” out front, and I think you can find everything you might need to actually build a rocket in the place!

    http://www.skycraftsurplus.com/Images/store2.jpg

    So many things in there that I have no idea what they are for, but the place is always packed with people buying them.

    • SWC Susan | December 17, 2015 at 2:17 pm |

      Totally hitting that one next time I go to the Cape. Thanks!

    • Tom V. | December 17, 2015 at 2:57 pm |

      Was going to say earlier Orlando has a place like that but the name escaped me. Drive near it most every day.

  • Alex | December 17, 2015 at 2:17 pm |

    I made my first trip to St. Louis this past weekend from Michigan (I drove to see my Rams and Blues play). I should have taken a picture of the rack in the team shop. Everything in the Rams teamshop was at least 25% off, and the color rush jerseys went from even amounts to about 20 Foles and 0 Gurley II jerseys on the rack. That was an interesting phenomenon. I asked a guy why he was getting one (Foles) because I overheard him say “god these are ugly.”, and he responded with “this will be one of the rarest jerseys in team history and I can always get someone to stitch a different name plate on it.” Made me chuckle

  • MTS | December 17, 2015 at 3:31 pm |

    >>To my knowledge, the Bears have worn mono-navy only once before, for a Monday-night game against the Packers in 2002.>>
    The Bears also wore mono-navy against the Packers on Dec 31 2006. They lost that game too. Pic on the link below (note that’s Bears QB Brian Griese in the photo, who was not on the team in 2002)
    http://cache4.asset-cache.net/gc/459577422-brian-griese-of-the-chicago-bears-in-action-gettyimages.jpg?v=1&c=IWSAsset&k=2&d=GkZZ8bf5zL1ZiijUmxa7QZ5a2o7WduNRN%2fTdYRrbyPNWX6l9rGqQAlHSsAJJZdLfGohXYCcewiel%2fTd2H9T%2bi8SCjGiSbLCTYq0WJYTUIVY%3d

    • Dave Mac | December 17, 2015 at 4:25 pm |

      I was just going to add that. Two primetime losses to the Packers combined with a terrible look led to this combination being shelved.

  • Luke McCarnan | December 17, 2015 at 5:50 pm |

    Really enjoyed the tour of Wisconsin. I went to high school and college in Watertown, so it was pretty cool to see the Octagon House and especially, Zwieg’s! Thanks for sharing, Paul. Go, Pack, Go!

  • Another Josh | December 17, 2015 at 8:58 pm |

    So are we sure that this Thursday night NFL game isn’t brought to us by McDonald’s?

  • Zac Wilcox | December 17, 2015 at 9:25 pm |

    Black is the absence of color and white is all the colors not the other way around

  • Jimmy Matthews | December 17, 2015 at 9:38 pm |

    Thanks for sharing your tour of Wisconsin. I have been back in the Greater Milwaukee area for the past 10 years and I didn’t know some of those places existed. I’ll have to check them out.

  • Bromotrifluoromethane | December 17, 2015 at 9:42 pm |

    Well… I still don’t understand why the Rams insist on the stupid horn collar. Couldn’t they just go full blue? The yellow jerseys are not pretty. But I wouldn’t mind seeing the old style look come back (along with the proper “Los Angeles” name of course).
    The Bucs look better than their usual uniforms. The lack of the pewter shoulders improves that design a ton. And I wish they would keep the red pants around as well. Just not ever again with the red jerseys and socks. If they wore the pewter pants with this jersey and the red pants with the white jersey it would be a much better looking set. Those alarm clock numbers need to be abandoned though. And I really wish they went with pewter jerseys/pants combo tonight.

  • Jake | December 18, 2015 at 6:49 am |

    Hey Paul,
    I’ve been reading for a few years now and you seem to really hate the name of the football team in Washington. You have explained in the past that is offensive along with the Chief Wahoo that Cleveland used for their baseball team. But I was reading this post and you claim that you went to a cafe staffed exclusively by “blacks”. I would assume that this has the same effect to an African-American as the word “Redskins” would have to a Native American. I’m not the PC police here but it’s just a thought for the future. It jumped off the page at me

    • Paul Lukas | December 18, 2015 at 7:20 am |

      I would assume that this has the same effect to an African-American…

      That’s quite an assumption. Now I’ll make an assumption of my own: I’m guessing you don’t have any black friends.

  • Jake | December 18, 2015 at 1:15 pm |

    Just merely pointing out that you are also identifying individuals by their skin color; a simple moral question that I thought could generate a discussion. Would it be offensive to call Native Americans “reds”?

    • Paul Lukas | December 18, 2015 at 1:32 pm |

      I don’t think you understand how discrimination, marginalization, and history work, at least not for these two groups.

  • Tory | December 19, 2015 at 6:24 pm |

    Thank you for always pointing out the good parts of Wisconsin. Noticed you went through New Glarus, hope you saw something there you liked.